COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – Governor Henry McMaster on Tuesday signed a bill to help veterans with in-state tuition for higher education.

The bill, S.241, allows veterans or their dependents GI Bill education benefits for in-state tuition at universities, colleges, and technical colleges in South Carolina regardless of when they left the service.

According to Gov. McMaster’s office, veterans previously had to enroll within three years of leaving the service to receive immediate in-state tuition benefits.

“South Carolina has a long history of being a military-friendly state that takes pride in its veterans,” said Gov. McMaster. “This legislation is a way for South Carolina to honor and reward those who served while also attracting veterans with unique skills and experiences to our colleges, universities, and communities.”

To receive in-state tuition rates, the veteran or their dependent must be a South Carolina resident while enrolled at the South Carolina institution.

“We need to continue to do what South Carolina has done forever, don’t pity our veterans but take pride in them,” said S.C. Department of Veterans Affairs (SCDVA) Secretary William Grimsley, who attended Tuesday’s bill signing. “This bill will contribute to South Carolina by allowing veterans to come to our public intuitions to earn their degrees and then go back and make an impact in our communities.”

 The legislation went into effect on May 6, 2021.