House Education Committee passes needs-based scholarship bill

PIERRE, S.D. (KJJQ) – The House Education Committee passed a bill 9-4 that would establish a needs-based scholarship in the state — the Dakota Promise Scholarship.

The bill was amended so it does not yet include any state funding. The idea had been to use up to one-million unobligated dollars at the end of the fiscal year. The money would be matched by the University’s receiving the funding.

Senator Jeff Partridge of Rapid City is the bill’s sponsor.

Representative Jess Olson of Rapid City says the cost of college has gone up so fast that Pell grants no longer cover it.

No one testified against the bill but during committee discussion, Representative Thomas Brunner of Nisland expressed his opposition.

The measure earlier passed easily through the Senate and now heads to the House floor.

It’s final fate could well be decided in Appropriations.