SB 708 Authorizes issuance of bonds to finance certain educational facility projects and modifies provisions regarding the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority
Sponsor: Shoemyer
LR Number: 2571S.01I Fiscal Note:
Committee: Education
Last Action: 3/8/2007 - Second Read and Referred S Education Committee Journal Page: S518
Title: Calendar Position:
Effective Date: Emergency Clause

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Current Bill Summary

SB 708 - This act authorizes the issuance of revenue bonds in order to fund certain listed educational facility projects. Currently, the state board of public buildings cannot issue revenue bonds for projects, in excess of a total par value of $775 million. This act increases the ceiling to $1.126 billion. Current law requires the General Assembly to approve projects financed by revenue bonds. This act provides that the General Assembly approves certain listed projects for research, academic and related facilities to be funded in part by revenue bonds to be paid out of future appropriations to be made by the General Assembly. The health and educational facilities authority may issued bonds not to exceed $356 million in principal amount to fund a portion of the cost of such projects and related facilities.

Moneys from the general revenue fund shall annually be used to pay debt service on bonds issued under this act in an amount not to exceed the amount of general revenue appropriated to fund higher education scholarships in fiscal year 2007.

This act modifies provisions regarding the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MoHELA). The purpose of MoHELA is modified so that ensuring students have access to low cost student loans, grants and loan forgiveness programs is the priority of the Authority. The MoHELA board members owe a fiduciary duty to postsecondary students to ensure access to such low cost loans, grants and loan forgiveness programs. Any sale of assets by MoHELA is limited to furthering the fiduciary duty of the board.

MoHELA shall, no later than August 28, 2007, transfer $210 million to the newly created MOHELA Scholarship Fund. MoHELA shall annually transfer an amount to the Fund that is not less than $22 million, but does not exceed 1.5% of the assets of MoHELA. The transferred amount shall be determined by the board after examination of the future viability of the Authority.

This act contains an emergency clause.