The University of Tennessee has expressed interest in becoming a potential research and academic partner in a new proton therapy center currently under construction in Dowell Springs. Legislation sought by UT and sponsored by Sen. Doug Overbey and Rep. Ryan Haynes would allow the university to pursue the development and funding of related programs and facilities by becoming the guarantor of up to $98 million of the project’s costs. UT’s participation would allow the project to directly benefit from lower interest rates, and those savings could be reinvested by the university. The project is being financed with $110 million tax-exempt bonds issued by the Knox County Industrial Development Board in November and funded by a consortium of financial institutions led by Fifth Third Bank. Details of the legislation are still being worked out with different stakeholders, but Haynes said it has the potential to be a tremendous resource for UT. “It’s a very creative and innovative way to help UT and our region become a leader in radiological services,” he said. “The method we’re using is unique.” Read the full article here.