September 26, 2020
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HB 1409

A bill to be entitled
2An act relating to the Talent and Economic Advancement
3Matching Grant Program; creating s. 1009.705, F.S.;
4establishing the Talent and Economic Advancement Matching
5Grant Program for certain purposes; providing for
6administration of the program by the Department of
7Education; providing definitions; authorizing businesses
8to partner with certain institutions to provide grants to
9students who enroll in certain educational programs;
10authorizing the department to match certain private
11contributions; requiring participating institutions to
12certify to the department contributions received by
13businesses for grant purposes; providing eligibility and
14certification requirements; requiring the department to
15allocate contributions to eligible institutions; providing
16allocation requirements; providing requirements for
17unallocated funds; providing duties of the Chief Financial
18Officer; providing match criteria; providing eligibility
19criteria for grant recipients; providing criteria for
20award amounts; providing limitations; providing
21certification requirements for participating institutions;
22requiring the return of undisbursed amounts to the Office
23of Student Financial Assistance; providing reporting
24requirements for participating institutions; specifying
25institution participation ineligibility criteria;
26requiring the State Board of Education to adopt rules;
27providing an effective date.
29Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
31     Section 1.  Section 1009.705, Florida Statutes, is created
32to read:
33     1009.705  Talent and Economic Advancement Matching Grant
35     (1)(a)  The Talent and Economic Advancement Matching Grant
36Program is established to provide businesses in this state with
37incentives to partner with eligible postsecondary educational
38institutions to expand access to higher education for residents
39of the state by providing grants to students who enroll in the
40certificate or degree programs described in subsection (2). The
41matching grant program shall be administered by the Department
42of Education.
43     (b)  For purposes of this section, the term "department"
44means the Department of Education and the term "office" means
45the Office of Student Financial Assistance.
46     (2)  An institution that is licensed by the Commission for
47Independent Education and accredited by a national or regional
48accrediting agency or association recognized by the United
49States Department of Education may partner with a business in
50this state to provide grants to students who enroll in
51postsecondary certificate or undergraduate degree programs
52identified annually by the State Board of Education that prepare
53students for careers in science, technology, engineering,
54mathematics, allied health, or other high-skill, high-wage
55occupations as identified on the final targeted occupations
56lists published by Workforce Florida, Inc., and the Agency for
57Workforce Innovation.
58     (3)(a)  To the extent matching funds are provided in the
59General Appropriations Act for credit to the State Student
60Financial Assistance Trust Fund as provided in s. 1010.73,
61contributions by a business to an eligible postsecondary
62institution to support the grants described in subsection (2)
63may be eligible to be matched by the department on a dollar-for-
64dollar basis.
65     (b)  Participating institutions shall certify to the
66department any contributions received from businesses to support
67the grants described in subsection (2). Pledged contributions
68are not eligible for matching prior to the actual collection of
69total funds. The institution shall certify the name of each
70business that donates funds to the matching grant program, the
71amount collected from the business, and the certificate or
72degree program or programs for which the donated funds are
74     (4)(a)  The department shall allocate to each eligible
75institution an amount equal to the amount of private
76contributions certified by that institution, not to exceed 25
77percent of the total funds appropriated for the matching grant
78program. Such funds shall be released to qualifying educational
79institutions on a first-come, first-served basis upon receipt by
80the department of the appropriated funds and the information
81required by paragraph (3)(b). Funds that remain unallocated on
82December 1 of each year shall be available for allocation to
83eligible institutions with remaining certified private
84contributions that have not been matched.
85     (b)  Notwithstanding s. 216.301 and pursuant to s. 216.351,
86any balance in the trust fund at the end of any fiscal year that
87has been allocated to the matching grant program shall remain in
88the trust fund and shall be available for carrying out the
89purposes of the matching grant program.
90     (c)  The Chief Financial Officer shall authorize
91expenditures from the trust fund upon receipt of vouchers
92approved by the department.
93     (5)  In order to be eligible to receive a grant pursuant to
94this section, an applicant must:
95     (a)  Meet the general eligibility requirements set forth in
96s. 1009.40.
97     (b)  Enroll for a minimum of six credit hours per term, or
98the equivalent, in an eligible institution in an undergraduate
99degree or postsecondary certificate program that prepares
100students for careers in science, technology, engineering,
101mathematics, allied health, or other high-skill, high-wage
102occupations as identified annually by the State Board of
103Education pursuant to subsection (2).
104     (6)  The award amount for a grant provided under this
105section shall not exceed $4,000 per year. If a participating
106student is a veteran or the spouse or child of military
107personnel on active duty, institutions participating in the
108matching grant program must agree to provide additional support
109to the student in the form of reduced tuition or fees or with
110scholarships in addition to the amount the student is provided
111by the grant. The award amount for the grant may not exceed the
112institution's estimated annual cost of attendance for the
114     (7)  Each participating institution shall certify to the
115office by the date established by the office the eligible
116students to whom grant moneys are disbursed each academic term,
117the eligible certificate or degree program in which each student
118is enrolled, and the amount of funds disbursed to the student.
119The institution shall remit to the office any undisbursed
120amounts by June 1 of each year.
121     (8)  Each participating institution shall report annually
122to the office by the date specified by the department and in the
123manner prescribed by the department the businesses participating
124in the matching grant program, the eligible certificate or
125degree programs for which each business provided contributions,
126the amount contributed, and any reductions in tuition and fees
127granted to participating students by the institution. The office
128shall provide a summary of the institutional reports to the
129Executive Office of the Governor, the President of the Senate,
130and the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
131     (9)  If an institution fails to comply with the
132requirements of subsection (7), the institution is no longer
133eligible to participate in the matching grant program.
134     (10)  The State Board of Education shall adopt any rules
135necessary to implement the provisions of this section.
136     Section 2.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.

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