CHAPTER 472

FORMERLY

HOUSE BILL NO. 1076

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTERS 34, 36, AND 55, TITLE 14, DELAWARE CODE, RELATING TO HIGHER EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIPS AND THEIR ADMINISTRATION.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend Chapter 34, Title 14, of the Delaware Code by striking the Chapter in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new Chapter 34 to read as follows:

"CHAPTER 34. HIGHER EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIPS §3401. Purpose

It is the intent and purpose of the General Assembly through this Chapter to:

(a) provide financial aid to Delaware residents with demonstrated financial need so that within the limits of the fiscal capabilities of the State they shall not be denied an opportunity for a college education because of financial need; and

(b) encourage qualified Delaware students to pursue courses of graduate and professional education when such courses are unavailable in State supported institutions and when such pursuit is deemed in the best interest of the State.

§3402. Administration

(a) This Chapter shall be administered by the Delaware Postsecondary Education Commission, hereinafter referred to as the 'Commission'.

(b) The Commission shall adopt such rules and regulations as it deems necessary and proper to the administration of this Chapter.

(c) The Commission shall receive and administer Federal funds under the State Student Incentive Grant Program or SSIG (P.L. 89-329) and State funds appropriated from the General Fund for the purposes set forth in this Chapter.

(d) The Commission may apply for and receive such funds as may be available to the State from any agency of the Federal government as grants-in-aid for student financial assistance at the postsecondary level. All such monies shall be paid into the State Treasury for use of the Commission and may be used only for the purpose for which they were granted.

§3403. Postsecondary Scholarship Fund

The General Assembly shall each year in the Budget Act appropriate a sum to be known as the Postsecondary Education Scholarship Fund for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Chapter.

Beginning with the Fiscal Year 1979, the Postsecondary Education Scholarship Fund shall be the combined sum of funds for SSIG matching appropriated to the Delaware Higher Education Loan Program, and funds for Higher Education Scholarships appropriated to the Department of Public Instruction. Such funds shall be transferred from the respective agency accounts to the scholarship account of the Commission. The transfer of funds and authorities among the agencies involved shall take place as soon as possible at a time and sequence determined by the Commission to be most appropriate for an efficient transition, but not later than January 15, 1979.

§3404. Grants

(a) The Commission is hereby authorized to award grants from the Postsecondary Education Scholarship Fund subject to the limits of its appropriations.

(b) Such grants shall be provided as grants for undergraduate education, and graduate and professional scholarships.

(c) Grants awarded as grants for undergraduate education shall be subject to the following limitations:

(1) No student shall be eligible for such grant who was not a resident of the State for at least one year immediately prior to the approval of the award. The place of residence of a student who is either under 18 years of age or dependent on parental financial support shall be the legal residence of his parent or guardian who must have qualified as a registered voter in Delaware and who is subject to payment of Delaware income tax. A student over 18 years of age, who is not dependent on parental financial support must meet the Federal government's financial self-supporting student definition, and must have qualified as a registered voter in Delaware and must be subject to the payment of Delaware Income Tax, to satisfy the requirement of this section.

(2) Grants shall be awarded only to persons who have been accepted as full-time students to pursue programs of study leading to an associate or baccalaureate degree at a college or university which is accredited by one of the regional accrediting associations.

(3) Grants shall be awarded only to persons who: (1) are attending educational institutions in states which have established scholarship reciprocity agreements with the State of Delaware and the Commission; or (ii) are attending educational

institutions in states which have not established scholarship reciprocity agreements with the State of Delaware and the Commission and are enrolled in a program of study which is not offered by a publicly supported institution in the State of Delaware.

(4) Grants shall be awarded on the basis of financial need as determined by one of the federally approved needs analysis systems. The amount of each grant shall be related to the student's financial circumstances, the expense of attending the institutions selected and the student's eligibility for other forms of financial aid. The Commission shall determine the amount of each scholarship grant but in no case shall it exceed $1,000 annually to any one student attending a college or university located within the State of Delaware. For students attending a college or university in a reciprocating state, the grant shall not exceed the amount allowable for out-of-state grants under the grant program of that State, and in no case shall be more than $700. For students enrolled in colleges or universities in non-reciprocating states in courses of study not offered at Delaware's publicly supported colleges the grants shall not exceed $700 annually to any one student.

(5) The Commission shall publish annually in two newspapers of general circulation within the State a prominent announcement of application deadlines for the scholarship fund. The Commission shall provide applications and a notice of application deadlines and rules and regulations to every high school in the State and to financial aid officers at postsecondary institutions in the State.

(6) Payment of funds shall be made on a semester or quarter basis to institutions only, not to individual scholarship recipients, upon receipt of a bill from the institution certifying that the student is enrolled full-time in a degree program. The enrolling institutions shall be required to report the withdrawal or dismissal of any student holding a grant awarded under this Chapter and make restitution to the fund of same not utilized for the purpose intended.

(7) Grants are renewable upon reapplication provided that the applicant continues to meet the qualifications required by this Chapter.

(d) Grants awarded as graduate and professional scholarships shall be subject to the following limitations:

(1) No student shall be eligible for such scholarship grant who was not a resident of the State for at least one year immediately prior to the approval of the award. The place of residence of a student who is either under 18 years of age or dependent on parental financial support shall be the legal residence of his parent or guardian who must have

qualified as a registered voter in Delaware and who is subject to payment of Delaware income tax. A student over 18 years of age, who is not dependent on parental financial support must have qualified as a registered voter in Delaware and must be subject to the payment of Delaware income tax to satisfy the requirement of this section.

(2) Scholarship grants shall be awarded only to persons who have been accepted as full-time students to pursue programs of study leading to a graduate or professional degree at a college or university which is accredited by one of the regional accrediting associations. No scholarships shall be granted to a student to pursue a course of study when such course of study is available at one of the public institutions of the State of Delaware.

(3) Scholarships shall be limited to those fields of study leading to occupations or professions for which there is reasonable expectation of job opportunity in the State of Delaware upon completion of such study. Among those programs for which scholarships may be awarded are Architecture, Dentistry, Law, Medicine, Optometry, Chiropractic, Social Work, Veterinary Medicine, and such other professional and graduate programs as in the opinion of the Commission fall within the spirit and letter of the Act.

(4) Scholarships shall be awarded on the basis of academic qualification and financial need. The amount of each scholarship shall be determined by the Commission and shall relate to the student's financial circumstances and the expense of attending the institution selected, but in no case shall the scholarship exceed $1,000 annually to any one student.

(5) The Commission shall publish annually in two newspapers of general circulation within the State a prominent announcement of application deadlines for the scholarship fund.

(6) Payment of funds shall be made on a semester or quarter basis to institutions only, not to individual grant recipients, upon receipt of a bill from the institution certifying that the student is enrolled full-time in a degree program. The enrolling inetitutions shall be required to report the withdrawal or dismissal of any student holding a scholarship grant awarded under this Chapter and make restitution to the fund of same not utilized for the purpose intended.

(7) Scholarships are renewable upon reapplication provided that the applicant continues to meet the qualifications required by this Chapter.

§3405. Scholarship Advisory Council

There shall be a Scholarship Advisory Council to the Commission

composed of financial aid officers from each State approved college in Delaware, designated by the president of each college. The Advisory Council shall assist the Commission in the administration of this Chapter in such manner as the Commission shall determine."

Section 2. Amend 63606, Chapter 36, Title 14, Delaware Code, by striking said section and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"§3606. Administration of Chapter

This Chapter shall be administered by the Delaware Postsecondary Education Commission, hereinafter referred to as the Commission, which shall annually report to the General Assembly of the State the number of recipients of benefits, their names and addresses, the names of the institutions attended, the amounts of the individual benefits granted, and total expenditures made under this Chapter.

The transfer of funds and authorities of this Chapter between the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Commission shall take place as soon as possible at a time determined by the Commission to be most appropriate for an efficient transition, but not later than January 15, 1979."

Section 3. Amend §5530, Chapter 55, Title 14, Delaware Code, by striking the words "State Board of Education" in subsection (a) and substituting the words "Delaware Postsecondary Education Commission hereinafter referred to as the 'Commission", and by striking all other references to "State Board of Education" in Chapter 55 and substituting in lieu thereof the word "Commission".

Section 4. This Act shall become effective January 15, 1979.

Approved July 11, 1978.