Regents OK need-based grant for students at Iowa's universities

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The board that oversees Iowa’s universities approved on Thursday the creation of a state need-based grant, and the elimination of a controversial tuition-funded scholarship program.

The state grant would be paid for with $39.5 million from the Legislature, a plan that will be considered during the legislative session that begins in January. In return for the money, the board has said it will drop tuition for Iowans by an equal amount, an estimated $1,000.

If the Legislature funds the state grant program this spring, the tuition discount would take effect for the 2014-15 academic year, Board of Regents officials said.

The tuition-funded scholarships, also called tuition set-aside, earmarks about 20 percent of tuition paid by every student to scholarships for others. The policy was criticized this year by some Republican lawmakers as an unfair burden to middle-class Iowans.

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