Gopal Bill to Provide Veterans In-State Tuition for Remote Instruction Clears the Senate

Trenton — The Senate today passed a bill that will provide in-State college tuition to a veteran or eligible members of his or her family attending classes remotely due to restrictions brought on by a public health emergency — regardless of the student’s state of residence.

 

“Given that the spread of coronavirus has forced many New Jersey colleges to adjust their schedules and to rely more on remote instruction, this bill will ensure that students who are veterans as well as certain members of their families will continue to be eligible for in-State tuition,” said Senator Vin Gopal (D-Monmouth), chair of the Military and Veteran Affairs Committee, and sponsor of the bill.

 

The bill, S-2553, would allow veterans and eligible “covered individuals” enrolled in state colleges and covered under the New Jersey Tuition Equality for America’s Military (NJTEAM) Act to continue to be eligible for in-State tuition, even if they are completing coursework through mandatory remote instruction. The bill would consider a veteran or family member who attends a public institution of higher education a “State resident” for the purposes of determining tuition, regardless of the veteran or covered individual’s current place of residence.

 

“During high-stress times and public health emergencies such as the one we’re now experiencing, veterans and their families should not have to worry about added costs as they enroll in college classes,” said Senator Gopal. “This bill will allay those concerns and allow veterans to concentrate on their coursework and assignments as they study, train and prepare for the next chapters in their lives.”

 

The bill was passed out of the Senate on October 29, 2020, by a vote of 34-0.