News Local/State

Rep. Brown Proposes Tax Break to Make College More Affordable


With college tuition on the rise, Illinois House Republicans say they want to give working class families a break, and an incentive to go to a school in state.

State Rep. Adam Brown (R-Champaign) graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2007, but in that short time, tuition has steadily gone up.

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

Brown proposes giving families a tax credit worth $1000 to help offset expenses for going to an accredited Illinois college or university. It would only last 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, like Brown, have been calling for the state to rein in spending and for a rollback of the 2011 income tax hike. 

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,” he said.

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