Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
For Immediate Release: February 19, 2009
Senator Mary Easley
Bill to Increase Income Level for OHLAP
Approved in Committee
More of Oklahoma's students could have the opportunity
to pursue a higher education thanks to a measure approved Wednesday
by the Senate Appropriations Committee. Sen. Mary
Easley is author of Senate Bill 471 which would increase the
income eligibility level for the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access
Program (OHLAP), also known as Oklahoma’s Promise.
"One of the best ways to spur economic growth and attract
more industries and businesses to our state is to have more college
graduates, and this bill will make that happen," said Easley,
D-Tulsa. "By making this small change in the income requirement,
we're going to be able to help thousands more students reach their
dream of getting a college degree."
Currently, in order to be eligible for the program a student’s
parents can make no more than $50,000 a year, but SB 471 would
increase that to $75,000.
“Expanding the program would offer more educational opportunities
to Oklahoma’s middle class by making 75 percent of Oklahoma’s
high school students eligible for the tuition scholarship program,”
said Easley. “Education is the greatest gift you can give
a person. It’s a gift that has been given to so many of
Oklahoma’s students through this tremendous program, and
now it’s time that we help even more of our students reach
their full potential.”
The bill was also amended to allow the income requirement to be
based on a family’s yearly salary or a three-year average.
Easley explained the change was necessary for those families whose
incomes are so close to the maximum amount that if they happen
to make more than normal during a year their child would become
ineligible. By doing a three-year average of the family income
that type of situation is less likely to occur.
SB 471 will next be considered by the full Senate.
For more information contact:
Sen. Easley's Office: 405-521-5590