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Posts Tagged ‘appropriations’

Announcing New On-Demand Webinar on The Federal Budget & Appropriations Process: What’s the Difference?

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

This webinar continues a series of On-Demand webinars produced by NASDCTEc staff.

The Federal Budget & Appropriations Process: What’s the Difference?

Understanding the federal budget and appropriations process can often seem like a daunting task. This webinar will explain how the federal budget is created and also illustrate the process by which the many departments, agencies, and programs– including the Perkins Act Basic state grant program– receive funding. In an ever more difficult fiscal environment, it is critical to have a full understanding of how these important processes work and how they will likely impact Career Technical Education (CTE) programs throughout the country.

Narrator: Steve Voytek, Government Relations Associate, NASDCTEc

Access this and other On-Demand recordings here.

Length: 12:08

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Public Policy, Webinars
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Legislative Update: Senate Education Committee Passes WIA Reauthorization Bill

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

CapitolCongress Reaches Agreement on Student Loan Interest Rates

This week, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill to link interest rates on student loans to economic factors; if the economy improves, interest rates would rise. The bill, an amendment to the Higher Education Act (HEA), has already been approved by the U.S. Senate and will likely soon be signed into law by President Obama.

Once enacted, the new law would impact postsecondary students and their families starting this fall with interest rates of:

The White House notes that the new loan rates would immediately impact 11 million borrowers and reduce average undergraduate interest costs by $1,500.

Though the amendment successfully passed the House and the Senate, the topic of student loan interest rates is likely to emerge again as the reauthorization of HEA begins to take shape this fall.

Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act

The House Education and the Workforce Committee asked education stakeholders to submit their views on policies that should be included in the upcoming reauthorization of HEA. NASDCTEc has worked with members in the higher education community to identify our broad priorities for HEA, which include improving data alignment between key pieces of legislation, reducing barriers to financial aid for traditional and non-traditional postsecondary students (including reinstating the Ability to Benefit option), and ensuring access to Title II funds for Career Technical Education (CTE) teacher preparation and professional development.

The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) also expects to announce a call for public input on HEA reauthorization soon.

Reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act

After a brief markup of the Workforce Investment Act of 2013 (WIA), or S. 1356, the Senate HELP Committee approved the bill by a vote of 18-3. An amendment to increase the accountability of Job Corps programs was included. The bill will next be considered by the full Senate.

NASDCTEc is pleased that Congress is moving forward with the reauthorization of WIA and has taken into consideration several areas that are important for CTE, including promoting programs that result in industry-recognized postsecondary credentials and align with the needs of local economies.

However, the bill passed by the HELP Committee included an area of major concern– a funding infrastructure mechanism for One-Stop programs under WIA – that would negatively impact CTE by siphoning funding from the Carl D. Perkins Career Technical Education Act (Perkins). Read more about this issue and our concerns in this blog.

As the bill moves to the full Senate, please encourage your networks to contact your Senators. Ask them not to use Perkins funds for WIA infrastructure, and urge them to maintain current law.

FY 2014 Updates

At the end of this week, Congress leaves for summer recess without having reached agreement on FY 2014 spending bills, total spending levels, or what to do about sequestration. When they return to Capitol Hill in five weeks, members will have just three weeks to reach an agreement on these issues to avoid a possible government shut down on October 1, 2013.

On a conference call this week held by the Senate Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee, Chairman Mark Begich (D-AK) and Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) spoke of the damage caused by sequestration and its negative impact on the economy and the middle class. The Senators encouraged listeners to use the Congressional recess wisely by contacting Congress members to specifically describe how sequestration is hurting constituents in their state or district. NASDCTEc urges you to contact your Congress members and tell them how sequestration is damaging CTE programs and your local economy.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in Legislation, News, Public Policy
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July CTE Monthly: Driving the STEM, IT and Manufacturing Workforce

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

CTE Monthly, a collaborative publication from the Association for Career and Technical Education and the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium, features the latest news on Career Technical Education (CTE) from across the nation for CTE stakeholders and Members of Congress.

In the July edition, read more about:

View archived CTE Monthly newsletters and other advocacy resources on our Advocacy Tools webpage.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in NASDCTEc Resources, News, Public Policy, Research
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Legislative Update: House Ed Committee Passes ESEA Reauthorization Bill

Friday, June 21st, 2013

CapitolHouse Education Committee Passes ESEA Reauthorization Bill

The House Education and the Workforce Committee passed this week the Student Success Act, or H.R. 5, as amended by a substitute from Representative Todd Rokita (R-IN). The Republican ESEA reauthorization measure passed on a party line vote of 24-15. Overall, the bill aims to eliminate more than 70 federal education programs and consolidate funding into a larger stream with more flexible uses. The bill would also eliminate the federal maintenance of effort requirement to give states more funding flexibility.

The Student Success Act would also keep current testing requirements in place but would allow states to make decisions on school improvement. Some opponents are concerned that the bill’s allowance of alternative assessments for many students in special education would result in an inequitable system.

Representative Rokita’s substitute, which was accepted as part of the overall bill this week, prohibits the Secretary of Education from requiring that states adopt the Common Core State Standards.

Read more about the ESEA reauthorization proposal on the Senate side. Due to stark differences between the House and Senate bills, conference on a final bill is unlikely to occur until the end of this year.

Senate Holds WIA Hearing

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing this week to begin its long overdue reauthorization process for the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) and the rest of the committee heard testimonies from local and state workforce leaders on how federal policy can better support the workforce through WIA.

One panelist, a CEO from a company that connects employers with workforce talent, spoke about the importance of counselors and how the stigma around jobs requiring technical skills is inaccurate and needs to change. Overall, the panelists encouraged greater collaboration between workforce development agencies and businesses, and updated federal legislation to support the increasingly diverse individuals needing workforce services.

Senate Budget Committee Hearing on President’s FY 14 Budget for Education

Secretary Duncan testified this week in front of the Senate Budget Committee on the President’s FY14 budget request for education. The request proposed funding the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (Perkins) at its pre-sequestration level of $1.1 billion.

During the hearing, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) discussed her disapproval of the House budget proposal and the need to replace sequestration cuts, which have resulted in a $58 million decrease to Perkins. Secretary Duncan also indicated that the House FY 14 proposal would reduce total federal education funding by 18 percent in addition to the sequestration cuts.

Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), a proponent of Career Technical Education (CTE), expressed concern to Duncan over the lack of focus on CTE and the exclusion of certificates and apprenticeships from college completion statistics.

U.S. Department of Education Announces Flexibility Waivers

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced this week two flexibility waivers for which states can apply. The first waives a component of the current Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) waivers, permitting states to delay until the 2016-2017 school year the use of student growth data in making personnel decisions. This change impacts the 34 states and the District of Columbia that had approved waivers before the summer of 2012 by delaying implementation for one year. States without ESEA waivers will not be impacted.

The second flexibility waiver announced by the Department is focused on “double-testing flexibility.” The testing consortia PARCC and Smarter Balanced will begin field testing their assessments next school year. To avoid administering two similar tests to some students in the same year – the field test and the state’s current assessment – the Department is accepting requests from states that would like to administer a single assessment (either assessment is permitted) to students in the 2013 – 2014 school year. Accountability expectations would remain the same for the school year.

FY14 Appropriations

The Senate Appropriations Committee this week approved its FY 2014 302(b) allocations by a party line vote of 15-14. The overall funding level was set at $1.058 trillion, $91 billion higher than the House’s $967 billion level. The allocation for the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS-ED) is $164.33 billion compared to the $121.8 billion Labor-HHS-ED allocation proposed by the House.

The Senate Labor-HHS-ED appropriations bill is scheduled for markup on July 9, 2013 in subcommittee and on July 11, 2013 in full committee.

Wyden Amendment on Occupational Coding of UI Wage Records

Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced this week an amendment to improve the collection and use of labor market information by amending the new immigration bill being considered by the Senate. The amendment would require employers to add occupational codes to the employee reports they send to their state UI agency. Part of the amendments intent is to create a public record of the number of people employed in technical jobs to assess the availability of qualified applicants from the U.S. before hiring individuals on an H1-B visa.

The CTE community would benefit from this information because it would allow us to observe whether or not individuals are employed in their area of study and to see how individuals move along a career path.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in News, Public Policy
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Legislative Update: ESEA Update; New CTE-Related Bills Proposed

Friday, June 14th, 2013

Rep. Langevin Op-Ed and Announcement of Counseling Legislation

Representative Jim Langevin (D-RI), co-chair of the Congressional Career Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, and Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) announced in an op-ed this week new legislation to authorize funding for comprehensive career counseling services. The “Counseling for Career Choice Act,” which would amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), would authorize grants to successful applicants that are prepared to implement comprehensive school counseling programs that align to a statewide counseling framework. The legislation is a companion bill to one introduced earlier this year by Senator Begich.

In the op-ed, Representative Langevin highlighted the importance of career counseling in making students aware of the many education and training opportunities available after high school – whether a two-year degree, apprenticeship, certificate, four-year degree, or other option – to help meet their future educational and career goals. Langevin also stressed the link between economic competitiveness and education and training, and the role of CTE in closing the skills gap. Staff will continue to work with Representatives Langevin and Bonamici to promote important aspects of CTE, such as counseling, in upcoming legislation.

Rep. McNerney  Introduces GREEN Act

Representative Jerry McNerney (D-CA) introduced this week the Grants for Renewable Energy Education for the Nation (GREEN) Act to increase education and training in the clean energy sector through CTE programs of study. The GREEN Act would authorize $100 million in competitive grants to postsecondary institutions, local education agencies, CTE schools, and community partners to develop clean energy programs of study and curriculum. The bill would also authorize funding to build energy-efficient CTE facilities and promote renewable energy practices.

The clean energy sector currently employs around 3 million Americans and growth of the sector is doubling that of the overall economy. CTE programs will be instrumental to providing education and training to individuals pursuing careers in clean energy.

In Representative McNerney’s press release for the bill, Kimberly Green, Executive Director at NASDCTEc, expressed support on behalf of our members: “We applaud Congressman McNerney’s introduction of the Grants for Renewable Energy Education Act. Promoting energy efficient Career Technical Education facilities and supporting the development of Career Technical Education programs of study in the fields of clean energy, renewable energy, and energy efficiency will ensure that the United States has the workforce needed to build, support and maintain the energy infrastructure essential for our country’s future.”

ESEA Update:

ESEA, currently enacted through the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB), expired at the end of FY 2008 and has since been eligible for reauthorization. As we reported last week, several ESEA reauthorization proposals have been introduced in Congress. See a side-by-side comparison of the proposals here.

Senate Approves Democrat ESEA Bill

This week, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee approved the Democrats’ ESEA reauthorization bill, the Strengthening America’s Schools Act, on a party-line vote of 12-10. HELP Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) noted that he would like to move the bill to a floor vote this year but that this is unlikely to happen before September. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), whose ESEA reauthorization proposal substitute was voted down by the committee, stated that he would like to amend Senator Harkin’s bill significantly when it reaches the floor. Read more about the proposals on our blog.

Ten amendments to the bill were adopted including:

Thirteen amendments were offered but not passed including:

House ESEA Proposal Markup Set

House Republicans on the Education and the Workforce Committee introduced their ESEA reauthorization proposal, the Student Success Act (H.R.5) on June 6, 2013. A markup of the bill has been scheduled for June 19, 2013. Read more about the proposal here.

FY 2014 Appropriations :

House Appropriations

This week, the House Appropriations Committee held a full Committee markup of the defense appropriations bill. Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) attempted to amend the bill by bringing FY 2014 funding levels for the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS-ED) to pre-sequestration levels. The amendment was rejected on a party line vote of 21-29.

In May, the House Appropriations Committee released its draft FY 2014 302(b) allocations, which establish a cap on spending for each of the appropriations bills. The allocations suggest devastating cuts for programs with funding allocated under Labor-HHS-ED. It is unclear when markup of the House Labor-HHS-ED bill will be held.

Senate Appropriations

The Senate Appropriations Committee plans to release formal 302(b) allocations at the full committee markup on June 20, 2013. Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, has scheduled a markup of the Senate Labor-HHS-ED appropriations bill on July 9, 2013 in subcommittee and on July 11, 2013 in full committee. Staff will continue to monitor these events and advocate on Capitol Hill for education and CTE funding.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in News, Public Policy
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Legislative Update: Appropriations, Community College Grants

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

Secretary Duncan Testifies Before Appropriations Subcommittees

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan recently spoke before both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittees on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Other Related Agencies about President Obama’s FY14 budget proposal, which includes a number of proposals related to Career Technical Education (CTE).

Secretary Duncan’s written statement for the House Subcommittee contained a section called Supporting Career-Readiness for All which supports President Obama’s request to restore FY12 funding levels for the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (Perkins). Secretary Duncan also described the Administration’s request for $300 million to support the High School Redesign program and $42 million for the development of dual enrollment programs that align with career pathways and local workforce needs. The delayed release of the President’s budget, which is traditionally released in February, will likely mean it holds less influence than it normally would in affecting spending and policy changes, because the House and the Senate have already passed their own budgets, but it is still very important.

Community College Grants

Last week, the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Labor announced the third round of grant funding for the Trade Adjustment Community College and Career Training program. The latest grant makes available $474.5 million to help community colleges strengthen training partnerships with employers and will invest in innovative and evidence-based training models that include strong partnerships with local employers and employer organizations.

The grant is part of President Obama’s plan to ensure every American has at least one year of postsecondary education. Consortia or institutions that are interested in applying for funding can find more details here.

Representatives Thompson and Langevin Call for More Career Technical Education Funding

Today, Representatives Thompson (R-PA-5) and Langevin (D-RI-2) sent a Dear Colleague letter to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Other Related Agencies requesting level funding for Perkins in FY14. The letter highlights the importance of CTE programs in ensuring workers are prepared to hold jobs in high-wage, high-skill and high-demand sectors. The letter has been co-signed by 61 members of the U.S. House of Representatives; the list can be found at the end of this post.

The leadership from these representatives in promoting CTE in the current financial climate is commendable, and we encourage you to send a note of thanks, particularly if one of the representatives listed is based in your state. If you wish to express your appreciation to Representatives Langevin or Thompson for their leadership in organizing this Dear Colleague letter, you can contact them at their Washington D.C. offices at (202) 225-2735 or (202) 225-5121 respectively.

Arizona

Representative Raul Grijalva (D)

California

Representative Ami Berra (D)

Representative Lois Capps (D)

Representative Tony Cardenas (D)

Representative John Garamendi (D)

Representative Jared Huffman (D)

Representative Jerry McNerney (D)

Representative Linda Sanchez (D)

Representative Mark Takano (D)

Representative Juan Vargas (D)

Colorado

Representative Jared Polis (D)

Connecticut

Representative Joe Courtney (D)

District of Columbia

Representative Eleanor Holmes Norton (D)

Florida

Representative Patrick E. Murphy (D)

Guam

Representative Madelaine Bordallo (D)

Hawaii

Representative Colleen Hanabusa (D)

Illinois

Representative Bill Foster (D)

Representative Janice Schakowsky (D)

Indiana

Representative Larry Buschon (R)

Representative Andre Carson (D)

Iowa

Representative David Loebsack (D)

Kentucky

Representative John Yarmuth (D)

Maine

Representative Michael Michaud (D)

Representative Chellie Pingree (D)

Maryland

Representative Chris Van Hollen (D)

Massachusetts

Representative Michael Capuano (D)

Representative William Keating (D)

Michigan

Representative John Conyers Jr. (D)

Representative John Dingell (D)

Representative Sander Levin (D)

Representative Gary Peters (D)

Minnesota

Representative Timothy Walz (D)

Representative Rick Nolan (D)

Missouri

Representative Emanuel Cleaver (D)

New Hampshire

Representative Carol Shea-Porter (D)

New Jersey

Representative Rush Holt (D)

Representative Bill Pascrell (D)

Representative Albio Sires (D)

New Mexico

Representative Ben Ray Lujan (D)

New York

Representative William Owens (D)

Representative Louise McIntosh Slaughter (D)

Representative Paul Tonko (D)

Representative Charles Wrangel (D)

North Carolina

Representative Mike McIntyre (D)

Northern Marianas

Gregorio Kilili Camacho (D)

Oregon

Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D)

Representative Peter DeFazio (D)

Pennsylvania

Representative Matt Cartwright (D)

Representative Allyson Schwartz (D)

Rhode Island

Representative David Cicilline (D)

Texas

Representative Joaquin Castro (D)

Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson (D)

Representative Mark Veasey (D)

Vermont

Representative Peter Welch (D)

Virginia

Representative Gerald Connolly (D)

Washington

Representative Suzan DelBene (D)

Representative Denny Heck (D)

Representative Rick Larsen (D)

West Virginia

Representative Nick Rahall (D)

Wisconsin

Representative Thomas Petri (R)

Representative Mark Pocan (D)

David Beckett, Advocacy Manager

By David in Legislation, Public Policy
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Spring Meeting Recap: A View From the Hill – Appropriations

Friday, April 19th, 2013

This week at our spring meeting, we held a panel titled A View from the Hill – Appropriations. The panelists were Joel Packer, the Executive Director of the Committee for Education Funding (CEF); Emily Bouck, a Legislative Aide for Senator Rubio (R-FL); and Kevin McDermott, the Legislative Director for Representative Tierney (D-MA-6).

The panel discussed the fiscal context in Congress, the effect of the sequestration process and how both have affected Career Technical Education (CTE). Joel expressed the view that unless Congress repeals the sequester, funding for education and CTE will be significantly reduced and will have highly negative consequences for how states deliver CTE.

Kevin agreed with Joel and went on to say that while the negative effects of sequestration are not immediately apparent, organizations such as the CEF should continue to raise awareness of the cuts. Finally, Emily acknowledged the difficult financial circumstances for CTE and said that the money should be focused on those who need it the most.

NASDCTEc is a member of the CEF and is actively engaged in the budget, appropriations and sequestration discussions.

David Beckett, Advocacy Manager

By David in Public Policy
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Revised Legislative Update: CR, Meeting with Senate HELP Committee, Houses Passes WIA Reauthorization

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

FY13 Continuing Resolution – Proposed 0.098% Across the Board Cut



The Senate is considering a continuing resolution (CR) that proposes an across the board cut of 0.098%. Because the CR is for FY13, this across the board cut would get applied to funding before and in addition to the planned 5% across the board sequestration cut.

What does the CR mean for Perkins? It seems likely that the proposed across the board cut of 0.098% will be approved and if so, it would apply to Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (Perkins) FY13 funding as well as all other federal education and workforce programs. For Perkins, FY13 is the funding states get beginning July 1, 2013. Therefore, if this CR is passed, it would mean that OVAE would have to revise and re-issue the funding tables states received on March 8, 2013.

Next Steps on the CR: The Senate will continue to debate the CR on Monday, March 18 at 2 p.m. E.T. When the CR is passed and signed by the President, which is expected to happen, NASDCTEc will provide a further update detailing out the specific impact on Perkins funding.

Meeting with Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee Republicans on Perkins

NASDCTEc made outreach to Democrat and Republican staff from the House and Senate Committees charged with taking up the reauthorization of Perkins. This week, NASDCTEc met with a representative of Senator Alexander (R-TN), Ranking Member on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, who indicated the Senator’s strong interest that Perkins be reauthorized as soon as is practicable so CTE can contribute most effectively to the economic recovery and the education of the nation. However, this staff member also noted the reality that the reauthorizations of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) technically are in the queue and should be completed first as WIA was due for reauthorization in 2003 and ESEA was due for reauthorization in 2007, whereas Perkins was due for reauthorization in 2012. NASDCTEc will continue to meet with Committee staff and share any movement in the interest or scheduling of reauthorization. In addition, these staff have been invited to be part of a panel at the NASDCTEc Spring Meeting.

House Approves Measure to Reauthorize Workforce Investment Act


On Friday, March 15, 2013, the House approved its measure to reauthorize the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), H.R.803, also known as the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills Act (SKILLS), by a vote of 215 to 202. An amendment by Representative Tierney (D-MA-6) which would have strengthened the role of community colleges in workforce investment boards was defeated 227 to 192.  A comprehensive summary of H.R. 803, detailing the impact on CTE, will be made available to NASDCTEc members next week. The passage of this bill is the first step in reauthorization; the Senate still needs to consider its reauthorization proposal for the WIA.

 

 


By David in Public Policy
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Sequestration Updates

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

New Sequester Report

 

The House Appropriations Committee Democrats recently released a new sequestration report – A Report on Consequences of Sequestration – that examines the impact of sequestration on a number of federal programs. In the education sphere, the report does not discuss Perkins or CTE, but does say that Title I Grants would be cut by more than $1 billion, impacting over 4,000 schools serving nearly 2 million disadvantaged students. In the Labor Department, cuts to Job Corps would reduce by approximately 4,300 the number of at-risk youth served.

 

Bipartisan Group of Senators Working on Deal

 

The so-called “Gang of Six,” which has been meeting to devise a bipartisan grand bargain on deficit reduction has added two more members to their ranks – Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE). It is unclear what kind of leverage the group will have during the lame duck session when Congress re-convenes to find an alternative to sequestration.

 Nancy Conneely, Director of Public Policy

 

By Nancy in Public Policy
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OMB Releases Sequestration Report

Friday, September 14th, 2012

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) this afternoon released the OMB Report Pursuant to the Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012, as required by Congress. According to OMB’s estimates, non-exempt nondefense discretionary federal programs will be cut by 8.2 percent if sequestration occurs on January 2, 2013. The report does not get down to the program level, so we do not have official numbers on the amount the Perkins could be cut, but based on our rough estimates, Perkins could be reduced by approximately $92 million. The total cut to Department of Education programs would be $4.113 billion.

OMB’s determination that the cut from sequestration would be 8.2 percent is based on the assumption that FY13 discretionary spending will be at FY12 levels. However, as we told you earlier this week, the 6 month continuing resolution increases FY13 spending 0.612 percent above FY12 levels. Therefore, the final sequestration percentage will likely be slightly different than 8.2 percent.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By Nancy in Public Policy
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