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New York has become the first state to approve a “free college” plan for middle-class families. A $153 billion budget deal reached Sunday night includes a new Excelsior Scholarship. It will cover tuition at the state’s public colleges and universities for families earning up to $125,000 a year. But as any family paying for college knows all too well, tuition is just one part of the bill. The program only covers expenses left over after federal and other grants run out and doesn’t include room and board.

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Follow Amy Scott at @amyreports