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Public Act 101-0021


 

Public Act 0021 101ST GENERAL ASSEMBLY

  
  
  

 


 
Public Act 101-0021
 
HB2691 EnrolledLRB101 07754 AXK 52803 b

    AN ACT concerning education.
 
    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
represented in the General Assembly:
 
    Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
Retention of Illinois Students and Equity Act.
 
    Section 5. Findings. The General Assembly makes all of the
following findings:
        (1) The State of Illinois is committed to ensuring that
    all students who are residents of this State have
    meaningful and equitable access to higher educational
    opportunities notwithstanding the student's race, color,
    gender or gender identity, age, ancestry, marital status,
    military status, religion, pregnancy, national origin,
    disability status, sexual orientation, order of protection
    status, as defined under Section 1-103 of the Illinois
    Human Rights Act, or immigration status.
        (2) The State of Illinois is committed to ensuring that
    students who may not have had the same educational
    opportunities are not penalized as they seek to achieve
    higher education.
        (3) The State of Illinois is committed to ensuring the
    success and retention of African American students by
    safeguarding equitable access to educational funding and
    eliminating systemic barriers.
        (4) Lifting any caps on the Monetary Award Program,
    other than those required by State law, will have a
    positive impact on the retention and equity of African
    American students and other students of color who are
    disproportionately impacted by the lack of access to
    resources in completing their postsecondary education.
        (5) The State of Illinois is committed to retaining
    Illinois students who wish to attend institutions of higher
    learning in this State by addressing financial barriers for
    those students.
 
    Section 10. Definition. In this Act, "Illinois resident"
includes any person who is deemed an Illinois resident for
tuition purposes under State law.
 
    Section 15. Equitable eligibility for financial aid and
benefits.
    (a) A student who is an Illinois resident and who is not
otherwise eligible for federal financial aid, including, but
not limited to, a transgender student who is disqualified for
failure to register for selective service or a noncitizen
student who has not obtained lawful permanent residence, shall
be eligible for State financial aid and benefits as described
in subsection (b).
    (b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the
contrary, a student who is an Illinois resident (i) is eligible
to apply or receive consideration for any student aid or
benefit funded or administered by the State, any State agency,
or any public institution of higher learning, including, but
not limited to, scholarships, grants, awards, stipends, room
and board assistance, tuition waivers, or other financial or
in-kind assistance and (ii) to ensure equity, success, and the
retention of Illinois residents, may not be subject to any caps
on grant assistance available under the Monetary Award Program
other than those required by State law.
    (c) The eligibility requirements under this Section for any
student aid or benefit funded or administered by the State
shall be interpreted to promote the broadest eligibility for
students who are Illinois residents in accordance with State
law or policy.
    (d) Nothing in this Section shall be construed as modifying
any eligibility requirements regarding academic standing or
personal or household income for any State financial aid
program.
    (e) The General Assembly finds and declares that this
Section is a State law within the meaning of subsection (d) of
Section 1621 of Title 8 of the United States Code.
 
    Section 97. Severability. The provisions of this Act are
severable under Section 1.31 of the Statute on Statutes.

Effective Date: 1/1/2020