MIKE TRYON ON COLLEGE AFFORDABILITY

The issue of college affordability is very near and dear to Rep. Mike Tryon’s heart. A father of three, Rep. Tryon has two children who recently graduated from college and a third child who is currently a college student. He has watched tuition for Illinois’ state colleges/universities skyrocket and currently serves as a Chief Co-Sponsor of a package of bills aimed at making college more affordable for Illinois families. These bills include:

  • HB3640: Would create a $1,000 tax credit to help middle class families pay for college expenses at an Illinois accredited college or university. The credit would accrue for each semester that the eligible student is supported by the eligible taxpayer. To be eligible for the credit, the family or student would have to attend a MAP-approved Illinois institution on at least a half-time basis with tuition and fees greater than $1,000. Students would also have to be residents of Illinois and the family would have to have an adjusted gross income of less than $150,000. It would be available to students at any level of their higher education studies.
  • HB3641: Would unlock the limited tax deduction rights currently granted to Illinoisans who save for their children’s college educations through a state-administered college plan. Under HB3641, the up-front tax deduction would also become available to contributors to 529 college savings plans.

In the 98th and 97th General Assemblies, Rep. Tryon has also sponsored bills that would require any Illinois public university or college which wants to raise tuition more than 15% higher than the national average increase to obtain General Assembly permission before doing so. The bills were stuck in the Rules Committee and never assigned a hearing. Rep. Tryon has said he will continue to file that bill so that a level of accountability can be restored to the state’s higher education system.