This Week in Congress

Congress returns to work today after a week-long recess period.   The Senate convenes at 2:00pm and continues debate of the student loan interest rate bill.  The House is also in at 2:00pmwith votes expected around 6:30pm.  This afternoon, the House Budget Committee will mark up two bills:  The Sequester Replacement Act of 2012 (HR 4966)… Read More


Student Loan Interest Rates

President Obama used his weekly address to call on Congress to prevent student interest rates from doubling in July.  He believes that we should be doing everything we can to put higher education within reach for every American because “at a time when the unemployment rate for Americans with at least a college degree is… Read More


Ryan Budget Proposes Deeper Cuts to Student Financial Aid

Last week, Rep. Paul Ryan (WI), unveiled his FY2013 budget resolution calling for an overhaul to the tax code and deeper reductions in spending. Among Ryan’s proposals was limiting the growth of federal financial aid for college students, focusing it on low-income students. More specifically, Rep. Ryan proposes a budget that: Eliminates the in-school interest… Read More


FY13 Budget Supports Research, Student Aid

The Obama Administration’s FY13 budget, released on February 13, reflects a continuing commitment to increased federal investments in research and education.  The budget would increase funding for the National Science Foundation (NSF); the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Science and ARPA-E; and the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) in the Department of Agriculture,… Read More


White House Unveils Draft ‘College Scorecard’

The White House is seeking input from colleges and consumers about a draft “College Scorecard” that would provide prospective students with information about a college’s cost, graduation rate, average debt burden, loan-repayment rate, and job-placement rate. The scorecard, which President Obama announced in a speech at the University of Michigan last week, is designed to… Read More


Sequestration: What it means for Federal Research Funding

Automatic spending cuts, or sequestration, was established through the Budget Control Act passed by Congress last August and is set to go into effect January 2013.  The sequestration process has great implications for all federal discretionary programs, including most – if not all – of federally funded research programs. Below is a link to a… Read More


Obama proposes Race to the Top for College Affordability

Details are beginning to emerge on Obama’s proposal to make college affordable.  He spoke to this during his State of the Union address on Tuesday, and again today at an event at the University of Michigan.  US Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan has also been talking about this issue since late last year, and… Read More


Senate, House Resolutions Recognize UW 150th

Resolutions were introduced in both the House and the Senate (H.Res.458 and S.Res.313) recognizing the UW’s 150th year and its’ contributions to Washington state and the nation. The Senate resolution – introduced by Senator Cantwell and cosponsored by Senator Murray, passed the chamber this morning by unanimous consent. The House Resolution was introduced by Congressman… Read More


President Obama Announces New ‘Know Before You Owe’ Student Loan Initiative

President Obama announced today at a speech at the University of Colorado Denver, a new initiative called ‘Know Before You Owe’ designed to make college loans more affordable and reduce the financial burden on recent graduates – many of whom are struggling to find employment. The administration is essentially speeding up by 2 years, a… Read More


House Appropriations Releases Draft Labor-HHS-Ed Spending Bill

The House Appropriations Committee released their draft Labor-HHS-Education spending bill today in which they executed several spending cuts and revoked all additional funding for “Obamacare”. Some highlights: Health & Human Services The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is funded at $6.7 billion, a $1.5 billion increase over FY11 levels The National Institutes of Health… Read More