(WEAU)--The budget standoff in Washington takes another victim. The Army, Marines and Air Force all announced the suspension of their college tuition assistance programs for military members.
There is no immediate negative affect on Wisconsin service members. Students enrolled in classes this semester through the program will be able to finish their course work. But the announcement means no new applications for will be accepted.
"We are hopeful that this will not continue, however, if it does we are working to identify some alternative funding streams. Wisconsin is way ahead of other states already in forward thinking programs,” said Supervisor of Student Services for Army National Guard Region 4, Norris Johnson.
Johnson says Wisconsin currently has 180 soldiers enrolled through the Army's Federal Tuition Assistance program.
Through the program, the soldiers are eligible for $4,500 a year that can be applied to state and out of state colleges, universities and online education options.
"There will be some negative to soldiers if the funding stream is not maintained,” said Johnson.
Johnson says Wisconsin Army National Guard members will continue to be able to access the federal GI Bill and still have access to state reimbursements, grants and scholarships to help offset the cost of future courses if the suspension is not lifted before the start of new classes.
But he says there is still some concern with how this could impact recruitment.
"Men and women are promised an education to join the military and stay in the military, our job, one of our main jobs is to make that happen and we do that through these programs," said Johnson.
Johnson says most Wisconsin Army National Guard soldiers use the federal assistance program for online courses at out of state schools. It's not known if and when the program will be reinstated.