Lawmakers are told they'll see a price tag soon on an ambitious plan to shuffle New Jersey's universities and medical schools.

Sen. Paul Sarlo says it's unfair to ask the Senate Budget Committee to consider a bill to reconfigure Rutgers, Rowan and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey without knowing the cost.

Two Democrats who are sponsoring the legislation, Sens. Joe Vitale and Donald Norcross, say long-awaited cost estimates will be ready when the Budget panel takes up the bill Monday.

Vitale says voters could be asked to approve $3 billion for higher education capital projects.

The higher education restructuring act is getting its first legislative hearing Thursday.

Essex County lawmakers remain concerned about the fate of  Newark's University Hospital, the money-losing facility that's part of UMDNJ.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)