SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (NEXSTAR) — Illinois college students may have one less expense in their budgets later this year.
A bill making its way through the Senate would require public colleges in Illinois to rent books and course materials to in-state students at no cost.
Sen. Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) wants to encourage students to stay in Illinois not just for college, but to settle down in the state after graduation. Bennett chairs the Senate Higher Education committee.
“We want to make sure that it’s a little bit cheaper to stay here in Illinois, and hopefully, stay there not just for their academic career, but to stay in work and raise their family as well,” Bennett said.
The College Board, a non-profit organization focused on higher education, estimates it would save students an average of 1,300 dollars per year.
Illinois State Board of Education data shows 48.4% of 2017 graduates who ended up attending a four-year university chose a school outside of Illinois.
The bill passed the committee 11-1 on Feb. 9th, with Sen. Omar Aquino (D-Chicago) being the lone no vote.