AN ACT TO MAKE NECESSARY IMPROVEMENTS TO ENSURE STATE FUNDS FOR POSTSECONDARY EDUCATIONAL FINANCIAL AID PROGRAMS ARE FULLY EXPENDED AND TO GAUGE THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THOSE PROGRAMS, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE JOINT LEGISLATIVE PROGRAM EVALUATION OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE.
Amends GS 116-209.45, regarding the State Education Assistance Authority (Authority)'s required annual reporting on the Forgivable Education Loans for Service Program (Program). Specifies content of the reports, now requiring the reports to include the total number of loan recipients by year who have either met employment service requirements for loan forgiveness, or elect cash loan repayment, as described. Mandates that individual records used to generate the report be retained for five years.
Directs the Authority to include initial information on loan recipients of the Program, including the recipient's field of work, in its annual report by December 1, 2022.
Directs the Authority to develop and maintain a record-keeping system to track the repayment methods used by recipients of State-funded educational loans eligible for forgiveness based on meeting employment service requirements, including the Teaching Fellows Program and the Forgivable Education Loans for Service Program. Specifies that the system is to facilitate meeting program reporting requirements and determining whether the programs are meeting employment needs. Requires the Authority to report on its progress to the specified NCGA committee by January 1, 2022.
Amends GS 116-209.14 to require the Authority to biennially develop and maintain a strategic plan that sets performance goals and performance measures concerning the administration of State-funded financial assistance for postsecondary programs. Requires the Authority to make the most recent strategic plan available on its website each year. Modifies the current annual reporting requirement of the Authority to now require the Authority to annually publish a report on the implementation of its strategic plan and its activities to the Governor and the NCGA. Details required content of the annual report, including (1) the strategic plan adopted, (2) a complete operating and financial statement of the Authority during the year, and (3) data metrics on the administration of State-funded financial assistance programs and recipients of financial assistance, with the specified institutional and demographic data. Effective July 1, 2021. Directs the Authority to report to the specified NCGA committee on its progress in meeting these new and modified requirements by January 1, 2022.
Appropriates $700,000 in recurring funds from the General Fund to the UNC Board of Governors for 2021-22 to be allocated to the Authority each fiscal year to cover administrative costs associated with the UNC Need-Based Financial Aid Program.
Directs the Office of State Management and Budget (OSBM) to develop recommendations on increasing transparency in administrative cost reporting for the Need-Based Scholarships for Students Attending Private Institutions of Higher Education Program, including a method for reporting program funding in its financial statements. Directs OSBM to report to the specified NCGA committees by June 30, 2021.