Colorado Republicans walked away from $4 million a year for higher education and failed thousands of students. The House education committee voted on party lines to kill Colorado ASSET which was projected to help hundreds of students a year afford a higher education while putting millions of dollars into the cash strapped higher education system.
It’s unfortunate that at a time when we should be encouraging greater access to college and improving Colorado’s economy with a better educated work force that the tuition equity bill died a partisan death in the Colorado House this week.
“Job creation, workforce development, and an educated populace shouldn’t be a partisan issue,” said Mateos Alvarez, President of SEIU Local 105. “This bill would have not only helped Colorado’s stagnant economy, but it would have helped these students on a path to citizenship,” he continued.
The reality is that tuition equity has tremendous benefits for Colorado, including fueling economic growth, decreasing reliance on public assistance, and building stronger communities. Some estimates show that had tuition equity passed, it would have infused the states budget with as much as $1.2 million in tuition fees alone. However, along straight party lines, Republican’s chose to punish hard working students that were not given a choice to immigrate to the US, and now are not given an affordable choice to earn a higher education.
“We will not give up on tuition equity,” said Alvarez. “This bill is good for Colorado, it’s good for Colorado businesses, and it’s good for the students looking for a path to citizenship and a brighter future,” he added.
"Disappointed cannot begin to describe how I feel about what Republicans have done to students across Colorado," began Kristee Paschall, chair of the Higher Education Access Alliance (HEAA) and Director of Operations of Metro Organizations for People (MOP).
"As an organization that works directly with students and understands the value of higher education its unfortunate Republicans are walking away from an addition $4 million a year for higher education," stated Jim Chavez Executive Director of the Latin American Education Foundation (LAEF) and a HEAA Steering Committee member.
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