President Joe Biden on Friday formally unveiled the remainder of his spending priorities for the fiscal year 2022 budget, impacting award year 2022-23. The now fully fleshed out proposal enables congressional appropriators to begin their work in earnest and will likely spur a summer of legislative activity as the federal government sprints to meet its annual spending deadline at the end of September.
The administration released its initial discretionary budget proposal in early April, which included $102.8 billion for the Department of Education (ED), a $29.8 billion or 41% increase over the 2021 enacted level — the largest proposed increase to the department in history. Although a late spring release of the full budget proposal (rather than the customary early February) is typical during a new administration’s first appropriations cycle after assuming office, the delay in the Biden administration’s full budget was also due to the drafting and enactment of American Rescue Plan Act.
“Families have been struggling to afford college even before the pandemic ravaged our nation’s economy. President Biden’s historic investments in foundational programs like the Pell Grant will be a lifeline to millions of middle and lower income Americans,” said NASFAA President Justin Draeger. “Our attention now turns to Congress to not only enact these investments, but to also boost campus-based aid programs like Federal Work-Study and Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants to ensure no qualified student is denied access to a postsecondary degree.”