Bill would change General Assembly scholarship provisions
From press release
SPRINGFIELD, Ill.—Feb. 24, the Illinois Senate approved legislation targeting the state’s controversial legislative scholarship program. The program came under fire after media reports revealed that General Assembly scholarships had been awarded to students of campaign contributors or influential acquaintances.
Senate Bill 365 would allow a legislator to opt out of the legislative scholarship program. The measure also prohibits a legislator from nominating a person for a scholarship if that person or an immediate family member has made a campaign contribution to the lawmaker who would award the scholarship at any time during the last five years. The bill also requires the individual nominated to have already been admitted to a state-supported university.
A number of lawmakers argued the program should be eliminated completely to avoid future improprieties, though many noted this was an adequate first step. However, opponents of the legislation contended the scholarships provide a much-needed opportunity for students who would not otherwise have the opportunity to attend college.
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