Autism Tuition Assistance Grant Program; established. (SB649)

Introduced By

Sen. Walter Stosch (R-Glen Allen) with support from co-patron Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel (R-Winchester)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Autism Tuition Assistance Grant Program established; mandated health insurance for autism.  Establishes a tuition assistance grant program for students with autism. The program provides grants of no more than $20,000 a year per student to a Virginia nonsectarian private school of choice for students identified as autistic and for whom individual education plans have been written.

The bill requires that in order to receive the grant the following conditions be satisfied: (i) the student has attended a public school in the Commonwealth and has received special education services for at least one year prior to the receipt of the grant; (ii) the parent has obtained acceptance for admission of the student to an eligible private school; (iii) the parent has executed and submitted to the division superintendent a written statement acknowledging that the public school has implemented an individualized educational program that is reasonably calculated to provide educational benefit; and (iv) the parent has requested the grant of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and notified the division superintendent of that request.

The bill further requires health insurers, health care subscription plans, and health maintenance organizations to provide coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders in individuals under age 21. Coverage is subject to an annual maximum benefit of $36,000.

The bill creates a subtraction for any grants included in the federal adjusted gross income of a parent. The bill establishes a voluntary contribution on the individual income tax return for taxpayers wishing to make a donation to the Grant Program.

The bill also repeals 58.1-439.12:01, which provides for a tax credit for cigarettes manufactured and exported, and requires that any current or future increase in the revenues of the Commonwealth attributable to the repeal of 58.1-439.12:01 shall be used for purposes of funding the Grant Program. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


01/20/2010Presented and ordered printed 10103496D
01/20/2010Referred to Committee on Commerce and Labor
02/01/2010Failed to report (defeated) in Commerce and Labor (7-Y 8-N) (see vote tally)