South Carolina Colleges’ Tuition Increase Complicates Lottery Scholarships
COLUMBIA, S.C.College tuition increases caused by a budget crunch could make it more difficult to decide how to spend lottery profits. With tuition at Clemson University scheduled to go up 42 percent, a broad disparity will be created between LIFE scholarships at Clemson compared with other public four-year colleges. The lottery legislation signed into law by Gov. Jim Hodges earlier this month calls for the lottery-funded scholarships at public four-year colleges to equal the full-time in-state tuition plus a $300-dollar-per-year book allowance. A Clemson student would receive $5,390, compared with $4,458 for a University of South Carolina student, according to the formula that will be used in the fall of 2002. The Clemson tuition increase also would add about $4.5 million to the cost of the scholarship program. State Sen. Tom Moore, D-Clearwater, a member of the lottery conference committee, says constituents are complaining that the LIFE scholarship formula would give students at one college a greater benefit than students at other institutions.Moore says the college tuition problem proves that the Legislature should not rush to finish the bill. He says the Legislature can continue to negotiate terms of the lottery spending plan when it returns in January, and still award the first scholarships in the fall of 2002. Sen. Larry Martin, R-Pickens, says lottery scholarship formulas need to be revisited to head off inequities between schools. Martin said some lawmakers have discussed a cap of about $4,800 for LIFE lottery-funded scholarships. Current LIFE recipients receive up to $3,000.
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