The Norman Transcript

Editorials

March 6, 2013

Penny wise, pound foolish

NORMAN — Oklahoma lawmakers are starting to work against themselves. At a time when the governor and others are encouraging more college graduates, the legislature has raised the income limit for one of the most successful college scholarship programs.

House members on Monday lowered the family income eligibility for the 21-year-old Oklahoma’s Promise program from $100,000 per year to $60,000 per year, effectively shutting out about 500 students a year.

State officials say about 20,000 students are enrolled in the scholarship program. It’s been far more successful than legislators envisioned years ago.

Students who sign up in middle school, make good grades and stay out of trouble get a respectable scholarship to Oklahoma schools.The House voted 72-29 to raise the eligibility.

It costs the state about $63 million. The reduction will save about $1.7 million. Oklahoma’s Promise is not voted on each year, since the program is funded before the appropriations process.

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