Government Relations

UM Legislative Update Newsletter

May 6, 2005

Congress passes FY06 budget

The conference report gave the following reasons for the cuts: "Although the Congress strongly supports the Federal student loan programs, it is increasingly concerned that the subsidy estimates for the Ford Direct Loan Program do not reflect the program's true cost to the Federal Government. For example, the President's 2006 budget reveals that although the program was expected to result in a net savings of $2 billion from its inception through fiscal year 2004, the actual experience is that the program resulted in a net cost to taxpayers of $3 billion over the same period. This represents a $5-billion underestimate of the program's actual cost to taxpayers over roughly 10 years. Accordingly, the Congress supports the administration's continuing efforts to direct the Department of Education to refine and improve its cost estimating techniques for this program."

The conference report also assumes funding for science programs and NIH at the President's requested levels. While the budget resolution indicates Congressional priorities and serves as a framework for the appropriations process, only the overall discretionary spending level is binding on the appropriations committees.

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