Statistics show that 8 of Illinois' 12 public universities have seen a decline in enrollment. State Representative Dwight Kay of Glen Carbon believes that is a reflection of the high price of higher education in Illinois and that most students decide to pursue a degree at a college outside of the state because it is cheaper.

In an effort to change that, Kay has co-sponsored a pair of bills that, if passed, could help ease the burden placed on individuals and families paying for college.

House Bill 3640 would create at $1,000 tax credit to help pay for expenses at an Illinois accredited school while House Bill 3641 "unlocks" the limited tax deduction rights currently granted to Illinoisans who are saving for their children's education.

Kay says he thinks these bills will gain momentum in the coming months

Kay Comments

In order to qualify for the tax credit, Kay says that the family or student must meet the following criteria: attend a MAP-approved Illinois institution on at least a half-time basis with tuition and fees greater than $1,000, be an Illinois resident and a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen, and the family must have an adjusted gross income of less than $150,000.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio /