Bill Would Bar States from Suspending Licenses Over Unpaid Student Loans

DC Shuttle …

Senators Introduce Bill to Protect Drivers Licenses in Student Loan Default. U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced a bill, the Protecting JOBs Act, that would prevent states from suspending residents’ driver’s and professional licenses over unpaid federal student loans, the Boston Globe reports. Warren provided a summary of the legislation.

Appropriators Pass Education Funding Bill. The House Appropriations Committee introduced a $177.1 billion measure to fund the departments of Health and Human Services, Education, and Labor, which the subcommittee then held a markup of and approved. The bill would cut or eliminate several programs but funds a 3.4% boost to biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health. The bill would give the Education Department a $43 million boost, funding it at $71 billion in fiscal 2019, which begins Oct. 1. The full committee has scheduled a markup next week for the $177.1 billion measure. The legislation would provide a $119 million increase for career and technical education but would keep the maximum Pell Grant flat at $6,095 in fiscal 2019. It would also increase support for the TRIO and GEAR UP programs by $60 million and $10 million, respectively.

Senate Committee Approves Funds for School Safety. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved $100 million for the STOP School Violence Act, which was included in the fiscal 2018 omnibus (H.R. 1625). Of the funds administered by the Justice Department, $75 million would go to evidence-based school safety programs and $25 million to security measures related to school safety. The House Appropriations Committee approved the program funds last month at the same level.

Senate to Consider Perkins CTE Update. The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee scheduled an executive session to mark up a bill reauthorizing the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. The law hasn’t been updated since 2006. The legislation passed the House last year. Ivanka Trump met with senators last week to urge them to pass a bill. Senators Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Bob Casey (D-PA) have been leading negotiations over reauthorizing the law. At the same time, the committee will consider the nomination of Scott Stump for the Education Department’s top career and technical education office. Scott previously worked as assistant provost for career and technical education at the Colorado Community College System. His nomination comes after the White House last year yanked the nomination of Michigan state Rep. Tim Kelly, who called for banning all Muslims from air travel.

House Hearing on Charter Schools. The House Committee on Education and the Workforce held a hearing on charter schools, titled “The Power of Charter Schools: Promoting Opportunity for America’s Students.” Chair Virginia Foxx (R-NC) said the schools “have proven an immensely popular option.”

Report on Student Loan Repayment. A new American Enterprise Institute report looks at graduate schools with the lowest rates of student loan repayment.

We publish the DC Shuttle each week featuring higher ed news from Washington collected by the New England Council, of which NEBHE is a member. This edition is drawn from the Higher Education Update in the Council’s Weekly Washington Report of June 18, 2018. For more information, please visit:




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