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As things move quickly in Washington, DC, NACUBO is your constant advocate in action. NACUBO On Your Side covers important legislative and agency activity NACUBO staff are tracking, what we’re currently advocating for, and how you can take action with us.

Here are the issues we are tracking and advocating for this week.

Agency Action

ED Secretary DeVos Resigns
Citing the impact of President Donald Trump’s rhetoric on fomenting violent insurrection at the Capitol, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos resigned her post last week, becoming the second Cabinet member to do so. In her resignation letter, DeVos praised the Department’s work and achievements under her leadership. By resigning, she will avoid involvement should Cabinet Secretaries attempt to remove Trump from office by invoking the 25th Amendment.

Limited Additional HEERF Aid Available
Most of the leftover funds from the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund are now being directed toward the next round of large allocations for schools in the latest COVID-19 relief bill. However, ED will be able to use some remaining monies to make additional HEERF grants for the HEERF Section 18004(a)(2) and (a)(3) programs. Interested applicants that meet one of the five conditions described in ED’s Reopening Notice and that ED has verified to previously have attempted to apply through grants.gov for one of these HEERF grant opportunities should submit their revised or corrected applications no later than January 11. 

DHS Issues H-1B Visa Final Rule
Despite a recent series of successful legal challenges to proposed H-1B visa changes made by the Departments of Labor (DOL) and Homeland Security (DHS), DHS has now finalized its components of the new rule that eliminate the existing visa lottery in favor of a system that prioritizes applicants earning the highest wages. Although many organizations, including NACUBO, submitted comments with concerns to DHS when the rule changes were initially proposed, the agency declined to change the rule from its initial form. The rule is not set to take effect until March, so it’s possible the incoming Biden administration may temporarily halt and ultimately revoke the rule.

Other Updates

March Madness Moves to Indiana
Due to ongoing concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has announced that the entirety of the 2021 men’s basketball championship tournament will take place in Indiana, with the majority of the 67 games in Indianapolis. While strict distancing and testing measures will be in place to protect the health of student athletes and coaching staff, the NCAA has not yet decided if fans will be permitted to attend the games.

SUNY Launches Free Higher Education Compliance Training Resource
The State University of New York System (SUNY) is launching a free training series in January designed to help colleges and universities to quickly, efficiently, and accurately train responsible campus authorities on the Clery Act, Title IX, and other areas of campus policy. The series, known as RAPID (Responsible Authority Proficiency in Incident Disclosure) training, can be downloaded and entirely personalized by each institution. Training materials can be hosted and distributed on any learning management system and feature a user guide to explain how institutions can replace specific content with their own generated content, logos, and information. Institutions can pre-register now to be notified as soon as training materials are released.

Take Action

Final Election Resource Available
Following the conclusion of runoff elections for Georgia’s two senate seats, NACUBO has posted an updated slide deck providing information on the 2020 elections. The latest version includes biographies of Senators-Elect Jon Ossof (D-GA) and Raphael Warnock (D-GA) along with high-level information about other results. 

Previous Edition

NACUBO On Your Side: December 15-21, 2020

Contact

Megan Schneider

Senior Director, Government Affairs

202.861.2547


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