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Fix to GI Bill will help veterans at private colleges in California

August 4, 2009 |  6:26 pm

Military veterans who want to attend private colleges and universities in California have won an important victory that will provide them with financial aid from the federal government, officials announced Tuesday.

Because of a much-protested technicality in its wording, a new GI Bill previously would have awarded no tuition aid to those veterans. The law had pegged funding at private schools to the maximum in-state tuition at the most expensive public university in any state. But California public campuses traditionally avoid the word "tuition" and instead say they charge "fees" for in-staters.

Under an agreement between the state and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the bulk of fees in California now will be counted as tuition. As a result, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said in a statement that "California’s veterans can now access the full education benefits they have so rightfully earned through their great service to our nation."

-- Larry Gordon