The AB 91 initiative’s signature and veto deadlines expire on the 14th of this month (October).
Assemblyman David Alvarez’s proposal has now cleared the strict requirements of the Assembly and the State Senate and awaits Governor Gavin Newsom’s approval.
Doctors Sonya Christian and Mark Sánchez, Chancellor of the Community Colleges of California and President/Superintendent of Southwestern College, respectively, expressed their opinions. At the same time, they awaited the ruler’s affirmative reaction regarding his impending decision on the law.
“AB 91 advances the goals of Vision 2030 by removing barriers for low-income community college students residing in the California-Baja region…These students pay more than $9,000 annually in tuition fees outside the state”.
They caution that this “prevents them from enrolling and leads to a loss of skills that may help particular industry demands and growth in the California-Baja region. Mexican students’ tuition expenses would be eliminated under AB 91, enabling them to pursue their educational goals, find employment, and strengthen the local economy”.
Educational officials argue that border officials in California need to catch up in making decisions regarding the education sector despite California’s reputation as a leader, innovator, and trendsetter. California has always promoted itself as a state where “the future happens first,” but its educational policies are not keeping up with this reputation.
They provide examples of agreements between the Mexican government and other border states.
Thus, they highlight the Texas state law that “the Exemption of Mexicans Citizens with Financial Needs-Border Nations enables that a small number of people, with financial needs and who are residents of Mexico, enroll in any public University of Texas, paying in-state tuition.”
In Arizona, they add that through the agreements in education with entities such as Baja California, Chihuahua, Sinaloa, and Sonora “offers first-year students, residents of these states, the discount of registration, a reduction of 50%”.
New Mexico State University offers the Discover Program to new students who are Mexican citizens. This program provides a discounted tuition rate, known as the Discover tuition rate, which allows students from Mexico to save nearly $10,000 per year.