8:14am

Mon January 23, 2012
Hope Scholarships Could See 50% Cuts

Scholarship Cuts Hot Legislative Topic

NASHVILLE,‭ ‬Tenn.‭ (‬AP‭) — ‬A proposal to cut some students‭' ‬lottery scholarships in half is a hot topic this legislative session.

The plan,‭ ‬suggested by a panel of state lawmakers,‭ ‬would reduce by‭ ‬50‭ ‬percent the lottery scholarship awards for students who do not meet both standardized testing and high school grade requirements.

Right now,‭ ‬students can get a scholarship worth‭ ‬$4,000‭ ‬for each of four years if they either earn a‭ ‬3.0‭ ‬grade point average in high school or score a‭ ‬21‭ ‬on their ACT college entrance exam.

The plan is estimated to generate about‭ ‬$13‭ ‬million in savings the first year and‭ ‬$17‭ ‬million each year thereafter.

But opponents of the plan say it's unnecessary because the lottery scholarship program currently has nearly‭ ‬$400‭ ‬million in reserves and tickets for the Tennessee Lottery's popular Powerball game have increased.by a dollar,‭ ‬which will likely mean additional revenue.