Federal Relations

August 16, 2013

Recently Introduced Bills Concerning Ocean Clean Up

There have been a couple of bills introduced this summer surrounding the issue of ocean cleanup in the wake of disaster and preventing future damage to oceans. Below is a quick overview and analysis of a couple of these bills that we have been keeping our eye on. S 1162 – A bill to authorize

August 8, 2013

Overview of STEM Education Bills Recently Introduced

Several bills have been introduced this summer surrounding the issue of STEM Education from elementary school through college, with the aim of increasing access for students to these subjects and preparing them for the 21st century workforce. Below is a quick overview and analysis of a few of these bills that we have been keeping

August 1, 2013

Student Loan Bill Approved by Congress

Last night, the House approved the Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act (HR 1911). This bill: Sets the annual interest rate on Direct Stafford loans and Direct Unsubsidized Stafford loans issued to undergraduate students at the rate on high-yield 10-year Treasury notes plus 2.05%, but caps that rate at 8.25%; Sets the annual interest rate on

July 31, 2013

House to take up Senate-passed Student Loan Deal Today

The House is expected to consider and vote on a bipartisan student loan deal that passed the Senate last week on an 81-18 vote. The deal ties interest rates to the rate on 10-year treasury bonds.  The bill is intended to be a long-term solution and also a retroactive fix to July 1st of this

July 23, 2013

Continuing Resolution Looking Likely

House Republican leadership is beginning to discuss the possibility of a stopgap spending measure – or continuing resolution (CR) – to keep the government running past the end of the federal fiscal year on September 30th. Discussions are beginning earlier than usual this year due to disagreements between the House and Senate are so large

July 18, 2013

Bipartisan Agreement Reached on Student Loan Rates

A bipartisan group of senators appear to have reached a deal that would provide a long-term fix to student loan rates, allowing them to increase up to a ceiling of 8.25 percent. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are supporting the compromise, which also would bring both subsidized and unsubsidized Stafford loans under the same

July 16, 2013

This Week in Congress

An overview of relevant House and Senate committee hearings and markups on the schedule this week: TUESDAY, July 16th Senate Appropriations Fiscal 2014 Appropriations: Commerce, Justice, and Science Subcommittee Markup 10 am, 192 Dirksen Senate Appropriations Fiscal 2014 Appropriations: Homeland Security Subcommittee Markup 10:30 am, 138 Dirksen House Energy & Commerce Energy and Commerce Bills

July 15, 2013

Things Heat Up in Congress

Congress returns to work this week under a heat advisory for our fist long stretch of very hot and humid weather in DC. Today is predicted to see 94 degrees in the nation’s capitol, but it will feel more like 101 according to weather.com. And today will likely be the coolest day of the week!

July 12, 2013

July Federal Update

FY14 APPROPRIATIONS The path to enacting FY14 appropriations measures is paved with legislative friction as Congress is showing no signs of undoing the sequester and the House and Senate chambers are working on vastly different overall budget numbers. At this point, there are three budgets — House, Senate, and White House — all of which

July 11, 2013

Student Loans: Cloture Vote Fails but Senate Makes Possible Deal

The Senate failed to invoke cloture and move forward S 1238, the Keep Student Loans Affordable Act, which is a measure that would keep the Stafford subsidized interest rate at 3.4 percent for another year. The vote was 51-49 and 60 votes are needed to invoke cloture, which would end debate on the measure. However, later

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