Federal Relations

May 29, 2014

House Continues CJS, House Science Cmte Passes FIRST

Adjourning well after midnight last night, the House will consider its floor consideration of the Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bill this morning. The House is expected to pass the measure late tonight. Thus far, the House has considered a number of amendments, and some of interest are below. Passed Amendments: An amendment, offered by Mr. Reichert

May 22, 2014

House Science Committee Passes FIRST (almost)

In an incredibly partisan and late mark up, the House Science Committee finally finished considering the 27 proposed and debated amendments to the FIRST Act (HR 4186). Given the lengthy and contentious nature of the hearing, the roll call votes and final passage of the measure have been postponed until next week. Therefore, as of

Patent Reform Legislation Pulled from Agenda

Consideration of comprehensive patent legislation appears to be off the agenda for the year after Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Leahy (D-VT) pulled it from his committee’s agenda on Wednesday. He cited frustration with unproductive negotiations as the reason for the turnaround. The measure had been slated for consideration by the committee today but less than

May 21, 2014

U.S. Department of Education Announces $75 Million First in the World Competition

To spur innovation in higher education aimed at helping more students access and complete a college degree or credential, the U.S. Department of Education announced late last week the availability of $75 million in the First in the World (FITW) program. The grants will fund the development and testing of innovative approaches and strategies at

May 19, 2014

House Committee to Consider the FIRST Act

On Wednesday, the House Science Committee will mark up HR 4186, the FIRST Act, a bill which will reauthorize NIST, NSF and a host of other federal science-focused programs. This is the 113th Congress’s version of the America COMPETES reauthorization. While in previous Congresses this legislation has been bipartisan and uncontroversial, the FIRST Act has

Congress: Issues to Watch this Week

The House is back in session this week after a weeklong recess period. They will be in session for two weeks before taking another break during the first week in June. The Senate is in this week, but will recess during the week of Memorial Day. Appropriations:  Appropriators appear to be adhering to their plans

May 9, 2014

House Passes ESRA

The House of Representatives approved the Strengthening Education through Research Act (H.R. 4366) on Thursday night, with bipartisan support. The bill reauthorizes the Education Sciences Reform Act. The measure will now head to the Senate.

May 8, 2014

Senate Confirms Ted Mitchell

This afternoon, the Senate confirmed Ted Mitchell as the new Under Secretary of Education.  Mitchell succeeds Martha Kanter, who stepped down in December to take a post at NYU. Mitchell has been President at the New School Venture Fund. Mitchell was nominated in October of 2013. The nomination was approved unanimously by voice vote.

May 6, 2014

House to Vote on ESRA Reauthorization

The House is expected to consider H.R. 4366, the Strengthening Education through Research Act on Wednesday of this week. The legislation would reauthorize the Institute of Education Science, which is the research arm of the Department of Education. Reauthorizing legislation of research agencies is typically noncontroversial, and surprisingly, that spirit has held true this year

May 5, 2014

New Report on Trends in State Funding for Higher Education

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities released a study late last week about national trends in state funding allocations to public higher educational institutions. The report explains broad national trends in cost shifting of tuition from the state to the student. Overall, after counting for inflation, forty-eight states are still spending less per student in

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