The big news from Washington is the release earlier this month of the president’s executive budget.
In the budget the president proposes increasing the maximum Pell Grant by $820 to $8,215. Other campus-based programs would also see big increases. For example:
- $910 million increase for the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG).
- $1.23 billion increase for the Federal Work-Study (FWS) program.
Unfortunately, the executive budget also includes a proposal for free community (two-year) college. Biden would direct $500 million for an “Accelerated Success: Free Community College Program” that would fund grants to community colleges or state systems of community colleges to offer students tuition-free programs.
The president proposes some big tax increases to pay for his priorities. For example, he would increase the corporate tax rate to 28 percent, and tax capital gains at the same rate as wage income for those with more than $1 million in income. These and other tax increases will not receive a friendly reception in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The federal budget has a long way to go between where we are now and the president signing something that everyone can agree to.