Republic County joined the Rural Opportunity Zone (ROZ) Student Loan Repayment Program in 2012. Each year the county allocates funding for the program as the local match. Typically there has been a waiting list for these funds but due to applicants graduating out of the five-year program there are now matching funds of $8,791.19 for up to five more applicants. Each year a county or employer sponsor provides up to $1,500 to the State of Kansas who matches it to equal $3,000 per year for 5 years in the program for student loan repayment.
Applications for this fiscal year are due to the Kansas Department of Commerce by September 30th, 2021.
Online application – https://www.kansascommerce.gov/program/taxes-and-financing/roz/
Kansas is filled with the natural beauty, simplicity and communal bonds of rural life. We want you to experience the peace and joy of rural Kansas so much that we’ll even throw in some added bonuses.
The state of Kansas has designated 95 counties as “Rural Opportunity Zones,” which means moving there comes with significant added benefits. Designated counties offer one or both of the following financial incentives for new full-time residents:
1. Student Loan Repayment Assistance
- Administered By Kansas Department of Commerce (KDC)
- Partners with Counties, Cities, Employers, and Foundations
- Provides up to $15,000 in Student Loan Repayment Assistance over 5 years
2. 100 % State Income Tax Credit
- Administered By Kansas Department of Revenue (KDOR)
- Filed with state taxes; only eligible with online filing on KDOR website https://www.ksrevenue.org/prtaxcredits-roz.html
Student Loan Eligibility Requirements
- You must have a newly established permanent address in a participating county (see map above), so long as that address was established after the county began participating in the program.
- Applicants must have an active student loan balance in their name, as well as an associate’s, bachelor’s or post-graduate degree prior to moving to the participating county.
- To apply, you will need to provide proof of domicile in the ROZ County, proof of previous permanent residency (prior to earning your degree), transcripts with degree dates and student loan balance with distribution dates.
For questions regarding ROZ applications and eligibility please email KDC_ROZ@ks.gov for the quickest response.