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Gunning for CT Employers, Rhode Island Embraces Free College Tuition

March 6, 2017 By Staff
Gunning for CT Employers, Rhode Island Embraces Free College Tuition

A new story in Politico details efforts by Gov. Gina Raimondo (D-R.I.) to lure Connecticut employers to Rhode Island by bringing more college students in.

Look out Gov. Malloy! Your colleague in neighboring Rhode Island, Gov. Gina Raimondo (D-R.I.), is trying to attract Connecticut employers with … college grads.

At least, that’s what a new report from Politico‘s Kevin Robillard (Politico Pro subscription required) suggests (emphasis ours):

The free-college plans cross the ideological spectrum within the Democratic Party. Two of the party’s leading moderate governors, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, have rolled out their own plans to give students two years of free college.

…About 40 percent of Rhode Islanders have a college degree — above the national average of roughly 32 percent — but Raimondo noted the state is competing for employers with Massachusetts and Connecticut, two of the most educated states in the country. The state also has the second highest college debt burden for recent graduates. “My plan is meant to be bold,” she said.

Rhode Island’s program would cost $30 million a year, according to Raimondo. The state faces a $112 million deficit in fiscal year (FY) 2018.

Last month, the office of Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) was asked about free-tuition plans, by the CT Post. A Malloy spokeswoman wouldn’t say whether that plan “is the best way to ease the financial burden that comes with college.”