Texas Senate Gives Final OK to CSSB 4 “Tax Credit Scholarship” Voucher Bill
04.21.2015 — Today, without further debate, the full Senate gave final approval to CSSB 4, which would allow a business to receive a tax credit in exchange for a donation to an educational assistance organization that would distribute funding for “scholarships” for special-needs and low-income students who apply for the program.
Students in public schools with enrollments of more than 100 in counties of more than 50,000 people and from families earning up to 250 percent of the federal poverty level, or $60,000 for a family of four, would be eligible. The program would initially be limited to $100 million business donations (providing funding for an estimated 15,000-16,000 students), but that amount would increase each year. The amount of each scholarship would initially be capped at 75 percent of the average state funding per student.
The bill now goes to the House for consideration. TASA urges school leaders to contact their state representatives and urge them to vote against this legislation, which would take tax dollars slated for public schools and allow them to be used by private schools that do not have to meet the same accountability standards as do public schools.