Scaling Back

Gov. Phil Murphy had a big plan for free community college for all in New Jersey. It arrived this month, looking much diminished.

Instead of free college at a two-year school for anyone who wants it, income-qualifying students will get the balance paid on what they owe after their state and federal aid is applied — and only at a select few community colleges that are accepted into the program.

Atlantic Cape Community College and Cumberland County Community College will try to be among the few, and given the higher need in this region than up north they should have an edge. Even if they aren’t accepted, they’ll get $250,000 to help them plan for subsequent phases of the program.

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