Bill Text: TX SB146 | 2021-2022 | 87th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Relating to student loan repayment assistance for certain nurses employed by a long-term care facility.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2021-03-03 - Referred to Finance [SB146 Detail]

Download: Texas-2021-SB146-Introduced.html
 
 
  By: Powell S.B. No. 146
 
 
 
   
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to student loan repayment assistance for certain nurses
  employed by a long-term care facility.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Chapter 61, Education Code, is amended by adding
  Subchapter N to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER N. REPAYMENT OF EDUCATION LOANS FOR CERTAIN NURSES
         Sec. 61.731.  LOAN REPAYMENT ASSISTANCE AUTHORIZED. The
  board shall provide, in accordance with this subchapter and board
  rules, assistance in the repayment of eligible student loans for
  eligible nurses who apply and qualify for the assistance.
         Sec. 61.732.  ELIGIBILITY. To be eligible to receive loan
  repayment assistance under this subchapter, a nurse must:
               (1)  apply to the board in a manner prescribed by the
  board;
               (2)  be an advanced practice registered nurse,
  registered nurse, or licensed vocational nurse; and
               (3)  at the time of application for repayment
  assistance have been employed full-time for at least one year by,
  and currently be employed full-time by:
                     (A)  a convalescent or nursing facility, as
  defined by Chapter 242, Health and Safety Code; or
                     (B)  a continuing care facility, as defined by
  Chapter 246, Health and Safety Code.
         Sec. 61.733.  LIMITATIONS. A nurse may receive loan
  repayment assistance under this subchapter for not more than five
  years.
         Sec. 61.734.  ELIGIBLE LOANS. (a) The board may provide
  loan repayment assistance under this subchapter for the repayment
  of any student loan for education at an institution of higher
  education, a private or independent institution of higher
  education, or a public or private out-of-state institution of
  higher education accredited by a recognized accrediting agency,
  including loans for undergraduate education, received by an
  eligible person through any lender.
         (b)  The board may not provide repayment assistance for a
  student loan that is in default at the time of the person's
  application.
         (c)  In each state fiscal biennium, the board shall attempt
  to allocate all funds appropriated to the board for the purpose of
  providing loan repayment assistance under this subchapter.
         Sec. 61.735.  REPAYMENT. (a) The board shall deliver any
  repayment under this subchapter in a lump sum payable:
               (1)  to both the lender or other holder of the loan and
  the nurse; or
               (2)  directly to the lender or other holder of the loan
  on the nurse's behalf.
         (b)  A repayment under this subchapter may be applied to any
  amount due in connection with the loan.
         Sec. 61.736.  AMOUNT OF REPAYMENT ASSISTANCE. (a) A nurse
  may receive loan repayment assistance under this subchapter in an
  amount determined by the board, not to exceed $5,000 for each year
  the nurse establishes eligibility for the assistance.
         (b)  The total amount of loan repayment assistance provided
  under this subchapter may not exceed the sum of:
               (1)  the total amount of gifts and grants accepted by
  the board for the repayment assistance;
               (2)  legislative appropriations for the repayment
  assistance; and
               (3)  other funds available to the board for the
  repayment assistance.
         (c)  The board may adjust in an equitable manner the
  distribution amounts that nurses would otherwise receive under
  Subsection (a) for a year as necessary to comply with Subsection
  (b).
         (d)  The total amount of loan repayment assistance awarded
  under this section may not exceed $6 million in a state fiscal
  biennium.
         Sec. 61.737.  RULES; ADMINISTRATION. (a) The board shall
  adopt rules necessary to administer this subchapter.
         (b)  The board shall distribute to each institution of higher
  education or private or independent institution of higher education
  and to any appropriate state agency and professional association
  copies of the rules adopted under this section and other pertinent
  information relating to this subchapter.
         (c)  The board shall administer the program under this
  subchapter in a manner that maximizes any matching funds available
  through other sources.
         (d)  A reasonable amount, not to exceed three percent, of any
  money appropriated for purposes of this subchapter may be used to
  pay the costs of administering this subchapter.
         Sec. 61.738.  SOLICITATION AND ACCEPTANCE OF FUNDS. The
  board may solicit and accept gifts and grants from any public or
  private source for the purposes of this subchapter.
         SECTION 2.  The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board is
  required to provide assistance in the repayment of eligible student
  loans for eligible nurses as provided by this Act only if the
  legislature appropriates money specifically for that purpose. If
  the legislature does not appropriate money specifically for that
  purpose, the board may, but is not required to, provide assistance
  in the repayment of eligible student loans for eligible nurses as
  provided by this Act using other appropriations available for that
  purpose.
         SECTION 3.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2021.
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