Budget and Appropriations

The Issue

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The federal government supports the work of colleges and universities by funding programs for student financial aid, scientific research, institutional support, and other activities. ACE monitors the annual federal budget and appropriations process from start to finish, with a particular focus on how the decisions made may impact student aid. Throughout the process, ACE Government Relations staff members meet with congressional staff, advocate for appropriate funding, analyze policy, and review and advise on legislation.

Our Work
Letter of Support for the FY 2022 Labor HHS Minibus Bill
Letter of Support for the FY 2022 Labor HHS Minibus Bill
ACE and the other undersigned organizations write in support of the Fiscal Year 2022 Labor-Health and Human Services-Education and Related Agencies appropriations bill that will be considered on the floor as part of the FY22 minibus of appropriations b...
FY 2022 Education Funding Bill Moves Forward in House
FY 2022 Education Funding Bill Moves Forward in House
The House Appropriations Committee last week approved a FY 2022 funding bill for Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, which includes substantial increases for student aid and scientific research.
Letter of Support for the FY 2022 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Bill
Letter of Support for the FY 2022 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Bill
Letter to the chair and ranking member of the House Appropriations Committee in support of the higher education provisions in the FY 2022 Labor-HHS-Education bill.
Letter on Higher Education Appropriations for FY 2022
Letter on Higher Education Appropriations for FY 2022
Letter from ACE and 48 other higher education associations to House and Senate appropriators outlining the priorities for students, institutions, and researchers as Congress works on funding bills for FY 2022.
Higher Education Community Asks Congress to Support Funding Levels Needed to Serve Students, Institutions
Higher Education Community Asks Congress to Support Funding Levels Needed to Serve Students, Institutions
ACE and nearly 50 other higher education organizations are advocating for Congress to expand federal investments in Fiscal Year 2022 to adequately support critical programs serving students, institutions, and researchers.
White House Releases Budget With Increased Funding for NIH, NSF
White House Releases Budget With Increased Funding for NIH, NSF
The Biden administration has released its full budget​ for fiscal year 2022, requesting large increases for scientific research but limited increases for student aid and other higher education programs.
Request to Congress: Double the Pell Grant
Request to Congress: Double the Pell Grant
Letter to Congress from nearly 1,200 organizations, including nearly 900 colleges and universities, requesting lawmakers to double to amount of the maximum Pell Grant award.
Student Aid Alliance FY 2022 Higher Education Appropriations Priorities
Student Aid Alliance FY 2022 Higher Education Appropriations Priorities
Letter to the chairs of the House and Senate appropriations committees outlining the higher education funding priorities for FY 2022, including doubling the maximum Pell Grant.
Letter of Appreciation to Congressional Leaders for Passing the American Rescue Plan
Letter of Appreciation to Congressional Leaders for Passing the American Rescue Plan
Letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) for including support for postsecondary students and institutions in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (H.R. 1319).
Nearly $40 Billion in Relief for Higher Education in Sight as Congress Nears Completion on COVID-19 Bill
Nearly $40 Billion in Relief for Higher Education in Sight as Congress Nears Completion on COVID-19 Bill
​Nearly $40 billion in new relief funds for students and colleges and universities is a step closer to becoming reality, after the Senate voted 50-49 on Saturday to approve President Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus package.
Letter to Senate Leadership in Support of the Reconciliation Package
Letter to Senate Leadership in Support of the Reconciliation Package
We are particularly appreciative that nearly $40 billion is included in the legislation for students and institutions. While this amount falls short of our most recent estimate of at least $97 billion in need, it represents the largest federal effort s...
Letter to House Leaders in Support of Funding for Students and Institutions in Budget Reconciliation Bill
Letter to House Leaders in Support of Funding for Students and Institutions in Budget Reconciliation Bill
As the House of Representatives moves to consider the reconciliation package on the floor, ACE and over 50 organizations write on behalf of U.S. colleges and universities to express strong support for the measure.
Letter to the House Committee on Education and Labor on Emergency Relief in Budget Reconciliation
Letter to the House Committee on Education and Labor on Emergency Relief in Budget Reconciliation
ACE and other higher education associations write to support emergency relief for higher education students and institutions as committee members create the FY21 budget resolution’s reconciliation instructions.
Request for Supplemental Funding for Federal Science Agencies During COVID-19
Request for Supplemental Funding for Federal Science Agencies During COVID-19
Higher education associations are urging Congress to provide $26 billion in supplemental funding for federal science agencies that provide critical support for the nation’s scientists and engineers and research operations.
 Letter to Congress About the Continuing Needs of Students and Institutions During the Pandemic
Letter to Congress About the Continuing Needs of Students and Institutions During the Pandemic
The COVID-19 relief bill Congress approved in December provided just under $23 billion for postsecondary students and institutions. While this will deliver some help, at least $97 billion in critical needs remains unaddressed.
Higher Education Receives More Than $20 Billion in COVID-19 Relief Funding
Higher Education Receives More Than $20 Billion in COVID-19 Relief Funding
Congressional leaders Sunday night reached an agreement on a $900 billion COVID-19 relief bill, including a $22.7 billion higher education emergency fund, and the House and Senate this afternoon were poised to vote on a final measure.
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on COVID-19 Relief Package Higher Education Funding
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on COVID-19 Relief Package Higher Education Funding
The money provided in this bill will provide some limited relief, which is welcome news to struggling students and institutions. But it is not going to be nearly enough in the long run or even the medium term.
Letter to Congressional Leaders on COVID-19 Relief for Higher Education
Letter to Congressional Leaders on COVID-19 Relief for Higher Education
The CARES Act was vital to keeping students enrolled and colleges running in the spring. But the scope of the financial duress has grown, and coleges and universities now have at least $120 billion in new expenses and lost revenue.
Request to Congress for Emergency Funding for Higher Education
Request to Congress for Emergency Funding for Higher Education
Letter to congressional leaders requesting at least $120 billion in new federal support for students and colleges and universities in the next COVID-19 supplemental spending bill.
As Talks on COVID-19 Emergency Bill Falter, Associations Write to Congress on the Needs of Students and Institutions
As Talks on COVID-19 Emergency Bill Falter, Associations Write to Congress on the Needs of Students and Institutions
As negotiations continue on the next COVID-19 relief bill, ACE and other associations made recommendations on the best path forward for needed assistance to students and institutions.
Letter to Congress on Higher Education Needs in the Fifth COVID-19 Emergency Spending Bill
Letter to Congress on Higher Education Needs in the Fifth COVID-19 Emergency Spending Bill
Letter to House and Senate leaders expressing the views of colleges and universities on what student and institutional aid provisions should be included in the fifth COVID-19 spending bill.
Senate Republicans Introduce COVID-19 Spending Bill With $29 Billion for Higher Education
Senate Republicans Introduce COVID-19 Spending Bill With $29 Billion for Higher Education
Senate Republicans introduced their version of the fifth COVID-19 supplemental spending bill late Monday, proposing about $29 billion in emergency aid for students and colleges and universities among the provisions.
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on Senate Republican COVID-19 Supplemental Bill
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on Senate Republican COVID-19 Supplemental Bill
The amount of higher education aid contained in this legislation is inadequate to address the extensive needs of the millions of students and families, but like the House legislation, it is a first step in the right direction.
Higher Education Priorities for the Fifth Supplemental Spending Bill
Higher Education Priorities for the Fifth Supplemental Spending Bill
Request from ACE and 83 other higher education associations requesting $46.6 billion in support for students and institutions in the fifth COVID-19 spending bill.
Letter to the House on the HEROES Act
Letter to the House on the HEROES Act
Letter to House leadership in support of the Health, Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act.
Summary of the HEROES Act
Summary of the HEROES Act
Summary of the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, the House bill that would be the fifth COVID-19 emergency funding measure.
Higher Education Community Requests $46.6 Billion for Students and Institutions in Fourth Supplemental Package, Proposes Tax Changes
Higher Education Community Requests $46.6 Billion for Students and Institutions in Fourth Supplemental Package, Proposes Tax Changes
ACE and other higher education organizations are requesting that Congress include $46.6 billion in emergency aid for students and institutions in the next COVID-19 supplemental package to at least partially mitigate the damage done by this pandemic.
Letter to House Leadership Requesting Additional Support During the Pandemic
Letter to House Leadership Requesting Additional Support During the Pandemic
Letter to House leadership requesting additional assistance for the higher education community during the COVID-19 pandemic as Congress prepares the next stimulus bill.
Letter to Senate Leadership Requesting Additional Support During the Pandemic
Letter to Senate Leadership Requesting Additional Support During the Pandemic
Letter to Senate leadership requesting additional assistance for the higher education community during the COVID-19 pandemic as Congress prepares the next stimulus bill.
CARES Act Higher Education Relief Fund
CARES Act Higher Education Relief Fund
A simulated distribution of the amounts to each college and university in the United States provided under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act, the emergency coronavirus relief spending bill signed into law on March 28, 2020.
Coronavirus Stimulus Bill Allocates $14 Billion to Higher Education
Coronavirus Stimulus Bill Allocates $14 Billion to Higher Education
ACE President Ted Mitchell called the higher education provisions in the plan, which total approximately $14 billion, “woefully inadequate.”
Summary of the Higher Education Provisions in the CARES Act
Summary of the Higher Education Provisions in the CARES Act
Summary of the higher education provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, which provides over $2 trillion in emergency relief to address the economic downturn resulting from the pandemic.
ACE President Ted Mitchell on Senate Stimulus Bill’s Impact on Students and Institutions
ACE President Ted Mitchell on Senate Stimulus Bill’s Impact on Students and Institutions
While this legislation is an improvement from where the Senate started, the amount of money it provides to students and higher education institutions remains woefully inadequate.
Senate Likely to Vote on Stimulus Package Later Today; Support for Students and Institutions Still Being Negotiated
Senate Likely to Vote on Stimulus Package Later Today; Support for Students and Institutions Still Being Negotiated
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said last night that they were nearing a deal on a $2 trillion economic aid package to help Americans, U.S. businesses, and specific groups survive the coronavirus pandemic.
ACE, Other Higher Ed Groups Ask Congress to Support Students and Institutions in Wake of COVID-19 Pandemic
ACE, Other Higher Ed Groups Ask Congress to Support Students and Institutions in Wake of COVID-19 Pandemic
It is vital for higher education leaders to contact their members of Congress to request assistance.
Letter to Senate on Higher Education Priorities in Supplemental Spending Bill
Letter to Senate on Higher Education Priorities in Supplemental Spending Bill
Letter to Sens. Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer outlining how the federal government can assist students, educators, and institutions in recovering from the impact of COVID-19.
Letter to House on Higher Education Priorities in Supplemental Spending Bill
Letter to House on Higher Education Priorities in Supplemental Spending Bill
Letter to Reps. Nancy Pelosi and Kevin McCarthy outlining how the federal government can assist students, educators, and institutions in recovering from the impact of COVID-19.
Letter to Congress in Support of Research During COVID-19 Pandemic
Letter to Congress in Support of Research During COVID-19 Pandemic
Letter from ACE, AAU, APLU, and AAMC outlining a four-point strategy to help U.S. universities continue leading in the battle against COVID-19 and ensure that research in other areas can continue.
Memo to Congress: Supporting Higher Education During the Pandemic
Memo to Congress: Supporting Higher Education During the Pandemic
Recommendations from the higher education community for what to include in the coronavirus emergency stimulus bill Congress is drafting to support college students and institutions.
House, Senate Introduce Financial Aid Legislation for Coronavirus Outbreak
House, Senate Introduce Financial Aid Legislation for Coronavirus Outbreak
Legislation introduced in both the House and Senate last week would provide more than $3 billion in COVID-19 support funding for higher education.
Latest White House Budget Once Again Slashes Student Aid, Research Funding
Latest White House Budget Once Again Slashes Student Aid, Research Funding
President Trump has called for $5.6 billion in cuts to the Department of Education’s budget for FY 2021, a move that would weaken critical higher education programs that support low- and middle-income students and families.
Congress Approves Final FY 2020 Spending Package
Congress Approves Final FY 2020 Spending Package
Congress this week approved a final FY 2020 $1.4 trillion spending package, several months after the start of the fiscal year, that includes a strong increase for student financial aid and a robust hike in spending on science and medical research.
Congress Approves FUTURE Act
Congress Approves FUTURE Act
Congress gave final approval Dec. 10 to the FUTURE Act, a bill that will restore and make permanent a $255 million per year funding stream for minority serving institutions.
Letter to the House in Support of the FUTURE Act
Letter to the House in Support of the FUTURE Act
Letter to House leaders in support of the Senate verison of the FUTURE Act, which adds FAFSA simplification and other provisions to the restoration of the funding stream for minority serving institutions.
Senate Approves Compromise Measure to Extend MSI Funding, Simplify FAFSA
Senate Approves Compromise Measure to Extend MSI Funding, Simplify FAFSA
The Senate has approved an amendment to the FUTURE Act that would permanently restore $255 million in funding for minority serving institutions and streamline the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Letter to Congress Requesting Support for Student Aid in FY 2020 Spending Bill
Letter to Congress Requesting Support for Student Aid in FY 2020 Spending Bill
Letter from the Student Aid Alliance to Congressional appropriations leaders requesting that federal student aid programs are prioritized as they resolve the FY 2020 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill.
Letter to Senate on Amendment to the FUTURE Act
Letter to Senate on Amendment to the FUTURE Act
Letter sent to Sens. Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer expressing strong support for an amendment to the House-passed FUTURE Act that streamlines FAFSA and the application for income-based stident loan repayment.
Student Aid Alliance Letter on Funding Student Aid Programs in FY 2020
Student Aid Alliance Letter on Funding Student Aid Programs in FY 2020
Letter from the Student Aid Alliance to the leaders of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, asking that budget caps for FY 2020 and FY 2021 be increased to avoid cuts to nondefense discretionary spending.
ACE, Higher Education Groups Call on House to Extend Funding for STEM Programs at HBCUs, Other MSIs
ACE, Higher Education Groups Call on House to Extend Funding for STEM Programs at HBCUs, Other MSIs
ACE and 43 other higher education groups sent a letter to House leaders in support of a measure to extend funding for STEM programs at colleges and universities serving predominantly minority student populations.
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on the Importance of Passing the FUTURE Act
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on the Importance of Passing the FUTURE Act
It is vital for members of the House of Representatives to swiftly approve the Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act.
ACE Calls on Alaska Legislature to Override Higher Education Cuts
ACE Calls on Alaska Legislature to Override Higher Education Cuts
ACE President Ted Mitchell has urged the Alaska State Legislature to override the governor’s budget veto and change course on the proposed draconian cut to the state’s public higher education system.
Senate Defense Bill Targets Security and Foreign Influence at Colleges and Universities
Senate Defense Bill Targets Security and Foreign Influence at Colleges and Universities
Congressional members from both parties have expressed heightened concern in recent months over security and foreign influence at higher education institutions, specifically around China.
House Approves Spending Package That Includes Substantial Increases for Student Aid, Research
House Approves Spending Package That Includes Substantial Increases for Student Aid, Research
The House has passed a $982.8 billion minibus spending package that appropriates funding for four separate FY 2020 spending bills, including the one for Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and Education.
Letter to House Leaders in Support of FY 2020 Minibus Appropriations Bill
Letter to House Leaders in Support of FY 2020 Minibus Appropriations Bill
Letter from ACE President Ted Mitchell offering strong support for the minibus bill that funds Labor-HHS-Education for FY 2020.
House Spending Bill Boosts Funding for Federal Student Aid Research
House Spending Bill Boosts Funding for Federal Student Aid Research
Funding levels match requests made by the higher education community.
Student Aid Alliance Letter on Funding Student Aid Programs in FY 2020
Student Aid Alliance Letter on Funding Student Aid Programs in FY 2020
Letter from the Student Aid Alliance to the leaders of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, asking that budget caps for FY 2020 and FY 2021 be increased to avoid cuts to nondefense discretionary spending.
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on President Trump’s Proposed FY 2020 Budget
Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on President Trump’s Proposed FY 2020 Budget
ACE President Ted Mitchell released a statement on the White House's proposed FY 2020 budget urging Congress to reject cuts and continue trend of increasing funding for student aid and biomedical research.
White House Proposes Significant Cuts to Education Programs for FY 2020
White House Proposes Significant Cuts to Education Programs for FY 2020
President Trump today delivered his first budget request under a divided government, and the proposed cuts to higher education are expected to face strong resistance in Congress.
As Government Shutdown Continues Broad Outline of Higher Education Policy Agenda for 2019 Emerges
As Government Shutdown Continues Broad Outline of Higher Education Policy Agenda for 2019 Emerges
If and when the impasse comes to an end, a full agenda for higher education awaits both Congress and the administration.