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05/23/2024 06:25 PM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: November 15, 2023 11:26 AM
From: Representative Jordan A. Harris
To: All House members
Subject: Pennsylvania Promise Pilot Program
In the near future I plan to reintroduce the Pennsylvania Promise Pilot Program Act, that will improve college access and affordability for Pennsylvania students.

This legislation will remove substantial financial burdens on students and their families and make college more affordable for students attending one of Pennsylvania’s community colleges, state system universities, and state-related institutions.

The Pennsylvania Promise Pilot Program (4P) will be administered by the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).  Under this proposal, if a student has a total annual household income of $200,000 or less and is a full-time student attending one of the Commonwealth’s state-owned or state-related institutions, the student would be eligible for “last dollar assistance.”  “Last dollar assistance” is provided only after all federal, state and institutional assistance is applied to the student’s account.  4P would cover the costs remaining after all federal and state assistance is applied.  If a student is enrolled at one of the Commonwealth’s community colleges, the student would be eligible for assistance regardless of the student’s household income.  For students whose family income is $60,000 or less, 4P would provide assistance for costs associated with room and board.
Similar last dollar scholarship programs have been enacted in 30 states, including Maryland, New York, Hawaii, Oregon, Rhode Island, Montana, Minnesota, Kentucky, Arkansas, Nevada, West Virginia, Indiana and Washington.

Additionally, this legislation provides dedicated grants to adult learners who are seeking additional credentials, including certification and college credit. The legislation will also dedicate funding to improve college access and opportunity for low and middle-income students.
Finally, this legislation includes an initial appropriation of $225,000,000 from the General Fund. 
Together we can improve college access and affordability, reduce the financial burden on Pennsylvania’s students and their families, and provide support for our community colleges and state system and state-related universities.

I hope you will join me in sponsoring this important legislation.

Please contact Chris Fetterman (cfetterman@hacd.net) in my office if you have any questions.

Introduced as HB1886