New Bill Extends Education Assistance for Texas Vets

Tuition and fees exemptions for spouses and children

Paying for school is a significant burden for most people, but now Texas will be extending additional assistance for education to those who have risked their lives in service when they return.

Perry travelled to the University of San Antonio Thursday to for a ceremonial signing of two military bills, SB 297 and 93.

"Military service places unique demands on the men and women in uniform and their families, and as home to the second most active military duty families in the nation, Texas owes it to them to support their families and welcome them honorably when they return," Gov. Perry said. "Last year, I called on the legislature to extend in-state tuition rates to eligible veterans, and Senate Bill 297 not only grants that request, but also extends that benefit to the spouses and children of our eligible veterans, and waives tuition completely for the children of Texas residents who have been deployed."

Specifically, SB 297 provides in-state tuition for veterans, as well as their spouses and children. It also offers an exemption for dependent children with a parent deployed overseas.

SB 93 makes three changes to the Hazelwood Act, which allows eligible veterans, their children and spouses to receive an exemption from the payment of tuition and most fees for up to 150 semester credit hours of state-supported classes at colleges and universities:

1. Allows spouses to claim the Hazelwood Exemption (if their spouse for expressed reasons cannot)

2. Allows veterans who are eligible for the Hazelwood Exemption to waive their rights to unused hours and transfer them to their child.

3. Clarifies eligibility criteria for the Hazelwood Exemption.

Holly LaFon has written and worked for various local publications including D Magazine and Examiner.

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