State Representatives Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville) and Tim Brown (R-Bowling Green) today announced the passage of House Bill 484, legislation that modifies laws regarding the state’s colleges and universities, from the Ohio House of Representatives.

One of the many bills within the governor’s Mid-Biennial Review, House Bill 484 authorizes community colleges to create a tuition guarantee program, where schools establish a tuition cost for incoming freshmen with the promise that the costs will not increase over the course of the student’s time at the college. This bill includes new performance based funding formulas for both Ohio Community Colleges and Ohio Technical Centers that are based on student outcomes and attainment.

“HB 484 was a collaborative effort of the Higher Education Community,” said Rosenberger, who joint-sponsored the legislation with Rep. Brown. “It represents a benchmark that Ohio is trying to set for higher education as a whole. We continue in our attempt to provide greater access and attainment for all Ohioans.

“This bill encourages schools to strive for student success by rewarding student achievement. It also provides a framework to use innovative strategies to allow families to better prepare for the cost of higher education. Furthermore, we recognize the need for continued conversation and evaluation of our current programs with recommendations from the Higher Education Student Financial Workgroup.”

Additionally, the bill creates the Higher Education Student Financial Aid Workgroup to examine the range of student financial aid in Ohio and submit recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly by the end of this year. The workgroup consists of the Chancellor of the Board of Regents, members from several associations representing universities and community colleges, state legislators, and representatives from the Ohio Department of Veterans Services and the Ohio Association of Student Financial Aid Officers.

"I am pleased to co-sponsor a bill with such broad collaborative partners,” Brown said. “We worked with the governor's office, our community colleges, the Chancellor of the Board of Regents, and others to formulate initiatives that will benefit both students and our colleges and universities.  Our overall focus is on greater student graduation rates and outcomes, and this bill certainly helps."

HB 484 also repeals existing enrollment limits for the central campuses of Bowling Green State University, Kent State University, Miami University, Ohio University and The Ohio State University.

Finally, the legislation requires each state university, as well as the Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), to issue a report of its faculty workload policy and practices, and to submit recommendations to the Chancellor of the Board of Regents to modify those policies by June 30, 2017.

House Bill 484 now heads to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

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