Panel Gives Nod To $1.1Million Arkansas Scholarship Stopgap

Jul 12, 2013

A plan to spend $1.1 million from a state reserve fund to pay for scholarships in health fields has won the approval of a legislative panel.

A subcommittee of the Legislative Council endorsed a proposal by Gov. Mike Beebe to use the money to pay tuition for 47 students seeking health-related degrees that aren't offered in Arkansas.

The fields include dentistry, optometry and veterinary medicine.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports the grants were cut due to a lack of funding.

Legislators said they want to develop a long-term funding plan during the 2014 fiscal legislative session.

Dwindling reserves for the state's scholarship programs have led to a reduction of 4,800 scholarship spots for new Arkansas students.

The health scholarship plan still needs approval from the full Legislative Council.