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Missouri Increases State Aid For Low-Income College Students

Sam Zeff

Low-income college students got some good news Wednesday from Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon.

Nixon announced additional money will be directed toward the need-based Access Missouri scholarship program.

At a news conference on the University of Missouri-Kansas City campus, the governor said Access Missouri serves about 50,000 students at both two- year and four-year institutions.

The additional money will not substantially increase the number of scholarships, but will put more money into the pockets of current recipients.

"The less debt students take on, the more they can spend on making their own down payment on a house or even starting their own business, generating economic activity that will yield big returns for our communities now for years to come," Nixon said.

The maximum award for students at four-year institutions will increase 23 percent — from $1,500 a year to $1,850. At two-year schools, the award could jump 30 percent — from $660 to $850.

Nixon says the state is able to put a little more money into Access Missouri scholarships because revenue exceeded projections.

"It's about increasing the support that they get because we're trying to provide as many gap-closers as we can for our students," says UMKC Chancellor Leo Morton.

You deserve to know what your taxpayer dollars are paying for and what public officials are doing on your behalf – I’ll work to report on irresponsible government spending in the Kansas City area and shed light on controversies that slow government down. And when you hear my voice in the morning, you know you’re getting everything you need to start your day. Email me at sam@kcur.org, find me on Twitter @samzeff or call me at 816-235-5004.
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