Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SB0815
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Full Text of SB0815  102nd General Assembly


Rep. Carol Ammons

Filed: 5/29/2021





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend Senate Bill 815, AS AMENDED,
3by replacing everything after the enacting clause with the
5    "Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
6Commission on Equitable Public University Funding Act.
7    Section 5. Findings. The General Assembly finds all of the
9        (1) Historical and continued systemic racism has
10    created significant disparities in college access,
11    affordability, and completion for Black, Latinx, and other
12    underrepresented and historically underserved students in
13    this State.
14        (2) Improvements in postsecondary access, completion,
15    and success rates are required in order to meet State
16    goals for equity in attainment and will require further



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1    investments in the higher education system to support
2    historically underrepresented and underserved groups,
3    including Black, Latinx, and low-income students in
4    particular.
5        (3) This State's approach to funding education has
6    contributed to racial and socioeconomic inequities in
7    access to resources and educational outcomes.
8        (4) Great strides have been made in this State in
9    addressing inequity in funding the kindergarten through
10    grade 12 public school system, including the adoption of
11    an evidence-based funding formula, which has resulted in
12    new funds being targeted to the highest-need districts.
13        (5) Adequate, equitable, and stable investment in
14    higher education is the key to ensuring that every
15    institution of higher education can provide adequate
16    academic, financial, and social-emotional support and
17    services that improve persistence and completion.
18        (6) In this State, higher education appropriations
19    have effectively been cut in half since fiscal year 2002.
20    Institutions of higher education serving higher
21    percentages of Black students are more reliant on State
22    funds and have been disproportionately harmed by this
23    disinvestment in higher education.
24        (7) As a result of historic underfunding and level
25    cuts to institutions of higher education, this State's
26    public universities have needed to increase tuition to



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1    make up the funding shortfalls.
2        (8) Combined with the high cost of college and
3    insufficient State financial aid, racial income and wealth
4    disparities caused by structural racism contribute to the
5    accumulation of student debt and make college enrollment
6    and persistence more challenging for Black and Latinx
7    students.
8        (9) Despite similar numbers of Black high school
9    graduates, about 25,000 fewer Black students enrolled in
10    institutions of higher education in this State in 2018
11    compared to 2008.
12        (10) State appropriations make it possible for
13    colleges to provide essential academic services,
14    social-emotional support and services, and institutional
15    aid to students to improve student persistence and
16    completion.
17        (11) This State must strategically invest in higher
18    education to address wide disparities in degree
19    completion. Public community colleges currently graduate
20    Black and Latinx students at a rate of 14% and 26% within 3
21    years, respectively, compared to 38% of white students. At
22    public universities, Black and Latinx students currently
23    graduate at a rate of 34% and 49%, respectively, compared
24    to 66% of white students, within 6 years.
25        (12) This State has a moral obligation and economic
26    interest in dismantling and reforming structures that



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1    create or exacerbate racial and socioeconomic inequities
2    in higher education.
3        (13) This State benefits from a public higher
4    education system that receives adequate and stable
5    resources for student success and that strategically uses
6    those resources to maximize the potential of each public
7    institution of higher education and to maximize the
8    benefits to this State, including, but not limited to,
9    improved college access and attainment and higher median
10    wages for all residents, reduced income inequalities,
11    improved economic output and innovation, increased access
12    and engagement in world-class research opportunities, and
13    improved college enrollment, persistence, and completion
14    of underrepresented and historically underserved students,
15    including Black and Latinx students and students from
16    low-income families.
17    Section 10. Commission on Equitable Public University
18Funding; purpose.
19    (a) There is created the Commission on Equitable Public
20University Funding.
21    (b) The purpose of the Commission is to, at a minimum,
22recommend specific data-driven criteria and approaches to the
23General Assembly to adequately, equitably, and stably fund
24public universities in this State and to evaluate the existing
25funding methods used for public universities.



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1    Section 15. Membership; administrative support;
3    (a) The membership of the Commission shall include, at a
5        (1) One member of the Senate appointed by the
6    President of the Senate, who shall serve as
7    co-chairperson.
8        (2) One member of the House of Representatives
9    appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives,
10    who shall serve as co-chairperson.
11        (3) The chairperson of the Board of Higher Education
12    or a designee, who shall serve as co-chairperson.
13        (4) One member appointed by the Governor, who shall
14    serve as co-chairperson.
15        (5) One member of the Senate appointed by the Minority
16    Leader of the Senate.
17        (6) One member of the House of Representatives
18    appointed by the Minority Leader of the House of
19    Representatives.
20        (7) The chairperson of the Illinois Student Assistance
21    Commission or a designee.
22        (8) The chairperson of the Higher Education Committee
23    of the House of Representatives or a designee.
24        (9) The chairperson of the Higher Education Committee
25    of the Senate or a designee.



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1        (10) Twelve members representing the public
2    universities in this State each appointed by the President
3    of each public university.
4        (11) One member representing a higher education
5    advocacy organization focused on eliminating disparities
6    in college completion in this State for low-income and
7    first-generation college students and students of color
8    appointed by the Board of Higher Education.
9        (12) One member representing a statewide advocacy
10    organization focused on improving educational and
11    employment opportunities for women and adults appointed by
12    the Board of Higher Education.
13        (13) One member representing a statewide advocacy
14    organization focused on developing an equitable
15    birth-to-career educational system appointed by the Board
16    of Higher Education.
17        (14) One member representing a statewide organization
18    that advocates for alternative education and bridge
19    programs and the re-enrollment of students in this State
20    appointed by the Board of Higher Education.
21        (15) One member representing a fiscal policy research
22    organization focused on the impact that State-level budget
23    and tax policies have on equitable education funding
24    solutions appointed by the Board of Higher Education.
25        (16) Two members representing an organization that
26    advocates on behalf of public university faculty members



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1    who are each employed by a different university appointed
2    by the Board of Higher Education.
3        (17) One health care expert from the public higher
4    education arena appointed by the Board of Higher
5    Education, in consultation with the presidents and
6    chancellors of the public universities.
7        (18) One member who has legal expertise in higher
8    education funding and finance appointed by the Board of
9    Higher Education.
10        (19) One postsecondary student enrolled at a public
11    university in this State appointed by the Board of Higher
12    Education.
13    (b) The Board of Higher Education shall recognize and
14consider the representation of underrepresented and
15historically underserved groups, including those who are
16Black, Latinx, or from low-income families, and the racial and
17geographical diversity of this State when making appointments
18to the Commission.
19    (c) The co-chairpersons may identify and invite experts to
20speak to the Commission on issues, including, but not limited
21to, higher education funding, finance, health care, and
22research and development.
23    (d) The Board of Higher Education shall provide
24administrative support to the Commission, including any
25related workgroups, and shall be responsible for administering
26the Commission's operations and ensuring that the requirements



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1of this Act are met.
2    (e) The members of the Commission shall serve without
3compensation for their services as members of the Commission.
4    Section 20. Meetings; reports.
5    (a) The Commission shall meet at least once per quarter
6beginning no later than October 15, 2021.
7    (b) On or before July 1, 2023, the Commission shall
8deliver to the General Assembly and publish on the Board of
9Higher Education's Internet website or otherwise make publicly
10available a report on the Commission's recommendations,
11including specific criteria and funding approaches in
12accordance with all applicable laws, to establish an
13equity-based funding model for the allocation of State funds
14to public universities. The recommendations included in the
15report must be equity-centered and consider all of the
16following areas:
17        (1) Remediating inequities in funding that have led to
18    disparities in access, affordability, and completion for
19    underrepresented and historically underserved student
20    groups, including students who are Black, Latinx, or from
21    low-income families.
22        (2) Ensuring that this State adequately, equitably,
23    and stably funds public institutions of higher education
24    in a manner that recognizes historical and current
25    inequities impacting underrepresented minorities' higher



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1    education access and completion.
2        (3) Providing incentives to all 4-year institutions of
3    higher education in this State to enroll underrepresented
4    and historically underserved student groups, including
5    students who are Black, Latinx, or from low-income
6    families, in proportion to the diversity of this State's
7    population.
8        (4) Allowing ongoing monitoring and continuous
9    improvement of the public university funding models by
10    requiring transparency and accountability in how State
11    appropriations are expended and identifying a mechanism to
12    study and review the implementation of any funding model
13    developed and the long-term implications of this Act.
14        (5) Creating guidelines for how funding is distributed
15    during times of significant economic hardship, as defined
16    by the Commission, so that public institutions of higher
17    education are able to adequately, equitably, and stably
18    serve students.
19        (6) Ensuring that this State adequately and stably
20    funds public institutions of higher education that serve
21    underrepresented and historically underserved student
22    groups, including students who are Black, Latinx, or from
23    low-income families, and graduate and professional
24    students, including doctors, dentists, pharmacists, and
25    veterinarians.
26        (7) Supporting the diverse individual mission of each



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1    public university, including its commitment to research
2    and health care enterprises that serve and enhance the
3    well-being of the residents of this State.
4        (8) Fostering the economic activity and innovation
5    generated by a university's activities, while recognizing
6    the impact historic funding inequities may have had on the
7    university's activities.
8        (9) Taking into consideration the percentage of
9    institutional aid provided from an institution's annual
10    budget.
11        (10) Taking into consideration the number of
12    undergraduate students engaged in research at each
13    university.
14        (11) Supporting institutional efforts to recruit and
15    retain world-class faculty and university leaders.
16        (12) Ensuring stable and adequate funding for all
17    institutions and that all universities are held harmless
18    to their current funding level. The Commission may
19    consider and report approaches to and the impact of a hold
20    harmless funding provision for institutions of higher
21    education as part of its final recommendations.
22        (13) Taking into consideration the long-term
23    implications and outcomes of the funding systems.
24    The recommendations must fulfill the principles
25established by the Board of Higher Education's Strategic Plan.
26The recommendations may also be informed by the data-driven



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1findings and recommendations established by the Chicago State
2University Equity Working Group and other groups researching
3equity in higher education and higher education funding and be
4aligned to this State's postsecondary attainment goal and
5related equity targets.
6    Section 25. Compliance. Notwithstanding any other law or
7provision to the contrary, all public institutions of higher
8education and State agencies regulating public institutions of
9higher education shall furnish such data and information to
10the Commission as the Commission deems necessary to fulfill
11the requirements of this Act.
12    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
13becoming law.".