2021 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Hopson, Polk, Parks, DeBar, Simmons (13th), Williams
AN ACT MAKING AN APPROPRIATION TO THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF STATE INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER LEARNING FOR THE SUPPORT AND MAINTENANCE OF FINANCIAL AID SCHOLARSHIP, LOAN AND GRANT PROGRAMS AND THE MISSISSIPPI OFFICE OF STUDENT FINANCIAL AID, FOR FISCAL YEAR 2022.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The following sum, or so much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated out of any money in the State General Fund not otherwise appropriated, to the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning for the support and maintenance of financial aid scholarship, loan and grant programs authorized by law and administered by the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid and for support of the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid, for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2021, and ending June 30, 2022.... $ 47,107,957.00.
SECTION 2. The following sum, or so much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby authorized out of the proceeds derived from any federal funds, grants, donations, fees, or other special source funds which are collected by or otherwise become available for the support and maintenance of financial aid scholarship, loan and grant programs authorized by law including funds used as federal matching funds for the GEAR UP Mississippi Scholarship Program and administered by the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid and for support of the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid, for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2021, and ending June 30, 2022 $ 3,336,000.00.
SECTION 3. None of the funds appropriated in this act shall be paid to or for the benefit of any student who applies for the first time, subsequent to July 1, 2021, for assistance through the Assistant Teacher Forgivable Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-35, the Southeast Asia POW/MIA Grant established under the provisions of Section 37-106-41, the Public Management Graduate Internship established under the provisions of Section 37-106-43, the State Medical Education Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-61, the State Dental Education Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-63, the Graduate and Professional Degree Forgivable Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-65, the Health Care Professions Forgivable Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-67, or the Family Protection Specialist Social Worker Forgivable Loan established under the provisions of Section 37-106-69.
SECTION 4. It is the intention of the Legislature that of the funds appropriated under the provisions of Section 1, the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning shall expend from the support of the out-of-state graduate and professional studies program an amount not exceeding the funding necessary, contingent upon the availability of qualified applicants, for nine (9) new entering optometry students and the number of returning optometry students who received funding under the program during the preceding school year.
SECTION 5. In the allocation of funds appropriated under the provisions of Sections 1 and 2, among the student financial aid programs included herein, it is the intention of the Legislature that priority shall be given and funds shall be first allocated to all students eligible for financial aid under the provisions of Section 37-106-39, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 6. All funds provided for in this act shall be accounted for in an annual report, which shall be submitted at the next regular session of the Legislature within ten (10) days after the convening thereof. The report should detail for each grant, scholarship, or loan program the number of recipients, the total amount of awards made, and the average award amount. The report shall include the number of students at each institution receiving financial assistance and the amount of such assistance. For loan programs, the report shall also include a summary of the repayment status and method of repayment for student cohorts as well as an accounting of the receipt of funds in repayment. Furthermore, all funds received and expended shall be reported and otherwise accounted for in accordance with the provisions of Section 37-106-11, Mississippi Code of 1972, except where individual identifying information must be withheld pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), 20 USC Section 1232g 34 CFR Part 99.
No public or private institution of higher learning receiving funds under the respective provisions of this act, for the purpose of issuing scholarship grants or loans, shall issue any official transcripts for any persons who have any amount of repayment in arrears on the date such official transcript is requested.
SECTION 7. It is the intention of the Legislature that the agency's budget request for Fiscal Year 2023 shall be submitted to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee in a format and level of detail comparable to the format and level of detail provided during the Fiscal Year 2022 budget request process.
SECTION 8. Any funds appropriated pursuant to this act and paid as a fee to or deposited in a financial institution shall be in compliance with Section 109 of the Constitution of the State of Mississippi and Section 25-4-105, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 9. It is the intention of the Legislature that whenever two (2) or more bids are received by this agency for the purchase of commodities or equipment, and whenever all things stated in such received bids are equal with respect to price, quality and service, the Mississippi Industries for the Blind shall be given preference. A similar preference shall be given to the Mississippi Industries for the Blind whenever purchases are made without competitive bids.
SECTION 10. Of the funds appropriated in Section 1, an amount not to exceed Seventy Thousand Dollars ($70,000.00) is provided for the Speech-Language Pathologists Loan Forgiveness Program established under the provisions of Section 37-106-73, Mississippi Code of 1972, and administered by the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid.
SECTION 11. Awards for the Higher Education Legislative Plan Grant Program, authorized by Section 37-106-75, shall be made to applicants meeting all program requirements and found to be in financial need according to the following definition:
(a) The family has one (1) child under the age of twenty-one (21), and the annual adjusted gross income of the family is less than Thirty-nine Thousand Five Hundred Dollars ($39,500.00); or
(b) The family has annual adjusted gross income of less than Thirty-nine Thousand Five Hundred Dollars ($39,500.00) plus Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) for each additional child under the age of twenty-one (21).
SECTION 12. Of the funds appropriated in Section 2, Two Million Dollars ($2,000,000.00) shall be derived from funds in the Education Enhancement Fund deposited pursuant to Sections 27-65-75 and 27-67-31 Mississippi Code of 1972. This amount shall be used for the William F. Winter and Jack Reed, Sr. Teacher Loan Repayment Program, HB 1179 2021 Regular Session.
SECTION 13. It is the intention of the Legislature that no student should receive undergraduate grant aid through more than one state-supported undergraduate grant program in the same term of enrollment. If a student is eligible for aid through multiple grant programs, the student shall be awarded from the program that awards the larger sum.
SECTION 14. It is the intention of the Legislature that all students must demonstrate eligibility at the conclusion of each term during the regular academic year in order to continue to receive state-supported aid.
SECTION 15. The money herein appropriated shall be paid by the State Treasurer out of any money in the State Treasury to the credit of the proper fund or funds as set forth in this act, upon warrants issued by the State Fiscal Officer; and the State Fiscal Officer shall issue his warrants upon requisitions signed by the proper person, officer or officers, in the manner provided by law.
SECTION 16. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2021.