The Senate Higher Education Committee Friday approved an overhaul of the HOPE scholarship that will make cuts to the awards many Georgia college students receive. The panel voted 5-2 along party lines. Democrats said the bill was being railroaded and that the Republicans' proposal would probably only cover 80 percent of tuition costs because it's based on last years rates.
More than a hundred students marched from Georgia State University to the state capitol steps in downtown Atlanta to protest changes to the HOPE scholarship program. Meanwhile, senate Democrats propose their own fix.
A legislative committee has passed a bill that aims to crack down on illegal immigration in Georgia. And in the state Senate, some Democrats are concerned that a proposal to cut the HOPE scholarship program and pre-kindergarten program is moving too quickly through the Legislature.
Albany Representative Ed Rynders introduced a proposed constitutional amendment late last week to limit tuition increases at Georgia universities to the rate of inflation. He said it will help keep college affordable, especially for students who could lose some of their HOPE scholarship under a proposed restructuring.
A proposal to expand casino-like video lottery terminals to help fund the HOPE Scholarship program appears to be dead. When Governor Nathan Deal unveiled his own plan to fix HOPE this week, he rejected expanding gambling. And that pleased officials on Jekyll Island, where Republican State Representative Ron Stephens of Savannah proposed putting terminals.
A sweeping overhaul of the state's lottery-funded HOPE scholarship has rapidly cleared two hurdles in the Georgia Legislature. The House Appropriations Committee approved the bill 60-2 Thursday morning soon after the higher education subcomittee signed off on it.
Governor Nathan Deal wants top-performing Georgia high school students to receive free tuition at public colleges. Deal on Tuesday outlined sweeping changes he is proposing to the state's lottery-funded HOPE scholarship, which is struggling financially.