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As things move quickly in Washington, DC, NACUBO is your constant advocate in action. NACUBO On Your Side covers important legislative and agency activity NACUBO staff are tracking, what we’re currently advocating for, and how you can take action with us.

Here are the issues we are tracking and advocating for this week. 

Agency Action

Additional HEERF SIP Funds Available
The Department of Education has announced that new Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) grant funding is available, via an application process, for eligible institutions under the Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP). ED will consider applications from eligible institutions that did not previously receive funding under Section 18004(a)(2) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act HEERF SIP program and that are included in the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act Section 314(a)(2) SIP Allocation Table. 

ED Announces FSA Conference Dates
The Department of Education has announced that its annual Federal Student Aid conference will be virtual this year due to pandemic safety concerns. The conference will take place Nov. 30–Dec. 3, 2021; registration and other conference information will be available later this summer.


NACUBO, Associations Issue Voting Rights Statement
NACUBO has joined nearly 50 other higher education associations to issue a statement in support of voting rights and expressing strong opposition to attempts in states across the country to limit voting access. “The right to vote defines us as a nation,” the statement notes,  emphasizing the longstanding and important role colleges and universities play in “fostering informed civic engagement.” The statement urges lawmakers “to take action to ensure that civic participation in America continues to move forward, not backward,” to ensure “that the United States has the most inclusive and equitable democracy in the world.”

NACUBO Endorses Kvaal Nomination
The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee is currently considering the nomination of James Kvaal for undersecretary of education, which is the primary overseer of the Department’s postsecondary education programs. The HELP Committee began its consideration of Kvaal, who currently serves as the president of The Institute for College Access and Success and was the former deputy undersecretary of education during the Obama administration, with an April 15 hearing. NACUBO joined over 40 other higher education associations in sending a letter to HELP Committee leadership, expressing enthusiastic support for Kvaal’s confirmation.

NACUBO Supports Increased Appropriations for ENERGY STAR
NACUBO, in a letter led by the Alliance to Save Energy, wrote to Congressional appropriators to support doubling FY22 appropriations for the ENERGY STAR Program to $80 million. The letter asserts that increased funding would improve the program’s capacity to save money for individuals, businesses, and municipalities through avoided energy costs and improve its Portfolio Manager program, which benchmarks energy use.

Take Action

Tell Congress to #DoublePell
The Pell Grant is a vital tool to help make higher education affordable and accessible, but its power to help students in need is a fraction of what it once was. Join the conversation and tell Congress to #DoublePell by clicking here or texting  “College Pell” to 52886. You can do even more by sharing the campaign and using #DoublePell on social media.

Previous Edition

NACUBO On Your Side: April 6-12, 2021


Megan Schneider

Senior Director, Government Affairs


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