Welch Proposes Bill to Make College More Affordable

February 27, 2017


HILLSIDE, Ill. – In an effort to alleviate the burdensome tuition costs for college students across Illinois, state Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch is sponsoring legislation that would establish reimbursement grants for Illinois students at public universities.


“As Chair of the House Higher Education Committee, I see a lot of proposals that would affect a student’s ability to enroll into one of Illinois’ many public universities,” said Welch. “Constant tuition increases can prevent students from applying to state universities and colleges. It can also force them to look at colleges out of the state, and many times these students do not move back to Illinois after receiving their degree.”


Since Gov. Rauner took office, funding for state colleges and universities has been cut by almost 60 percent. Many schools have been forced to lay off staff, increase class sizes, reduce programs they offer and raise tuition rates; putting the cost on students. To help students with this new financial burden, Welch introduced House Bill 3447, which establishes the Tuition Reduction Act. The legislation provides full-time, Illinois undergraduate students enrolled at a public university with individual grants to help off-set tuition costs. Welch’s legislation is offering college students with a sense of security and a reason to stay enrolled in school.


“College is more expensive now than it has ever been,” said Welch. “We need young people to go to college and come back to the state to live and work, but when they are saddled with insurmountable amounts of debt that is extremely difficult. Investing in higher education makes college affordable, creates jobs and grows our economy. I want to provide more opportunities for students, and this legislation is just one way to do that.”

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