Federal Relations

US Senate to Vote on Earmark Ban

The Senate postponed until this morning a vote on a measure that would ban all earmarks for the next three years. The chamber will vote on an amendment to food safety legislation proposed by Senator Coburn (R-OK) that would create a Senate rule effectively prohibiting the chamber from considering any measure containing earmarks.  Coburn’s amendment

First Week of Lame Duck Session Answers Little

Members of Congress returned to DC last week for a lame-duck session intended to address pressing issues, namely the need to finish the fiscal year 2011 appropriations process as well as to extend various tax cut provisions that expire at the end of the calendar year. Members spent the first week of the session largely

Leadership announced for 112th Congress

Congress completed their leadership elections last week, which will take effect in January at the beginning of the 112th Congress. In the House Speaker of the House: John Boehner (R-OH) Majority Leader: Eric Cantor (R-VA) Minority Leader: Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) Majority Whip: Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) Minority Whip: Steny Hoyer (D-MD) In the Senate (no changes

National Education Technology Plan Unveiled

Education Secretary Arne Duncan released this week the Department’s plan for transforming American education through technology, a process that would create an engaging, state-of-the-art, cradle-to-college school system nationwide. The National Education Technology Plan was written and refined over a year and a half by leading education researchers, with input from the public, industry officials, and

Post-Election Legislative Agenda Uncertain

The mid-term congressional elections that took place on Tuesday, resulting in a Republican House majority and diminished Democratic Senate majority, will have a significant impact on issues of concern to the higher education community (FY11 appropriations, DREAM Act, COMPETES Act, tax policy) that were previously slated for consideration during the coming “lame-duck” session. The current

DoE Opens S&T Awards Nomination Period

The Department of Energy is now accepting nominations for the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Awards, which are among the longest running and most prestigious science and technology awards given by the U.S. Government.  The Lawrence Awards honor U.S. scientists and engineers at mid-career for exceptional contributions in research and development supporting the Department of Energy and

Pell Grant Funding on Post-Election Agenda

On November 15th, it is expected that Members of Congress will return to DC to address unfinished legislation before adjourning for the year. Several items of note are likely to considered, including additional funding to fill a shortfall in the Pell grant program. The anticipated $5.7 billion shortfall was created by increased student eligibility for

Letter to Congress Asks for Increased Spending for NIH

The Ad-Hoc Group for Medical Research, in collaboration with the Association of American Universities (AAU) drafted a letter to congress, urging them to provide NIH with the proposed $1 billion dollar increase in the Labor-HHS-Education spending bill. The increase was proposed by the administration and supported by both the House and Senate Labor-HHS-Ed subcommittees. The

Associations Convey FY 12 Higher Ed Priorities to OMB

This week two higher education associations – the Association of American Universities (AAU), and the Association for Public and Land Grant Universities (APLU) sent collaborative letters to the Obama Administration asking the White House to make higher education a priority in their FY 12 budget. The first letter called for the administration to again propose

‘Gathering Storm’ Report Revisited

Late last week, the National Academies released a follow-on to their widely discussed 2005 report “Rising Above the Gathering Storm.” The new report, “Rising Above the Gathering Storm, Revisited: Rapidly Approaching Category 5,” explains that many of the recommendations in the initial assessment have not been addressed. The National Academies press release follows.

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