2021 State Legislative Goals

Adopted by the ICCTA Board of Representatives on November 14, 2020

Local control of community colleges
Illinois community college boards are locally elected or appointed to make decisions affecting their local districts and are directly responsive to the electorate. A 2007 Judicial Circuit Court decision reaffirmed the concept that community colleges are units of local government. ICCTA will protect local control of community colleges and oppose any legislation that infringes on this autonomy.

Equitable funding for community college operations
Illinois community colleges operate high-quality institutions in a lean and fiscally responsible manner. ICCTA strongly advocates for funding to expand job-training programs in high-demand fields. Illinois community colleges will continue to provide critical educational services, including to the nation’s veterans, and to improve student outcomes at a low cost.

Equity in higher education
Community college trustees promote policies that support access, affordability, equity, and completion for all students. In tandem with efforts taking place on individual campuses to promote equitable participation and foster a welcoming learning environment, ICCTA supports policies aimed at closing educational and economic gaps of underrepresented populations and eliminating historic barriers to higher education.

MAP funding set-aside
The Governor has indicated strong support for the Monetary Award Program, which was reflected in an additional $50 million in funding in Fiscal Year 2020. MAP resources are essential for community college students, who are often the first in their family to attend college or come from families with distressed financial conditions. We believe that a portion of new money allocated to MAP should be earmarked for community college students.

Baccalaureate degrees
Allowing community colleges to offer bachelor’s degrees in limited fields of study enables development of more talent for the workforce, including technical fields that are changing and growing in geographically remote areas where employers struggle to hire employees with the needed qualifications. These degrees also provide an opportunity for employed adults to advance in their careers, addressing the interests and needs of adult learners who are unlikely to pursue a transfer pathway that requires relocating from their current home and employment. Presently, 24 states allow community colleges to award bachelor's degrees.

Funding for capital construction projects
Community colleges have capital and deferred maintenance needs that approach more than $1 billion statewide. ICCTA will pursue the efficient and timely distribution of community colleges in capital construction proposals that are brought before the 102nd Illinois General Assembly.