A quick look back at the news from last week. Compiled by Penn Hill Group.
President Trump signed the fiscal year (FY) 2017 Omnibus Appropriations bill, which the House and Senate passed by a vote of 309-118 and 79-18, respectively. The bill funds the U.S. Department of Education (ED) at $68.24 billion in discretionary funding, approximately $60 million less than the FY2016 level.
House Education and the Workforce Committee Ranking Member Bobby Scott (D-VA) released a statement supporting the FY17 Omnibus Appropriations bill and announcing his priorities moving forward.
The House passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA), legislation repealing and replacing major portions of the Affordable Care Act, by a vote of 217-213.
House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) released a statement in support of the House’s passage of the AHCA.
Ranking Member Scott issued a statement in opposition to the AHCA.
Ranking Member Scott and House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI) released a statement in opposition to President Trump’s executive order (EO) “Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty.”
Members of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce introduced the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, bipartisan legislation to strengthen and improve career and technical education.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing on data breaches connected to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the Internal Revenue Service Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT). Chairwoman Foxx released a statement on the hearing.
Chairman Alexander and Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) released a statement supporting the restoration of Summer Pell Grant awards, which is included in the FY17 Omnibus Appropriations bill.
Senate Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-VT) issued a statement supporting the FY17 Omnibus Appropriations bill.
Chairman Alexander and HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) sent a letter to ED Secretary Betsy DeVos requesting regular briefings from ED on the outage of the IRS DRT and that ED put forth an action plan that addresses security concerns and resources being used to expedite getting the tool back online, among others.
Ranking Member Murray released a statement in opposition to President Trump’s executive order (EO) “Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty.”
Enterprise Recovery Systems and Pioneer Credit Recovery, private collection agencies, accepted ED’s offer of new contracts to collect past-due student loans. However, the agreements have not been finalized because the companies are in the process of taking legal action against ED after the Obama Administration cancelled their contracts in 2015.
Alexander Acosta was sworn in as the 27th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor.
President Trump signed an EO “Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty,” which deals with protections for religious freedom.
President Trump and ED Secretary DeVos held an event at the White House to promote school choice.
ED Secretary DeVos convened a roundtable with parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.