Federal Relations

Student Aid


August 13, 2018

Two Biggest Spending Bills Likely to See Senate Movement

After the Senate returns from its abbreviated August recess this Wednesday, it is expected to start debate on the two biggest spending bills, the Defense and Labor-HHS Appropriations Bills. The Senate will most likely combine the two measures into a single package, which, if passed, would include a total of approximately $857 billion in total spending for…


June 28, 2018

Appropriations Process Continues to Move Forward

The FY2019 appropriations process continued to move forward today. The House agreed to its version of the Defense spending bill by a vote of 359 to 49.  The detailed report for the bill is available here. In the Senate, the full Appropriations Committee adopted its version of the Labor-HHS-Education and Defense spending bills.  While most of…


June 26, 2018

Senate Bill Calls for Bigger NIH Increase

The Senate Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee reported out this morning its FY2019 bill. While most of the legislation’s details are not yet available, Chairman Roy Blunt (R-MO) highlighted during his remarks the $2-billion increase in the bill slated for NIH.  He also called out the proposed Pell Grant maximum of $6,195 and the continuation of the…


June 18, 2018

ED Delays Gainful Employment Regulations Again

In a notice posted  yesterday, the Education Department announcement that it will delay again by a year the implementation of “gainful employment” (GE) regulations.  Last July, the department decided to delay the implementation of the GE regulations until this July 1.  This notice pushes back the regulations until July 1, 2019. Read more about the background…


March 22, 2018

Additional Details of Omnibus Package Available

More details of the FY2018 Omnibus spending package unveiled last are now available. Within the budget for the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Nursing Workforce Development programs would be funded at $249.5 million, an increase of $20 million above the final FY2017 enacted levels.  The Public Health and Preventive Medicine program would be level funded…


March 21, 2018

Text of FY2018 Omnibus Released

The House Appropriations Committee has released text of the fiscal year 2018 omnibus spending bill. The House could vote as early as Thursday on the package. The House Rules Committee is expected to meet Wednesday night to report the bill to the floor for debate and a vote. The House typically observes a three-day rule before considering any…


January 19, 2018

Shut Down Likely

At midnight tonight, the Continuing Resolution passed in December 2017 will expire. Presently, it does not look like Congress will be able to agree on a short or long term funding solution, and a shutdown is highly likely. Agencies are circulating memos advising staff how to proceed in the high likelihood there is a shutdown…


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…


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…



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