A bill that would provide up to $5,000 in college scholarships for high-school students in Kentucky's coal-producing counties has passed the state House.
Lawmakers voted 92 to 0 in support of the bill. It would establish the Kentucky Coal County College Completion Program, which would promote bachelor’s degree attainment for students in Eastern and Western Kentucky.
The plan will use about $4 million in coal-severance funds set aside in Gov. Steve Beshear’s proposed budget.
But Senate President Robert Stivers says funding the program will be a challenge if it continues to grow.
“When it started out, it was only gonna be one or two, well, maybe about a half dozen counties and only one institution," Stivers says. "As I understand it it’s been broadened to many coalfield counties and many institutions. The biggest question now becomes the ability to fund it.”
The bill now heads to the Senate.