Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SB2426
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Full Text of SB2426  103rd General Assembly




SB2426 EngrossedLRB103 30819 RJT 57315 b

1    AN ACT concerning education.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 5. The Higher Education Student Assistance Act is
5amended by changing Section 62 as follows:
6    (110 ILCS 947/62)
7    Sec. 62. Grants for exonerated persons.
8    (a) In this Section:
9    "Dependent" means any spouse, natural child, legally
10adopted child, or child in the legal custody of an individual.
11    "Exonerated person" means an individual who has received a
12pardon from the Governor of the State of Illinois stating that
13such a pardon is issued on the grounds of innocence of the
14crime for which he or she was imprisoned or an individual who
15has received a certificate of innocence from a circuit court
16pursuant to Section 2-702 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
17    "Satisfactory academic progress" means the qualified
18applicant's maintenance of minimum standards of academic
19performance, consistent with requirements for maintaining
20federal financial aid eligibility, as determined by the
21institution of higher learning.
22    (b) Subject to a separate appropriation for this purpose,
23the Commission shall, each year, receive and consider



SB2426 Engrossed- 2 -LRB103 30819 RJT 57315 b

1applications for grant assistance under this Section.
2Recipients of grants issued by the Commission in accordance
3with this Section must be exonerated persons or, as described
4in subsection (c-1) of this Section, their dependents.
5Provided that the recipient is maintaining satisfactory
6academic progress, the funds from the grant may be used to pay
7up to 8 semesters or 12 quarters of full payment of tuition and
8mandatory fees at any public university or public community
9college located in this State for either full or part-time
10study. This benefit may be used for undergraduate or graduate
12    In addition, an exonerated person or, as described in
13subsection (c-1) of this Section, a dependent who has not yet
14received a high school diploma or a State of Illinois High
15School Diploma and completes a high school equivalency
16preparation course through an Illinois Community College
17Board-approved provider may use grant funds to pay costs
18associated with obtaining a State of Illinois High School
19Diploma, including payment of the cost of the high school
20equivalency test and up to one retest on each test module, and
21any additional fees that may be required in order to obtain a
22State of Illinois High School Diploma or an official
23transcript of test scores after successful completion of the
24high school equivalency test.
25    (c) An applicant for a grant under this Section need not
26demonstrate financial need to qualify for the benefits and



SB2426 Engrossed- 3 -LRB103 30819 RJT 57315 b

1need not be an resident of the State at the time of enrollment.
2    (c-1) Beginning no later than the 2024-2025 academic year,
3if an exonerated person has been found by the Commission to
4qualify for a grant under this Section, and that person has not
5yet exhausted his or her eligibility for assistance described
6in subsection (b), the exonerated person may designate one or
7more dependents to use any unexpended portion of the
8exonerated person's eligibility, up to the total benefit for
9which the exonerated person is eligible. The combined benefits
10used by the exonerated person and any designated dependents
11may not exceed the total benefit for which the exonerated
12person is eligible. If funding is insufficient to serve all
13applicants, the Commission may prioritize applicants who have
14been exonerated over applicants who are dependents of
15exonerated individuals.
16    (d) The Commission may adopt any rules necessary to
17implement and administer this Section.
18(Source: P.A. 102-1100, eff. 1-1-23.)