Florida Senate - 2020                                     SB 132
       By Senator Braynon
       35-00148-20                                            2020132__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the Sunshine Scholarship Program;
    3         creating s. 1009.895, F.S.; establishing the Sunshine
    4         Scholarship Program; requiring the Department of
    5         Education to administer the program; providing the
    6         purpose of the program; defining terms; requiring
    7         certain financial aid to be credited to a student’s
    8         tuition and fees before the award of a Sunshine
    9         Scholarship; providing student eligibility
   10         requirements; requiring a student to repay the
   11         scholarship amount under certain circumstances;
   12         providing that the program only applies to a student’s
   13         tuition and fees; providing for funding; providing for
   14         rulemaking; providing an effective date.
   16  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   18         Section 1. Section 1009.895, Florida Statutes, is created
   19  to read:
   20         1009.895Sunshine Scholarship Program.—
   21         (1)There is established the Sunshine Scholarship Program
   22  to be administered by the Department of Education. The Sunshine
   23  Scholarship Program shall provide funding for 100 percent of
   24  tuition and fees for Florida residents pursuing an associate
   25  degree or career certificate from an eligible postsecondary
   26  institution. For purposes of this section, “eligible
   27  postsecondary institution” means a Florida College System
   28  institution, a career center operated by a school district, or a
   29  charter technical career center. Financial aid received from the
   30  Pell Grant, the Florida Public Student Assistance Grant Program,
   31  and the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program shall be
   32  credited first to the student’s tuition and fees before the
   33  award of a scholarship under this section.
   34         (2)To be eligible to receive a scholarship pursuant to
   35  this section, a student must:
   36         (a)Be a resident for tuition purposes, as defined in s.
   37  1009.21.
   38         (b)Meet the general requirements for student eligibility
   39  as provided in s. 1009.40, except as otherwise provided in this
   40  section.
   41         (c)Have a total annual household income equal to or less
   42  than $50,000.
   43         (d)Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid
   44  (FAFSA) for each academic year in which the scholarship is
   45  sought.
   46         (e)Be accepted by and enroll in an eligible postsecondary
   47  institution.
   48         (f)Maintain continuous enrollment as a full-time student
   49  while receiving the scholarship. For purposes of this section,
   50  “full-time student” means a student enrolled in a minimum of 12
   51  semester hours or the clock hour equivalent.
   52         (3)Upon completion of his or her program of study, or upon
   53  disenrollment from an eligible postsecondary institution, the
   54  student must reside and work within this state for the same
   55  period of time he or she received funds from the program. If the
   56  student does not reside and work within this state for the
   57  specified period, the student must repay the total amount
   58  awarded, plus an annual interest rate equal to the federal
   59  student loan interest rate in effect when the student entered
   60  the program. The requirements of this subsection do not apply:
   61         (a)When a student enlists in the United States Armed
   62  Forces; or
   63         (b)While a student is continuously enrolled in a
   64  baccalaureate degree program or higher at a Florida
   65  postsecondary institution. Once the student graduates or
   66  disenrolls from a Florida postsecondary institution, the
   67  requirements of this subsection apply.
   68         (4)To remain eligible for the program, a student must
   69  maintain the equivalent of a cumulative grade point average of
   70  2.5 on a 4.0 scale while enrolled at an eligible postsecondary
   71  institution.
   72         (5)The Sunshine Scholarship Program applies only to
   73  tuition and fees. Each student is responsible for additional
   74  user fees, textbooks, and other college-related expenses.
   75         (6)Funding for the program shall be as provided in the
   76  General Appropriations Act.
   77         (7)The State Board of Education shall adopt rules to
   78  administer this section.
   79         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.