State Senator Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) filed four pieces of legislation at the statehouse Feb. 20 aimed at protecting the integrity of the Monetary Award Program or MAP Grants, while also respecting taxpayers who pay for the student assistance program.
“We simply must do more with less,” Senator Rose said. “Restoring fiscal sanity to Illinois is job one, and reforming our state’s MAP grant program, which costs the state taxpayer’s $373 million per year, is critical to that mission.”
The reforms include converting “grants” to “loans,” if a MAP Grant student moves out of Illinois within five years of graduation.
“We can ill afford to make an investment in the future of a student of the magnitude that the MAP program provides and then have that student move out of state and start paying taxes somewhere else as their working career begins,” Rose said. The bill would require a prorated repayment schedule for people moving out of state, plus interest be returned to the taxpayers.
Students must complete their work on time or lose their grant, under another piece of legislation filed by Rose.
“We should incentivize kids to finish on time,” Rose said.
Under the third piece of legislation, a student could not receive a MAP Grant if he or she is enrolled in a for-profit institution. This has been a sticking point for years within the higher education community, and is also being debated nationally.
“Over the last few years, $17-25 million dollars annually has gone to ‘for-profit’ shareholders of schools that often offer very little value for the degree conferred,” Rose said. “In the meantime, kids at our traditional colleges and universities face rising tuition prices. This needs to end.”
Under the final piece of legislation, if a student who is receiving a MAP Grant is forced to leave college due to poor grades, that student would be ineligible to receive a MAP Grant the following academic year.
“It is not the taxpayers responsibility to subsidize kids who don’t make grades; it is time for somebody else to get a chance,” Rose concluded.
The Monetary Award Program provides grants, which do not need to be repaid, to Illinois residents who attend approved Illinois colleges and demonstrate financial need, based on the information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®).
For more information on MAP grants, visit: http://www.isac.org/students/during-college/types-of-financial-aid/grants/monetary-award-program.html