U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff, D-Ga., visited Gwinnett Technical College in Lawrenceville on Friday to unveil a new proposal to make certain technical college programs available tuition free.

Ossoff made the announcement in midst of a tour of Gwinnett Tech’s campus, where he spoke with students at the school about their experiences in higher education. The senator’s proposal targets skills-oriented programs such as HVAC certificate programs, welding certificates, health care certification and automotive or commercial drivers license programs.

“I’m pushing, as Congress considers this reconciliation budget, that we pass legislation that will make technical school and job training programs 100% tuition free people in Georgia and Americans across the country,” Ossoff said as he stood in front of Gwinnett Tech’s horticulture building.

“We spend a lot of time on the policy debate focused on four-year college. We don’t focus enough on skills training, technical training. Precisely what this institution delivers for Georgians.”

It is unclear where in the budget the funding for Ossoff’s proposal would come from. The senator said there are ongoing discussions in Congress about how to fund priorities that are being pushed for inclusion in the reconciliation budget.

At the same time, Ossoff said Congress needs to be fiscally responsible when coming up with the budget.

“The most important announcement I want to emphasize today is that it is vital that we ensure Georgians and folks across the country can access this kind of skills training and technical training without having to worry about tuition as a barrier to access,” Ossoff said.

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta and eventually wandered to the University of Southern Mississippi for college. Earned a BA in journalism (double minor in political science and history). Previously worked in Florida and Clayton County.

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