Federal Relations

The Aftermath…

Both the House and Senate are in recess this week for the Fourth of July holiday.  Late last week, both chambers demonstrated that they can advance legislation by reauthorizing federal highway and transit programs for two years and preventing Stafford student loan interest rate increases.  Also last week, the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care

Student Loans and Transportation Research

The House and Senate both will take action today on the conference agreement to HR 4348, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21). The agreement reauthorizes federal highway, transit, and other surface transportation programs through September 30, 2014, at current funding levels with inflationary increases for certain programs. It consolidates or

Deal Reached on Student Loans

On Tuesday, Senate leaders announced that they reached a deal to prevent student loan interest rates from doubling from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent, but they are still determining whether to attach that “deal” to a measure that would reauthorize highway programs, which is still being negotiated. Congress must take action on both issues –

“DREAM Act” Closer to Reality

President Obama took executive action today to end the deportation of people who would be eligible for the DREAM Act if it were enacted. The new policy, effective immediately, will grant the people eligible for the program renewable, deferred action on their immigration status and the ability to apply for work authorization. The DREAM Act

NRC Report on Research Universities

This morning the National Research Council’s (NRC) Committee on Research Universities released the long anticipated 220-page report:  Research Universities and the Future of America: Ten Breakthrough Actions Vital to Our Nation’s Prosperity and Security. In the report, the committee states: “America’s public research universities are at great risk” and makes 10 major recommendations, including calling for

Senate L-HHS-ED Appropriations

Earlier today, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), Education Appropriations Subcommittee approved their FY 2013 appropriations measure by a vote of 10-7.  That bill would provide $158.8 billion in discretionary spending for the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, as well as related agencies.  This is about $2 billion more

Reports and Papers

On Thursday, the National Academies of Science will officially release a report entitled “Research Universities and the Future of America: Ten Breakthrough Actions Vital to Our Nation’s Prosperity and Security.” This report is being billed as a follow-up report to the National Academies report Rising Above the Gathering Storm, which in 2007 issued a clarion

Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations

House appropriators say the traditionally controversial Labor-HHS-Education appropriations measure could move forward in committee in June. Labor-HHS-Education Subcommittee Chairman Denny Rehberg (R-MT) said Thursday that he would like to unveil his measure when the House returns from its recess the week of June 18th. Last year, the measure was not marked up by the House

Student Loan Interest Rates

The Senate will take up a measure today that would prevent subsidized student loan interest rates from doubling this July.  While both parties agree that they want to stop the rate hike from going forward, Senate republican leadership indicated Monday that they will likely filibuster the democratic measure because it opposes the proposed offset.   Senate

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)

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