Maryland’s Hope Scholarship program may face a $4 million cut for next year if a proposal by Gov. Robert Ehrlich Jr. passes the legislature. The governor wishes to move the money from the merit-based Hope program into a need-based grant program for students he believes have been left behind by the Hope scholarship. According to the proposal, a student with established need would have to meet only minimum admission requirements to qualify for a grant, for a maximum of $2,700. Last year, Maryland’s spending on Hope scholarships was $16 million; Georgia spent approximately $360 million in 2002.