Press Releases


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Washington, DC, February 26, 2014 | comments

Rep. Tom Reed joined fellow New York Reps. Chris Collins (NY-27) and Chris Gibson (NY-19) to introduce the “Kids Before Cons Act” to protect taxpayers from being forced to fund college for convicted criminals. The bill comes in response to Governor Cuomo’s proposal to provide free college courses to inmates.

“It is simply not fair to ask hardworking taxpayers to pay for college for convicted criminals when they struggle to put their own children through college,” Rep. Tom Reed said. “College students in New York leave school with an average of nearly $26,000 in student loans, a huge undertaking for any family. New Yorkers are faced with enough taxes and mandates – they do not need to worry about funding college for convicted criminals when they are trying to care for their own families.”

The bill, led by Rep. Chris Collins, would prohibit Department of Education or Department of Justice funding from being used for college courses for incarcerated individuals in Federal or State prison.

“We’ve heard an outpouring of concern from constituents on the Governor’s proposal and rightly so,” Reed continued. “It’s an insult to hardworking taxpayers who follow the law that they should be expected to provide free college degrees for convicted criminals. We’re proud to stand up to protect families from an unfair use of tax dollars. Our children should be placed above convicted criminals.”

The bill does not ban states from using federal dollars to support GED or work training programs in prisons and correctional facilities. It also does not impact vocational or literacy training.


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Tags: Education

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