Local Lawmakers Want Veterans to Get In-State Tuition

Florida Sen. Jack Latvala of Clearwater and Rep. Kathleen Peters of St. Petersburg want all military veterans to receive in-state tuition in Florida.

Florida Sen. Jack Latvala of Clearwater and Rep. Kathleen Peters of St. Petersburg have filed identical bills in the Florida legislature that would allow United States military veterans to receive in-state tuition at schools in the Florida College System or in-state universities. 

If the bill were to pass the Florida House and Senate, it would go into effect July 1.

According to the official filing, the bill "provides criteria for veterans of U.S. Armed Services, including reserve components thereof, to qualify as residents for tuition purposes."

“One of the greatest opportunities we can give those that are, have been and will be protecting our country and our freedoms is access to education without barriers that create undue hardship," said Bob Clifford, President and CEO of the Clearwater Regional Chamber, in a news release. "This bill sends a clear message of support to the men and women of our military."

According to Military.com, "The requirement would apply to state schools which have programs which are eligible for Department of Veterans Affairs education programs under the GI Bill. This move could help veterans save thousands in out-of-pocket tuition expenses."

The new law would also allow veterans who physically reside Florida while enrolled in an online course to receive in-state tuition. 

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