Governor Tom Vilsack proposes big tax credits for Iowa college grads who stay in Iowa. Vilsack proposes a six-hundred-dollar per year income tax credit for those who earn a four-year degree from an Iowa college. Those who hold a two-year community college degree would get a two-hundred-dollar-a-year tax credit. The credits would be claimed for 10 years. Vilsack says over a decade, the credits would cover all of the costs of community college tuition; half the tuition costs for the state universities and 20 percent of the tuition paid to a private Iowa college. Vilsack says Iowa needs to do something to fill job openings, and to keep Iowa-educated college graduates closer to home. Vilsack says the proposal is part of a broader goal of creating higher-growth, higher-tech industries in Iowa. About 32-thousand students graduate Iowa colleges every year, and two-thirds stay in Iowa. Vilsack’s goal is to increase the stay-in-Iowa rate by 10 percent. His proposal, though, wouldn’t be available to grads until 2003 and the tax credits would only apply to an undergraduate degree.
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