The Honorable Casper R. Taylor, Jr.
Speaker of the House
State House
Annapolis, MD 21401

Dear Mr. Speaker:

In accordance with Article II, Section 17 of the Maryland Constitution, I have today vetoed House Bill 1231 - Higher Education - Student Financial Assistance - Retention of Unused Funds.

House Bill 1231 provides that all State scholarship appropriations that are not used by the end of the fiscal year may not revert to the State treasury. The funds must be used to make awards to students during subsequent fiscal years and may not be used for administrative purposes.

In 1999, Maryland law was changed to allow the carryover of funds for the Educational Excellence Award (EEA) program, providing the State Scholarship Administration with the ability to retain approximately 62.5% of its excess scholarship funds. Due to the current scholarship granting process for the EEA program, it was felt that carrying over these funds would assist more individuals because money would be available to be granted in the beginning of the school year.

Under current law, the State Scholarship Administration has the ability to retain and transfer excess scholarship funds through the budget amendment process. Through the budget amendment process $2,500,000 was recently transferred from four scholarship programs to nine other programs, including $1,076,248 to the Educational Excellence Award program.

Since the current budget amendment process already authorizes the Governor to approve transfers between funds and meet the purposes of this bill, I have vetoed House Bill 1231.

Parris N. Glendening