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ISAC State Legislative Update

Katharine Gricevich
Director of Government Relations
May 6, 2019

Below is information regarding current pending legislation in the Illinois General Assembly.  All bills included in this report relate to ISAC’s mission or operations.  The status of each bill is available by clicking on the bill number link.  The General Assembly is expected to adjourn the spring legislative session on May 31, 2019.

SB 1809 and HB 3364: MAP extension for teachers 

With regard to the Monetary Award Program (MAP), provides that, beginning with the 2019-2020 academic year, an applicant who is otherwise eligible for grant assistance under the Program may receive grant assistance for an additional academic year after receiving a baccalaureate degree or the equivalent of 135 semester credit hours if he or she (i) enrolls in a State-approved educator preparation program and (ii) within 7 years after receiving a Professional Educator License, teaches in this State for a minimum of 5 years. Provides that if at any time a person fails to meet these requirements, he or she must repay the amount of additional assistance received to the Commission. Effective immediately.

SB 1255

With regard to the Illinois Veteran Grant Program, provides that, beginning with the 2019-2020 academic year, a veteran may transfer his or her benefits to a qualified dependent if certain conditions are met; defines "qualified dependent". Provides that a veteran may transfer benefits to multiple qualified dependents; however, the total number of credit hours of assistance transferred may not exceed 120 credit hours, and a veteran may transfer benefits to only one qualified dependent at a time. Effective July 1, 2019.

SB 1641

Requires ISAC, in consultation with the Department of Human Services, to develop a notice that ISAC shall make available electronically to institutions of higher education that includes, at a minimum, college student Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility criteria, the Application for Benefits Eligibility's website address, and the Illinois Hunger Coalition's Hunger Hotline. Requires Illinois institutions of higher education that participate in MAP to provide the notice in writing to MAP-eligible students who are enrolled or accepted for enrollment.

SB 1167 – Community College Vocational Act

Requires ISAC to establish and administer an adult vocational community college scholarship program. Provides that beginning with the 2020-2021 academic year, the Commission shall, each year, receive and consider applications for scholarships to community colleges for people over the age of 30 who have been unemployed and are actively searching for employment and who can identify the specific training certificate, credential, or associate degree that he or she is seeking to obtain. Allows applicants to re-apply for the scholarship if they can demonstrate continual progress toward the desired certificate, credential, or degree. Provides that scholarships shall not exceed $2,000 per recipient per academic year. Allows the Commission to establish appropriate applications and forms. Requires the Commission to adopt all necessary and proper rules to implement the program.

HB 2691 – RISE Act

Creates the Retention of Illinois Students and Equity Act. Provides for legislative findings and a definition. Provides that, notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, a student attending an institution of higher learning in this State who is deemed an Illinois resident for tuition purposes and is not otherwise eligible to receive federal financial aid shall be eligible to apply or receive consideration for State financial aid, including any student aid or benefit funded or administered by the State, a State agency, or any public institution of higher learning, including, but not limited to, scholarships, grants, awards, stipends, free room and board, tuition waivers, or other financial or in-kind assistance.

SB 1524 and HB 2685 – Treasurer – Student Loan Investment Act

Creates the Illinois Student Loan Investment Act. Provides for the establishment, operation, and administration of the Student Investment Account by the State Treasurer. Provides that the State Treasurer shall establish fees to cover the costs of administration, recordkeeping, marketing, and investment management related to the Student Investment Account. Provides that the State Treasurer may charge and collect insurance premiums and deduct wages under the Act. Requires the State Treasurer to develop, publish, and implement one or more investment policies covering the investment of moneys under the Act. Provides for the creation and use of specified Funds to be held outside of the State Treasury with the State Treasurer as custodian. Provides for the adoption of rules. Amends the Deposit of State Moneys Act. Allows the State Treasurer to invest or reinvest State money in, among other items or purposes, investments made in accordance with the Student Loan Investment Act. Amends the Student Loan Servicing Rights Act. Provides that the term "student loan servicer" shall not include, among other entities, the State Treasurer and its agents when the agents are acting on the State Treasurer's behalf. Defines terms. Effective immediately.