Federal Relations

Higher Education


January 20, 2018

Shut Down

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) held a procedural vote, known as a cloture vote, to end debate and move on to voting with the the four-week continuing resolution (CR) that the House passed earlier this week. After holding the vote open for over an hour, the measure failed to receive the 60 votes needed…


December 13, 2017

House Committee Clears HEA Reauthorization Bill

In a marathon markup session that lasted well into the evening, the House Education and the Workforce Committee cleared yesterday the PROSPER Act (H.R. 4508), its version of the bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act (HEA), by a vote 23 to 17.  A copy of the bill is available here. During the session, approximately 60…


November 2, 2017

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

The House Republican Leadership unveiled their much-awaited Tax Cuts and American Jobs act. At first glance, the measure would: cut the corporate tax rate to 20%; reduce the seven individual tax brackets into four; nearly double the standard deduction to $24K (married), $18,300 (head of household), and 12,200 (single); increase the child care tax credit…


June 20, 2017

Senate Committee Holds Hearing on Campus “Free Speech”

The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing this morning on the issue of “free speech” on college campuses. The Judiciary Committee is one of three Senate committees– with Judiciary and the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committees being the other two– planning to hold hearings on the issue. More information about the hearing, including…


May 30, 2017

Memorial Day Recess, Health Care & Tax Reform Slowly Move, Omnibus Already?

The House and Senate are in recess to observe Memorial Day this week. Members returned to their home districts to work as efforts continue behind the scenes in DC on health care and tax reform. Health care continues to be a big unknown in the Senate. According to the most recent impact analysis released by the Congressional…


May 25, 2017

ED’s COO of Finanical Aid Quits

Tuesday night, James Runcie, chief operating officer of the Office of Federal Student Aid, quit \over what he said were simmering management problems at the agency that culminated in a dispute with DeVos over her insistence that he testify Wednesday before a congressional oversight panel. Politico has the story. 


May 10, 2017

Student Loan Rates to Increase

The cost of borrowing money from the federal government to pay for college will increase in the coming academic year. The interest rates on new federal student loans are set to jump by more than two-thirds of a percentage point following the U.S. Treasury Department’s sale today of 10-year notes, which is the government security…


May 4, 2017

Senate Clears Omnibus

The Senate passed H.R. 244, the FY 2017 Omnibus appropriations bill today which will fund the government through Sept. 30. The $1.07 trillion legislation now goes to President Donald Trump for his signature. The Senate tally was 79-18 . The omnibus legislation includes the 11 unfinished appropriations bills and intelligence authorization legislation, as well as funding for retired…


May 3, 2017

House Passes Omnibus, Senate Next

The House just passed a sweeping FY 2017 Omnibus appropriations bill (H.R.244) to fund the government through Sept. 30. The House is sending the $1.07 trillion spending package over to the Senate for a vote later this week, likely Friday. The House vote was 309-118. The lengthy legislation comprises 11 unfinished appropriations bills, along with an intelligence authorization bill…


May 1, 2017

FY 2017 Omnibus Released

At 2 am last night, House and Senate appropriators released the FY 2017 Omnibus, which  comprises the 11 unfinished FY 2017 appropriations bills, providing fresh spending instructions for nearly every corner of the federal government and formally appropriates more than $1 trillion in discretionary spending for FY 2017, in keeping with the spending limits agreed…



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