Skip to main content

Governor Newsom Signs into Law Pilot Program to Assist Resident Tuition for Low-Income Students in Border Region

For immediate release:

(Sacramento) On Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 91 into law to eliminate the barrier of high tuition expenses for low-income students in the California-Mexican border region. The law will create a 5-year pilot program that allows students who live in Mexico and within 45 miles of the California border an exemption from out-of-state tuition rates. The law is based on a proposal from 2015 that allowed students near the California border in Nevada to pay a discounted tuition rate at Lake Tahoe Community College.

Southern California and Northern Baja California operate as one megaregion, where over 170,000 people cross the international border daily for work, school, or leisure. This law can address the demand for skilled workers and promotes a more diverse workforce and economy by reducing the barrier of high tuition expenses for low-income students.

"Last week, Governor Newsom signed into law Assembly Bill 91, creating a pilot program to allow low-income students who live near the California-Mexico border a discounted tuition rate,” said Assemblymember David Alvarez. “This pilot program can unlock a significant untapped resource to prepare a more diverse population among our workforce. I want to thank all the advocates who supported this bill and for fighting to expand education opportunities to every community."

"This is a transformational bill for the realities of our region. By expanding affordable access to our region's community colleges, our binational students will be better equipped to enter our workforce and be a part of this thriving binational economy,” said Dr. Mark Sanchez, Superintendent/President Southwestern College

The law goes into effect January 1, 2024.


The 80th Assembly District includes the communities of Barrio Logan, Logan Heights, Sherman Heights, Bonita, Lincoln Acres, Otay Mesa and San Ysidro, along with the cities of Chula Vista, National City and Imperial Beach.