Penn Hill Group’s Washington Wrap Up – September 11, 2017

A quick look back at the news from last week. Compiled by Penn Hill Group. 



President Trump and Democratic Congressional leaders announced their support for attaching an extension of the Federal government’s borrowing authority and a continuing resolution for fiscal year (FY) 2018 funding through December 2017 to legislation providing additional spending for hurricane relief efforts. The House and Senate passed legislation embodying this deal.

The House began consideration of the Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2018 (H.R. 3354), which includes 8 of the 12 appropriations bills not yet passed by the House, including the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS) appropriations bill. Click here to view the amendments made in order. The House did not complete consideration of this bill due to the impending landfall of Hurricane Irma and is expected to resume consideration this week.

A spokesperson for House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) announced her intent to introduce and move a bill that would reauthorize the Higher Education Act later this year.

Chairwoman Foxx released a statement supporting the U.S. Department of Education’s (ED) decision to end its information sharing agreements with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

House Education and the Workforce Committee Ranking Member Bobby Scott (D-VA) released a statement opposing ED Secretary Betsy DeVos’ decision to rewrite ED’s Title IX policy.

The House Judiciary Committee passed the ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017 (H.R.620) 15—9, on a party line vote. This bill would bar civil actions for certain violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).


The Senate FY2018 LHHS appropriations bill passed the LHHS Subcommittee by voice vote and the full Appropriations Committee 29—2.

Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) released statements opposing ED Secretary DeVos’ decision to rewrite ED’s Title IX policy and suggesting steps DeVos should take to protect survivors of campus sexual assault.


President Trump announced that his Administration will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, with a six-month delay to provide Congress with time to develop and pass a permanent legislative solution for DACA participants. After the Administration’s official announcement, President Trump stated that he would revisit DACA if Congress failed to legislate on the issue. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security released additional information on the phasing out of DACA. 15 States and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit in Federal court asking a judge to strike down as unconstitutional the president’s action involving DACA.

The White House announced that it would postpone its annual Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) conference following multiple calls from organizations and congressional offices to postpone it. The White House also announced it would meet with a small number of HBCU leaders and students on strategic issues.

ED ended two agreements with CFPB to share information in connection with oversight of Federal student loans, asserting that CFPB failed to direct complaints related to Title IV Federal student loans to ED. CFPB Director Richard Cordray sent a letter to ED discussing the agreements.

ED Secretary DeVos discussed ED’s Title IX policy at George Mason University and announced that ED will rewrite what standards ED will require through a regulatory process that would require public input.

ED approved Arizona and North Dakota’s State plans under the Every Student Succeeds Act.

ED Secretary DeVos released a statement commending Illinois for adopting a tax credit scholarship program.

ED Secretary DeVos and President Trump visited with victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana.