HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 756        FILED ON: 1/14/2019

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1211


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Sean Garballey and Natalie M. Higgins


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
Court assembled:

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act to establish a finish line grant program to encourage college completion.






Sean Garballey

23rd Middlesex

Natalie M. Higgins

4th Worcester

Mary S. Keefe

15th Worcester

Aaron Vega

5th Hampden

Michael O. Moore

Second Worcester

Stephan Hay

3rd Worcester

Bud L. Williams

11th Hampden

Rebecca L. Rausch

Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex

Mindy Domb

3rd Hampshire

James B. Eldridge

Middlesex and Worcester

Jack Patrick Lewis

7th Middlesex

James K. Hawkins

2nd Bristol

HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 756        FILED ON: 1/14/2019

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1211

By Representatives Garballey of Arlington and Higgins of Leominster, a petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 1211) of Sean Garballey, Natalie M. Higgins and others for legislation to provide scholarships for the cost of tuition and fees for certain non-first year students at public colleges or universities.  Higher Education.


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the One Hundred and Ninety-First General Court



An Act to establish a finish line grant program to encourage college completion.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

Chapter 15A of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting, after section 16, the following new section:-

Section 16A. There shall be a Finish Line Grant Program to provide scholarships to cover the entire cost of tuition and fees for one year other than the first, in a program leading to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree at a Massachusetts public college or university. The scholarships will be available to residents of the Commonwealth in need of financial assistance whose family income is less than one hundred seventy five percent of median family income in Massachusetts.

The Department of Higher Education shall establish guidelines governing said program, which shall include but not be limited to eligibility requirements, selection criteria (such as acceptable grades and an academic plan for timely degree completion), and other guidelines designed to help meet the department’s goals, such as increasing overall student success and graduation rates, and lowering achievement gaps for high-risk students; provided, further, that no funds from this scholarship program may be used to pay the tuition or fees for any course or program offered or administered by a non-public entity and that no student shall be eligible to receive a scholarship from this program more than one time.

The funds for the program are meant to supplement and not supplant existing scholarship funds; funds for this program shall not be derived from existing financial aid programs the Commonwealth administers.

The department shall provide the Joint Committee on Higher Education of the General Court a report analyzing the usage, achievements and costs of this program, together with recommendations for its future, no later than 120 days following the program’s first year of operation.