ASSEMBLY, No. 2481


with committee amendments






      The Assembly Education Committee favorably reports Assembly Bill No. 2481 with committee amendments.

      As amended, this bill requires county colleges, county vocational schools and county technical institutes to allow active members in good standing of a volunteer fire company, volunteer first aid or rescue squad or association, to enroll in a postsecondary program tuition-free on a space available basis and receive up to a maximum tuition credit of $4,000. Volunteers are required to register with the municipality in which the fire company, squad or association is located and sign an agreement pledging four years of volunteer service in exchange for the tuition credits. In addition, the volunteer is required to maintain a "C" grade in tuition credit classes and submit a copy of the transcript each semester to the municipality. Following each year of volunteer service performed, the individual or the dependent children or spouse of the volunteer may receive tuition credit of $1,000 up to a maximum of $4,000. In order to be eligible to receive the tuition credit, the volunteer has to verify to the institution that the service was performed by submitting a letter of eligibility provided by the participating municipality. The bill imposes a cap on the tuition credit earned of $4,000 over four years for the member, children and spouse collectively. No cost is associated with the bill because the volunteers and their dependents or spouses attend on a space available basis after the minimum number of tuition paying students required for the course have registered.

      The committee amended the bill to clarify that the maximum amount of $4,000 over a four-year period applied to the member, children and spouse collectively.