Temporary Lottery Scholarship Fix Goes To The House

Mar 5, 2013

The Senate has unanimously approved a proposal to temporarily shore up a lottery-financed college scholarship program that is running short of money.

If the measure becomes law, New Mexico students may avoid a reduction in their scholarships next year. However, lawmakers said Tuesday a longer term solution is needed to prevent cuts the following year.

The bill provides an additional source of money for the scholarship program — about $10 million annually from what the state receives from a national settlement with tobacco companies.

The measure goes to the House.

If nothing is done by lawmakers before they adjourn, the state will need to lower scholarship awards next year to less than the cost of tuition.

The program faces problems because scholarship costs are growing faster than lottery revenue.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.