EDINBURG – Local healthcare and produce businessman T.C. Betancourt officially announced his candidacy Tuesday for the office of Texas State Representative District 41, slated for election on March 2012 in the Democrat primary.

Betancourt conducted a press conference from his conference room at his healthcare office in Edinburg, Elite Rehab Services. With the new district lines drawn up by the last legislative session, District 41 is now held by republican state representative Aaron Peña. District 41 incorporates parts or all of the cities of McAllen, Mission, Edinburg, Sharyland, Palmhurst and Pharr in South Texas.

Betancourt is seeking the legislative seat because he believes that it is time to focus on caring for the people of our district. He stated that those in charge this the last session cost South Texas billions of dollars in critical funding over the next several years. "I intend to work hard to create good-paying jobs, affordable healthcare and offer more people the ability to access the education they want. These are the opportunities and benefits that I have provided our employees and families in Hidalgo County for the past decade. I can be trusted to fight for the people of South Texas," he said.

His support runs deep throughout District 41 as he was surrounded by friends, neighbors, business colleagues, employees and his family including his parents and wife, Ana Betancourt, and their twin boys, Aiden and Tristan. He stated, "I believe that I have the experience, necessary resources and energy to run a strong campaign and get our message out into the community. We can change the way things are."

Betancourt believes that his years in healthcare and agriculture have provided him with many opportunities to see and learn first-hand how the political and government system operate - what works and what doesn't work. He went on to say, "I have been listening to what our district needs. I have the skills, energy and determination to successfully work with the state's top leadership, including the Valley legislative delegation, so our communities receive our fair share of Texas' financial resources."

Betancourt was born and raised in the Edinburg-McAllen area and is a product of the Edinburg CISD school system and graduated from Edinburg North High School in 1995. He obtained his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Agriculture Science from Texas A&M University Kingsville in 1998 and 2002 respectively. In addition, he earned an MBA from University of Texas - Pan American in 2006.

Betancourt and his wife Ana started Elite Rehab Services six years ago, a regional outpatient therapy clinic specializing in occupational and speech services. In addition, they provide their clients with nutritional and social services. They service pediatric and adult clients throughout the South Texas area and San Antonio. He is also involved in the operation of Betancourt & Co., a local-area produce company.

He is active and involved in groups that are affiliated with the advocacy of the healthcare providers on both the state and national level. He serves as Vice-President of the Out Patient Independent Rehab Association and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He is also a member of Produce Marketing Association and United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association.