Coronavirus Relief Advocacy
NACUBO is your advocate in action and, together with other national higher education associations, is working diligently to ensure students and institutions of higher education continue to be considered in federal coronavirus relief efforts. For additional information, contact the staff listed on this page or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find NACUBO's latest COVID-19 guidance and resources here. Find a full list of advocacy requests and letters to Congress and the Administration here.
NACUBO’s policy team has also put together an advocacy resource for members, examining the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on higher education. This slide deck provides valuable data on student access to online learning, enrollment and retention data throughout the pandemic, and much more.
Advocacy for Institutions
Additional Funding and Support
Financial Support. NACUBO urged Congress early on to provide financial support for colleges and universities in the CARES Act as campuses faced sizable expenses due to campus closures and the transition to online education. NACUBO has continuously joined efforts with the broader higher education association community asking Congress to provide financial support in future legislation as institutions absorb significant costs and revenue losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This has resulted in sizeable additional allocation for institutions in the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act and the American Rescue Plan Act.
Campus Reopening Support. NACUBO joined efforts calling on Congress to provide support to campuses as they reopen, including financial support for new healthy and safety measures, and temporary limited liability protections.
Tax and Employer Operations
CARES Act Loan Programs. NACUBO has worked with other higher education associations to call for, and recommend, numerous changes and expansions to both the Paycheck Protection Program and Main Street Loan Program, first created by the CARES Act, to better support college and university employers. As a result of these advocacy efforts, the Small Business Administration issued guidance allowing colleges and universities to exclude Federal Work-Study (FWS) students when determining the number of employees for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan eligibility. Similarly, the Federal Reserve responded to advocacy efforts by announcing that it will expand Main Street Loan Program eligibility to nonprofit entities. NACUBO continues to work with other higher education associations, the Small Business Administration, and the Federal Reserve to ensure the structure of these programs best meet the needs of college and university employers.
FFCRA Employer Tax Credits. NACUBO led efforts asking Congress to expand the paid sick and family leave tax credits passed in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to public college and university employers, and this provision was ultimately included in subsequent legislation.
Advocacy for Students
NACUBO has endorsed several pieces of legislation to enhance broadband access and connectivity for students as they transition to online higher education. NACUBO has continuously called on Congressional leadership to bolster this much needed support, both in conjunction with others in the higher education community and with external partners outside of higher education.
International Student Issues
Taxability of Nonresident Students. The Department of the Treasury and the IRS have announced tax relief, for which NACUBO has advocated, for nonresident individuals including international students and scholars who are in the U.S. indefinitely as a result of COVID-19 travel disruptions. These international students and scholars may otherwise have been inadvertently considered U.S. residents for tax purposes due to their longer-than-expected stay in the United States.
Protection of International Student Visas. NACUBO has joined with other higher education associations in repeatedly calling for the protection of international student visas and the issuance of further guidance for international students as campuses move to reopen in some capacity in fall 2021.
Additional Student Issues
Taxability of HEERF Grant Aid. As a result of NACUBO's advocacy, the IRS announced that emergency grants provided to students from Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund grant program allocations are not to be included in a student’s gross income and thus are not taxable. The IRS guidance is entirely in line with recommendations made by NACUBO.
Additional Financial Support. NACUBO has worked with other higher education associations to call on Congress to pass additional financial relief for student loan borrowers, and to provide further funds for additional aid to students.
Student Veteran Support. NACUBO worked with other higher education associations to support several pieces of legislation that protected the Post-9/11 GI Bill housing and education benefits of student veterans as they transitioned to online education or paused their studies in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Advocacy for the Nonprofit Sector
Temporary above the line charitable deduction. Among many provisions contained within the CARES Act was the temporary addition of a $300 above the line charitable deduction. NACUBO, both as a member of the Charitable Giving Coalition and the higher education community, advocated for this temporary deduction and continues to advocate for an effort to increase the limit to up to one-third of the standard deduction ($4,000 for individuals and $8,000 for married couples). Read more on the pandemic's impact on charitable giving here.
Updates from NACUBO
Telephone Town Halls. NACUBO experts have been providing the latest updates from Washington throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Find more information about Telephone Town Halls and listen to recordings of past calls here.
Coronavirus Resources for Colleges. NACUBO has the latest guidance and resources from Washington to help your campus respond to the coronavirus crisis. Find curated pages with explanations and links to federal guidance, business continuity resources, and more here.
- What does the recent market downturn mean for college endowments?
- A number of useful advocacy tools can be found here, including video explanations about advanced refunding and bank qualified borrowing for small borrowers.
- You can use this search function on the United States House of Representatives' website to identify your member of Congress. You can find your United States Senators here.