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The Bottom Line: House passes bills to improve financial aid access; approves key transportation funding

By Jacqueline Pitts, The Bottom Line

Rep. Regina Huff, R-Williamsburg.
Rep. Regina Huff, R-Williamsburg.

FRANKFORT, Ky. — A bill that would require high school students to complete Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) documents before graduation passed on the House floor Tuesday.

House Bill 87, legislation aiming to improve access to higher education, would provide awareness of costs and opportunities for aid when students consider continuing their education after high school.

Rep. Regina Huff, R-Williamsburg, the sponsor of House Bill 87, said the bill complements the requirement that students complete the ACT which is used by many universities as a part of the admissions process. She pointed out the bill allows for opt-outs should a student not want to complete the form but is needed so as many students as possible know what financial resources they have available should they want to continue their education.

The current FAFSA completion rate in Kentucky is less than 50 percent.

House Bill 87 now moves to the Senate.

House approves key transportation funding

Rep. Steven Rudy, R-Paducah.

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Bills to fund transportation projects across the commonwealth over the next two years sailed out of the House Appropriations and Revenue Committee Tuesday as the legislature hustles through its work in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

House Bill 353, which provides financing for the operations, maintenance, support, and functioning of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, was reported favorably by the committee Tuesday. Sponsored by Rep. Steven Rudy, R-Paducah, HB 353 outlines the funding for aviation, highways, public transportation, and vehicle regulation, among other state programs.

Also sponsored by Rep. Rudy, HB 354 received passage by the committee, which is the 2020-22 Biennial Highway Construction Plan. HB 354 details highway projects over the next two fiscal years by county and was passed with little debate.

Both bills now move to the House floor, where legislators will work quickly to get the two crucial transportation bills over to the Senate.

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