Barrar Asks Governor to Endorse Bill Providing In-State Tuition Rates for Veterans and Their Families
6/25/2015
HARRISBURG – Rep. Steve Barrar (R-Chester/Delaware) is calling on the governor to sign into law House Bill 131, which was approved by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. The bill would ensure that veterans and their families who qualify for GI Bill education benefits are charged in-state tuition rates in Pennsylvania, despite the enactment of a federal law last fall.

“We need to protect the rights we have promised our veterans as fiercely as they have protected our precious freedoms and great country,” Barrar said. “Our veterans need the governor to sign this bill so that they never have to worry that their education funding will be removed.”

Currently, if a college or university extends the in-state tuition rate only to residents of Pennsylvania and not to out-of-state veterans, federal law considers the school noncompliant. The federal government will not send any education benefit money to the noncompliant schools for the veterans—not even to veterans who are already enrolled and using their education benefits.

When House Bill 131 becomes law, colleges and university will not have the option to charge veterans the out-of-state tuition rate, regardless of the veterans’ residency status. This will prevent veterans from becoming unable to use the education benefits they have earned as a result of their school’s noncompliancy status.

“This legislation would benefit not only our veterans, but the colleges and universities, as well,” Barrar said. “Studies continue to show that veterans are top students. They perform well academically and graduate on time; veterans are truly the ideal students, and the higher education institutions of the Commonwealth are lucky to have them.”

The legislation passed in the House in February before moving to the Senate for consideration. The House concurred on the legislation today. It is now on its way to the governor’s desk to be signed into law before July 1. Otherwise, veterans and their families may be forced to borrow money to attend a noncompliant school or attend a school deemed compliant.

Representative Stephen E. Barrar
160th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Alison Evans
aevans@pahousegop.com
SteveBarrar.com / Facebook.com/RepBarrar
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