House approves two bills authored by Jim Banks

Two bills by State Sen. Jim Banks (R-Columbia City) to make higher education more affordable for Hoosiers passed the House of Representatives on Monday, March 25.

During the session, Banks introduced several bills intended to make Indiana's higher education system more efficient and accountable. His legislation approved on March 25 included:

• Senate Bill 182 - Requires the Indiana Commission for Higher Education and state colleges to develop policies that expand college credit transferability. This includes allowing students who earn a two-year associate degree to transfer their credits to a related four-year bachelor's degree program and enter at the same status as a junior.

• Senate Bill 406 - Establishes a streamlined program for administering college-level classes to high school students for dual credit.

"The path to a college degree has been obstructed by financial constraints and administrative red tape for too long," Banks said. "We often see bright students kept from pursuing higher education due to limitations created by an out-of-control system. That isn't right. The legislation approved today will allow students to earn their degrees in a quicker and more cost-efficient manner."

Both bills now return to the Senate for final legislative review.