PHOENIX — Courting a possible lawsuit, state senators voted Wednesday to direct the Board of Regents and community college boards to create special tuition rates for students who graduate from Arizona high schools but don’t qualify as in-state residents.
The main beneficiaries would be “dreamers,” as immigrant students in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program are known.
Arizona’s public colleges and universities have two distinct tuition rates, one for those who qualify as Arizona residents and one for those who do not.
Senate Bill 1217, proposed by Sen. Heather Carter, R-Cave Creek, would mandate a third rate.
Her bill doesn’t specifically say what that new rate should be. Carter said she envisions it would be set somewhere between what residents pay and what is charged to everyone else.
She said this could help students who graduated from an Arizona high school, moved elsewhere but now want to attend one of the state’s three universities without paying out-of-state tuition.