- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 7, 2015

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri students living in the U.S. illegally would not be able to receive state-funded scholarships under a budget proposal senators approved Tuesday.

The measure would also require public colleges to charge those students the international rate of tuition. Republicans have touted the bill as blocking limited state resources from going to those without legal immigration status, while it’s been decried by Democrats as hampering those students from seeking a college education.

Efforts by Democratic Sen. Jill Schupp, of Creve Coeur, to strip the budget bill of the spending restriction failed in a voice vote. Democrats argued the bill would unfairly ramp up education costs for immigrants brought to the country illegally by their parents.

“We are now penalizing them for something outside their control,” said Sen. Jason Holsman, D-Kansas City.

Lead Senate budget writer Republican Sen. Kurt Schaefer of Columbia urged lawmakers to vote against Schupp’s proposal.

Defeat of the amendment means the ban on state aid for immigrants without legal status has approval from both chambers, cementing it into the final $26 billion budget plan for next fiscal year.

The 25-8 vote for the higher education segment of the budget also guarantees between $12 million and $27.6 million more in performance-based funding for four-year and community colleges. An earlier Senate vote Tuesday will mean between $74 million and roughly $84 million more in basic aid for K-12 schools.

The exact increases will be hashed out between the House and Senate before the budget heads to Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon’s desk for approval.

The Legislature has until May 8 to finalize a spending plan.


Budget bills are HBs 1-13.


House: https://www.house.mo.gov


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