By Owen Daugherty, NASFAA Staff Reporter
The White House on Friday extended the national emergency amid the coronavirus pandemic that was first declared in March 2020. The national emergency was set to expire on March 1, 2022 without an extension.
Declaring a national emergency gives the federal government additional authorities and abilities and allows the federal government to spend additional money, among other measures.
For financial aid offices, the announcement extends the verification flexibilities, use of the return of Title IV funds (R2T4) waiver and withdrawal benefits, as well as the transferral of unused Federal Work-Study funds into the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) program through the time frames noted in a chart published by Federal Student Aid in January 2021.
“There remains a need to continue this national emergency. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to cause significant risk to the public health and safety of the nation,” President Joe Biden wrote in a letter to Congress announcing the extension. “More than 900,000 people in this nation have perished from the disease, and it is essential to continue to combat and respond to Covid-19 with the full capacity and capability of the federal government.”
While the extension time frames vary depending on the area of Title IV aid that is impacted, generally they are being extended by one year, unless the national emergency is ended before then.
Former President Donald Trump first declared a national emergency due to the pandemic on March 13, 2020, meaning next month will mark two years the country has been under a national emergency. President Biden last extended the national emergency in February 2021 until March 1, 2022.
A notice announcing the extension was published in the Federal Register Wednesday.
Publication Date: 2/23/2022