Sponsor: Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D)
Summary: Deems a public or private postsecondary institution that is accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education eligible for initial and renewable Title 38 awards if the institution has a 3 year cohort default rate less than 15.5% and a graduation rate of greater than 30% for students taking 150% or less of the expected time to complete degree requirements, and satisfies the other criteria for qualification for Title 38 awards.
Deems a private postsecondary institution that does not meet the cohort default rate or graduation rate requirement, but that is accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education, eligible for initial and renewable Title 38 awards if the institution is issued an approval to operate from the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education and satisfies the other criteria for qualification for Title 38 awards.
Requires the California State Approving Agency for Veterans Education to certify by November 1 of each year a public or private institution’s latest 3 year cohort default rate and graduation rate as most recently reported by the United States Department of Education and a private postsecondary institution’s approval to operate issued by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education if that private postsecondary institution fails to satisfy the cohort default rate or graduation rate requirement. Requires the California State Approving Agency for Veterans Education to notify initial Title 38 recipients seeking to attend, or attending, an institution that is ineligible for initial and renewable Title 38 awards that the institution is ineligible for Title 38 awards for the academic year. Requires the California State Approving Agency for Veterans Education to provide initial and renewable Title 38 recipients at an ineligible institution with a complete list of all California postsecondary institutions at which the student would be eligible to receive a Title 38 award.
Amendment #1 (4/10/2014): http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/13-14/bill/asm/ab_2051-2100/ab_2099_bill_20140410_amended_asm_v98.pdf
Status: Introduced 2/20/2014. Referred to Assembly Higher Education Committee 3/3/2014. Withdrawn, amended, re-referred to Assembly Higher Education Committee 4/10/2014. Hearing held, reported; re-referred to Assembly Committee on Appropriations 4/22/2014.
Outlook: During the April 22 hearing, the Assembly Higher Education Committee recommended this measure for passage 9-0. This measure will next be referred to the Assembly Committee on Appropriations for consideration. As this measure contains fiscal provisions it must be approved by the Appropriations Committee before it may be considered by the full chamber. Per Joint Rule 61(b)(5), the committee has by May 2 to act on this measure.
During the hearing, Assembly Member Kristin Olsen (R), who did not vote in committee, expressed how concerned she was with the measure limiting choice and access for active military personnel. Registering in support of this measure were numerous veteran and education organizations, including: American Legion, AMVETS, California Association of County Veterans Service Officer, California Labor Federation, California State Commanders Veterans Council, Center for Public Interest Law (CPIL) at the University of San Diego School of Law, Children's Advocacy Institute (CAI) at the University of San Diego School of Law, Consumers Union, Military Officers Association of America, California Council of Chapters, Public Advocates, The Institute for College Access and Success, VetJobs, Veterans Education Success, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Vietnam Veterans of America and Young Invincibles. Registering in opposition to the measure were representatives of the California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools, San Diego Chamber of Commerce and University of Phoenix.
This measure was withdrawn by the sponsor, amended and re-referred to the Assembly Higher Education Committee. The author's amendment clarifies the type of institutions eligible for Title 38 awards as well as expands the reporting process.
The Assembly Higher Education Committee is chaired by Assemblyman Das Williams (D). The sponsor is not a member of the committee of referral. Committees are not required to consider every measure referred to them. Per Joint Rule 61 (b)(6), the committee has by May 9 to act on this measure.
The sponsor is a member of the majority party but has not garnered the support of any cosponsors. The Democratic Party controls both legislative chambers as well as the Office of Governor.
In 2012, the United State Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee released a report examining taxpayer investments of billions of dollars into companies that operate for-profit colleges. The report found that these institutions have failed to make the necessary investment in services to help students succeed in school, such as tutors, counselors, academic advisors and job placement staff. The report also revealed that for-profit colleges employed nearly three recruiters for each support service employee and in some cases spent less on instructional cost than they spent on marketing and recruiting or made in profit. California A.B. 2099 was introduced by Freshman Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D) to help ensure veteran students find success at for-profit colleges.
“Every year the GI Bill helps thousands of veterans subsidize their college education and has been credited with the transformation of the middle class after World War II,” Assemblymember Frazier has stated. “While for-profit colleges can be a good choice for many non-traditional students, a number of companies have capitalized on the financial assistance that veterans receive.”
In the Assemblymember’s press release upon the introduction of A.B. 2099, Assemblymember Frazier claimed that most for-profit colleges set tuition above available financial aid and generally cost significantly more than comparable community colleges and state universities causing nearly 96% of students starting at a for-profit college to take on student loans. From the companies examined in the 2012 United State Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee report, 54% of students from 2008 to 2010 left the school, often times with high debt and without a certificate or a degree. “Many veteran students have left these colleges with outrageous debt and few marketable skills to obtain a job that pays a living wage. We have the opportunity to set reasonable standards that will produce a well-educated and well trained veteran workforce,” said Assemblymember Frazier upon introducing the measure. “Our veterans deserve to be treated with respect and provided a high quality education from the college they attend.” A.B. 2099 represents the first effort by the legislature to enact this type of measure.
*Information provided by www.stateside.com