Bill to Expand Educational Opportunities for Maine National Guard Members Becomes Law

Contact:
Krysta West
Communications Director
Senate Republican Office
(207) 287-1505
krysta.west@legislature.maine.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

AUGUSTA – Senate President Michael Thibodeau (R-Waldo) is pleased to announce that his bill to expand educational opportunities for members of the Maine National Guard has been signed into law. The bill, LD 1736, received unanimous support in both the Maine House of Representatives and the Maine Senate. It will take effect 90 days after the adjournment of the Special Session.

This new law broadens the Maine National Guard Education Assistance Program to include private non-profit, post-secondary education institutions that opt-in to the program, as well as the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, in the list of institutions where members of the Maine National Guard may receive a tuition benefit. The benefit will be capped at University of Maine tuition rates with participating institutions covering the difference in cost.

Previously, Maine National Guard members were only eligible to receive this tuition benefit at colleges that are part of the University of Maine System, the Maine Community College System and Maine Maritime Academy. Under the new law, all Maine institutions will be able to offer this benefit.

“I am very pleased that Maine National Guard members will now have more options to continue their education in Maine,” said Senate President Michael Thibodeau. “This program has been a very successful recruitment tool, and now members will have even more opportunities. Often times, members of our armed forces put their lives on hold for several years to serve their state and country. This is just another way we can give back to those who give so much to protect our way of life and ensure our freedom.”

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