Higher Education Braces For A Government Shutdown And More Fiscal Fights
"The impending shutdown of the federal government is expected to affect higher education only modestly, at least in the short term, but the debate has already kicked off several months of unpredictable fiscal fights that threaten to further cut funding for some financial aid programs and scientific research," Inside Higher Ed reports. "The federal government will shut down on October 1 unless Congress agrees in the next five days to a stopgap spending measure to keep it open. A lapse in funding would mean that most normal day-to-day operations of the federal government would come to a halt, though it’s not clear exactly which programs relating to higher education might continue. ... Justin Draeger, the president of National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, said that previous shutdowns had minimal effects on institutions in terms of administering financial aid to students. 'If we have a brief government shutdown, I’d say the concern is pretty minimal,' he said. 'If we get into a prolonged government shutdown, the ability of schools and the department to work on complex student or borrower issues would be a problem.' But more worrisome, said Draeger and other higher education advocates, are a series of fiscal fights that will play out on Capitol Hill over the next several months. Even if the government does not shut down, Congress is likely to pass only a stopgap spending bill that will last at most several months and leaves intact the sequester cuts to campus-based financial aid programs and scientific research."
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