WASHINGTON — A bill revived in Congress would pay for the college education of individuals whose spouses were service members killed in the line of duty.
Current law limits education allowances to $936 per month for military widows and widowers. The legislation, introduced Thursday and estimated to cost $200 million over 10 years, would cover full in-state college tuition and fees, plus provide a monthly living stipend and book allowance.
“By ensuring that spouses have access to an education, we can help these families put their lives back together and build bright futures for their children,” said Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., a sponsor along with Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore.
Children of service members killed in duty already qualify for similar benefits under the Fry Scholarship program.
The Senate held a hearing in June on similar legislation by Merkley and Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., but the bill was not passed during the session.