ACE has issued a paper detailing the impact on higher education if Congress cannot agree on a plan to deal with the looming budget sequestration, the massive cuts to discretionary spending scheduled to take effect March 1.
Neither the House nor the Senate have given any hints about how they might deal with sequestration. Unless Congress intervenes, most higher education programs will face reductions of roughly 5 percent. The cuts would be especially harsh on research funding at the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.
Many Department of Education programs also would be reduced. However, federal student loans largely would be protected, and Pell Grants are actually scheduled to increase for the 2013-14 academic year.
The debt ceiling deal hammered out by the president and Congress in August 2011 included a "triggered" budget cut, or sequester, unless they found a way to cut $1.2 trillion from the budget by the end of 2012. Half of the money would be taken from domestic discretionary spending and the remaining half from the defense budget.
The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (H.R. 8) signed into law by President Obama on Jan. 2 resolved a number of key tax provisions important to higher education, but simply postponed cuts needed to forestall sequestration.
Click here to download the paper, The Likely Impact of Sequestration on Higher Education.
MONDAY BUZZ: Higher Education Under Sequestration