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Relating to the exemption of tuition and laboratory fees at public institutions of higher education for certain paramedics.
No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
Currently, firefighters are exempt from paying tuition fees if they are enrolled in courses offered as part of a fire science curriculum at public higher education institutions. Some paramedics have benefited from this exemption because they are also firefighters, but an estimated 3,000 non-firefighter paramedics are excluded from this benefit.
SB 2231 would require public higher education institutions to exempt from tuition and laboratory fees any student enrolled in one or more courses offered as part of a fire science curriculum who is employed as a paramedic by a political subdivision of the state.
Texas Action recommends opposing SB 2231 because it infringes on limited government principles by expanding a tuition exemption to paramedics. We generally oppose the creation or expansion of exemptions that favor one group or class to the detriment of others. While college costs continue to rise unabated, creating additional exemptions only shoulders other students with staggering tuition fees.