On Monday, May 4, 2015, the Colorado Senate Committee on State, Veterans, and Military Affairs voted to postpone HB 15-1027 indefinitely, effectively killing the bill.  As we have previously mentioned, this bill would have required state-supported institutions of higher education to classify Native American students with historical ties to Colorado as in-state students for tuition purposes.

HB 15-1027 was introduced in the Colorado House on January 7 and assigned to the House Education Committee.  The bill was later referred to House Appropriations and passed with amendments on its second reading.

The bill’s first amendment outlines that students classified as in-state students are eligible for state-funded financial aid but ineligible for a college opportunity fund stipend.  Another amendment inserted a new section that adjusts anticipated funding received by the department of higher education from the students’ share of tuition.  The final amendment slightly changed the name of the bill so that it read “A Bill for an Act Concerning In-State Tuition for American Indians from Tribes with Historical Ties to Colorado, and, in Connection Therewith, Reducing an Appropriation.”

HB 15-1027 passed the Colorado House as amended, and was introduced in the Senate on April 27.  You can see TEDNA and NARF’s testimony on this bill here.

Ansley Sherman is a legal fellow at the Native American Rights Fund.  She assists staff attorney Matthew Campbell with education matters, including HB 15-1027. 

Last year a Bill was introduced to provide in-state tuition to Native Americans from tribes with historical ties to Colorado.  We posted on it here, here, and here.  We also offered testimony in support of the bill, which can be seen here.  Unfortunately, the bill did not pass.

However, the bill has again been introduced and is scheduled to be heard in the Colorado House Education Committee on January 26, 2015.  The bill can be seen here.