SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – State Rep. Suzanne Ness, D-Crystal Lake, recently supported a measure to allow community colleges and housing development authorities to work together to develop affordable housing for students, making it easier for students with limited financial means to pursue a higher education.
“Whether it’s a four-year university or a community college, every student should be able to access an education,” said Ness. “Unfortunately, many individuals may decide not to pursue a college education due to financial constraints and lack of affordable housing. We must do more to remove these barriers and ensure that every individual has a fair chance in pursuing higher education.”
Ness voted to pass House Bill 374, which permits community colleges and local housing development authorities to develop affordable housing for students. Current law does not allow for community colleges to own student housing and this bill would enable local governments to partner with housing authorities and non-profit organizations to develop affordable housing for students, aiming to aid students with limited financial means for them to complete their college education. This piece of legislation recently passed out of the House of Representatives and is awaiting consideration in the Senate.
“Having access to affordable housing is integral for students that are already facing financial burdens with education costs, student loans, and other expenses.” said Ness. “This piece of legislation will allow local community colleges to partner with like-minded community organizations and allow for more individuals to pursue a degree and increase their earning power, thus raising them and their families to a more sustainable future.”