Thursday, February 01, 2007

Garrett to NJ College Students: DROP DEAD

An extra $260 may help with college costs

Tens of thousands of North Jersey college students would get more financial aid this fall from a sweeping $463.5 billion spending bill approved Wednesday by the House.

The bill, which faces quick action in the Senate, provides the first increase in four years to the maximum Pell Grant, a program for needy college students.


"It really makes a big difference," said Steven M. Rose, president of Passaic County Community College. "Many of our students are making maybe $10,000 a year. A lot are working for minimum wage. If you have to pay $500 for books, you have to work a lot of hours to earn that."

Nearly half the students at the Passaic college get Pell Grants, while 1 in 5 attending Bergen Community College gets them. Among the state colleges, New Jersey City University has the highest proportion of students receiving Pell Grants, almost 1 in 3.

Wow. Talk about a no-brainer, huh?

Voting against it were Reps. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-Harding, and Scott Garrett, R-Wantage.

I guess it doesn't matter. No one in the 5th district is paying attention, right?

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