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Court Upholds Free Tuition for Texas Vets

AUSTIN, Texas — A federal appeals court has upheld a much-watched Texas program that promises free college educations to military veterans if they lived in the state when they enlisted.

The Hazlewood Act dates to the 1920s. State lawmakers expanded the program in 2009 to include the veterans’ children. Veterans also qualified if they entered military service at a Texas installation.

A veteran who enlisted in Georgia, and moved to Texas after he was discharged, challenged the law’s Texas enlistment requirements. He won a lower court ruling—a decision that state officials worried would send the program’s costs skyrocketing.

Texas appealed to the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. It ruled Thursday that Texas-residency rules were not unconstitutional, and said the state has the right to regulate its own education system.

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