WIUM Tristates Public Radio

College Tuition Break Proposed in Illinois

Jun 16, 2013

Illinois State Representative Adam Brown (R-Decatur) graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign in 2007, and he said in the short time since then, tuition has steadily gone up.

"The average cost for tuition, fees and books right now -- $26,000. Ten years ago that was $19,000,” Brown said. 

Brown proposes giving families a tax credit worth $1,000 to help offset expenses for going to an accredited Illinois college or university.  It would last only four years and be available to families with incomes under $150,000.

Of course, giving families a tax break means Illinois would be giving up that revenue.  And Republicans, including Brown, have been calling for the state to rein in spending while also calling for a rollback of the 2011 income tax hike. 

Adam Brown
Credit Illinois General Assembly website

Still, Brown defends his plan:

“Very few issues are more important than a well-educated working class and that’s exactly what these tax relief/incentive packages provide,”  Brown said. 

Brown also wants to lift restrictions on the types of pre-paid college tuition funds on which Illinois residents can claim deductions.