Home > 106th Congressional Bills > H.R. 974 (ih) To establish a program to afford high school graduates from the District of Columbia the benefits of in-State tuition at State colleges and universities outside the District of Columbia, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] %%Filena...

H.R. 974 (ih) To establish a program to afford high school graduates from the District of Columbia the benefits of in-State tuition at State colleges and universities outside the District of Columbia, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] %%Filena...


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        H.R.974

                       One Hundred Sixth Congress

                                 of the

                        United States of America


                          AT THE FIRST SESSION

         Begun and held at the City of Washington on Wednesday,
   the sixth day of January, one thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine


                                 An Act


 
To establish a program to afford high school graduates from the District 
   of Columbia the benefits of in-State tuition at State colleges and 
 universities outside the District of Columbia, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``District of Columbia College Access 
Act of 1999''.

SEC. 2. PURPOSE.

    It is the purpose of this Act to establish a program that enables 
college-bound residents of the District of Columbia to have greater 
choices among institutions of higher education.

SEC. 3. PUBLIC SCHOOL PROGRAM.

    (a) Grants.--
        (1) In general.--From amounts appropriated under subsection (i) 
    the Mayor shall award grants to eligible institutions that enroll 
    eligible students to pay the difference between the tuition and 
    fees charged for in-State students and the tuition and fees charged 
    for out-of-State students on behalf of each eligible student 
    enrolled in the eligible institution.
        (2) Maximum student amounts.--An eligible student shall have 
    paid on the student's behalf under this section--
            (A) not more than $10,000 for any 1 award year (as defined 
        in section 481 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
        1088)); and
            (B) a total of not more than $50,000.
        (3) Proration.--The Mayor shall prorate payments under this 
    section for students who attend an eligible institution on less 
    than a full-time basis.
    (b) Reduction for Insufficient Appropriations.--
        (1) In general.--If the funds appropriated pursuant to 
    subsection (i) for any fiscal year are insufficient to award a 
    grant in the amount determined under subsection (a) on behalf of 
    each eligible student enrolled in an eligible institution, then the 
    Mayor shall--
            (A) first, ratably reduce the amount of the tuition and fee 
        payment made on behalf of each eligible student who has not 
        received funds under this section for a preceding year; and
            (B) after making reductions under subparagraph (A), ratably 
        reduce the amount of the tuition and fee payments made on 
        behalf of all other eligible students.
        (2) Adjustments.--The Mayor may adjust the amount of tuition 
    and fee payments made under paragraph (1) based on--
            (A) the financial need of the eligible students to avoid 
        undue hardship to the eligible students; or
            (B) undue administrative burdens on the Mayor.
        (3) Further adjustments.--Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) and 
    (2), the Mayor may prioritize the making or amount of tuition and 
    fee payments under this subsection based on the income and need of 
    eligible students.
    (c) Definitions.--In this section:
        (1) Eligible institution.--The term ``eligible institution'' 
    means an institution that--
            (A) is a public institution of higher education located--
                (i) in the State of Maryland or the Commonwealth of 
            Virginia; or
                (ii) outside the State of Maryland or the Commonwealth 
            of Virginia, but only if the Mayor--

                    (I) determines that a significant number of 
                eligible students are experiencing difficulty in 
                gaining admission to any public institution of higher 
                education located in the State of Maryland or the 
                Commonwealth of Virginia because of any preference 
                afforded in-State residents by the institution;
                    (II) consults with the Committee on Government 
                Reform of the House of Representatives, the Committee 
                on Governmental Affairs of the Senate, and the 
                Secretary regarding expanding the program under this 
                section to include such institutions located outside of 
                the State of Maryland or the Commonwealth of Virginia; 
                and
                    (III) takes into consideration the projected cost 
                of the expansion and the potential effect of the 
                expansion on the amount of individual tuition and fee 
                payments made under this section in succeeding years;

            (B) is eligible to participate in the student financial 
        assistance programs under title IV of the Higher Education Act 
        of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070 et seq.); and
            (C) enters into an agreement with the Mayor containing such 
        conditions as the Mayor may specify, including a requirement 
        that the institution use the funds made available under this 
        section to supplement and not supplant assistance that 
        otherwise would be provided to eligible students from the 
        District of Columbia.
        (2) Eligible student.--The term ``eligible student'' means an 
    individual who--
            (A) was domiciled in the District of Columbia for not less 
        than the 12 consecutive months preceding the commencement of 
        the freshman year at an institution of higher education;
            (B) graduated from a secondary school or received the 
        recognized equivalent of a secondary school diploma on or after 
        January 1, 1998;
            (C) begins the individual's undergraduate course of study 
        within the three calendar years (excluding any period of 
        service on active duty in the Armed Forces, or service under 
        the Peace Corps Act (22 U.S.C. 2501 et seq.) or subtitle D of 
        title I of the National and Community Service Act of 1990 (42 
        U.S.C. 12571 et seq.)) of graduation from a secondary school, 
        or obtaining the recognized equivalent of a secondary school 
        diploma;
            (D) is enrolled or accepted for enrollment, on at least a 
        half-time basis, in a degree, certificate, or other program 
        (including a program of study abroad approved for credit by the 
        institution at which such student is enrolled) leading to a 
        recognized educational credential at an eligible institution;
            (E) if enrolled in an eligible institution, is maintaining 
        satisfactory progress in the course of study the student is 
        pursuing in accordance with section 484(c) of the Higher 
        Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1091(c)); and
            (F) has not completed the individual's first undergraduate 
        baccalaureate course of study.
        (3) Institution of higher education.--The term ``institution of 
    higher education'' has the meaning given the term in section 101 of 
    the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1001).
        (4) Mayor.--The term ``Mayor'' means the Mayor of the District 
    of Columbia.
        (5) Secondary school.--The term ``secondary school'' has the 
    meaning given that term under section 14101 of the Elementary and 
    Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 8801).
        (6) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
    Education.
    (d) Construction.--Nothing in this Act shall be construed to 
require an institution of higher education to alter the institution's 
admissions policies or standards in any manner to enable an eligible 
student to enroll in the institution.
    (e) Applications.--Each student desiring a tuition payment under 
this section shall submit an application to the eligible institution at 
such time, in such manner, and accompanied by such information as the 
eligible institution may require.
    (f) Administration of Program.--
        (1) In general.--The Mayor shall carry out the program under 
    this section in consultation with the Secretary. The Mayor may 
    enter into a grant, contract, or cooperative agreement with another 
    public or private entity to administer the program under this 
    section if the Mayor determines that doing so is a more efficient 
    way of carrying out the program.
        (2) Policies and procedures.--The Mayor, in consultation with 
    institutions of higher education eligible for participation in the 
    program authorized under this section, shall develop policies and 
    procedures for the administration of the program.
        (3) Memorandum of agreement.--The Mayor and the Secretary shall 
    enter into a Memorandum of Agreement that describes--
            (A) the manner in which the Mayor shall consult with the 
        Secretary with respect to administering the program under this 
        section; and
            (B) any technical or other assistance to be provided to the 
        Mayor by the Secretary for purposes of administering the 
        program under this section (which may include access to the 
        information in the common financial reporting form developed 
        under section 483 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 
        U.S.C. 1090)).
    (g) Mayor's Report.--The Mayor shall report to Congress annually 
regarding--
        (1) the number of eligible students attending each eligible 
    institution and the amount of the grant awards paid to those 
    institutions on behalf of the eligible students;
        (2) the extent, if any, to which a ratable reduction was made 
    in the amount of tuition and fee payments made on behalf of 
    eligible students; and
        (3) the progress in obtaining recognized academic credentials 
    of the cohort of eligible students for each year.
    (h) GAO Report.--Beginning on the date of the enactment of this 
Act, the Comptroller General of the United States shall monitor the 
effect of the program assisted under this section on educational 
opportunities for eligible students. The Comptroller General shall 
analyze whether eligible students had difficulty gaining admission to 
eligible institutions because of any preference afforded in-State 
residents by eligible institutions, and shall expeditiously report any 
findings regarding such difficulty to Congress and the Mayor. In 
addition the Comptroller General shall--
        (1) analyze the extent to which there are an insufficient 
    number of eligible institutions to which District of Columbia 
    students can gain admission, including admission aided by 
    assistance provided under this Act, due to--
            (A) caps on the number of out-of-State students the 
        institution will enroll;
            (B) significant barriers imposed by academic entrance 
        requirements (such as grade point average and standardized 
        scholastic admissions tests); and
            (C) absence of admission programs benefiting minority 
        students;
        (2) assess the impact of the program assisted under this Act on 
    enrollment at the University of the District of Columbia; and
        (3) report the findings of the analysis described in paragraph 
    (1) and the assessment described in paragraph (2) to Congress and 
    the Mayor.
    (i) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the District of Columbia to carry out this section 
$12,000,000 for fiscal year 2000 and such sums as may be necessary for 
each of the five succeeding fiscal years. Such funds shall remain 
available until expended.
    (j) Effective Date.--This section shall take effect with respect to 
payments for periods of instruction that begin on or after January 1, 
2000.

SEC. 4. ASSISTANCE TO THE UNIVERSITY OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

    (a) In General.--Subject to subsection (c), the Secretary may 
provide financial assistance to the University of the District of 
Columbia for the fiscal year to enable the university to carry out 
activities authorized under part B of title III of the Higher Education 
Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1060 et seq.).
    (b) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the District of Columbia to carry out this section 
$1,500,000 for fiscal year 2000 and such sums as may be necessary for 
each of the five succeeding fiscal years.
    (c) Special Rule.--For any fiscal year, the University of the 
District of Columbia may receive financial assistance pursuant to this 
section, or pursuant to part B of title III of the Higher Education Act 
of 1965, but not pursuant to both this section and such part B.

SEC. 5. PRIVATE SCHOOL PROGRAM.

    (a) Grants.--
        (1) In general.--From amounts appropriated under subsection (f) 
    the Mayor shall award grants to eligible institutions that enroll 
    eligible students to pay the cost of tuition and fees at the 
    eligible institutions on behalf of each eligible student enrolled 
    in an eligible institution. The Mayor may prescribe such 
    regulations as may be necessary to carry out this section.
        (2) Maximum student amounts.--An eligible student shall have 
    paid on the student's behalf under this section--
            (A) not more than $2,500 for any 1 award year (as defined 
        in section 481 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
        1088)); and
            (B) a total of not more than $12,500.
        (3) Proration.--The Mayor shall prorate payments under this 
    section for students who attend an eligible institution on less 
    than a full-time basis.
    (b) Reduction for Insufficient Appropriations.--
        (1) In general.--If the funds appropriated pursuant to 
    subsection (f) for any fiscal year are insufficient to award a 
    grant in the amount determined under subsection (a) on behalf of 
    each eligible student enrolled in an eligible institution, then the 
    Mayor shall--
            (A) first, ratably reduce the amount of the tuition and fee 
        payment made on behalf of each eligible student who has not 
        received funds under this section for a preceding year; and
            (B) after making reductions under subparagraph (A), ratably 
        reduce the amount of the tuition and fee payments made on 
        behalf of all other eligible students.
        (2) Adjustments.--The Mayor may adjust the amount of tuition 
    and fee payments made under paragraph (1) based on--
            (A) the financial need of the eligible students to avoid 
        undue hardship to the eligible students; or
            (B) undue administrative burdens on the Mayor.
        (3) Further adjustments.--Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) and 
    (2), the Mayor may prioritize the making or amount of tuition and 
    fee payments under this subsection based on the income and need of 
    eligible students.
    (c) Definitions.--In this section:
        (1) Eligible institution.--The term ``eligible institution'' 
    means an institution that--
            (A)(i) is a private, nonprofit, associate or baccalaureate 
        degree-granting, institution of higher education, as defined in 
        section 101(a) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
        1001(a)), the main campus of which is located--
                (I) in the District of Columbia;
                (II) in the city of Alexandria, Falls Church, or 
            Fairfax, or the county of Arlington or Fairfax, in the 
            Commonwealth of Virginia, or a political subdivision of the 
            Commonwealth of Virginia located within any such county; or
                (III) in the county of Montgomery or Prince George's in 
            the State of Maryland, or a political subdivision of the 
            State of Maryland located within any such county;
            (ii) is eligible to participate in the student financial 
        assistance programs under title IV of the Higher Education Act 
        of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070 et seq.); and
            (iii) enters into an agreement with the Mayor containing 
        such conditions as the Mayor may specify, including a 
        requirement that the institution use the funds made available 

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