November 20, 2017
The U.S. House of Representatives, on a largely party-line vote on Thursday, passed an overhaul of the tax code that could have far-reaching consequences for higher education — and especially for graduate students who work as teaching or research assistants. The Republican-sponsored bill contains a provision that would tax tuition waivers provided to employees of colleges, including those graduate students. The waivers serve as a significant benefit to student workers who otherwise would not be able to afford to pay tuition on what is often meager pay from their institutions.
November 16, 2017
As both houses of Congress charge forward with wide-ranging tax overhaul plans, higher education leaders have chosen to attack specific provisions they feel would hurt colleges and students instead of mounting a more ambitious assault against Republicans’ broader goals. The strategy is in some ways ironic. Leaders who often talk about the complexity of the postsecondary education system and its pivotal role in fostering economic growth have chosen to focus on their narrow corner of the tax code instead of taking a more holistic view of the currently tangled web of federal rates, incentives and carve outs.
November 16, 2017
The proposed federal tax overhaul could affect large university endowments and graduate student tuition costs, leaving higher education groups worried about the potential impact on student costs and university finances. The measures in both houses of Congress would tax large private university endowments, including those of Rice University and Trinity University in San Antonio. The House plan would also impose a tax on student tuition waivers, potentially burdening graduate students with high fees. The Senate plan does not include those provisions.
November 14, 2017
Proposed federal tax changes would levy new taxes on the endowments of private universities like Duke, reduce the deductibility of student-loan interest, count grad student cost breaks as income, change the tax rules for charitable giving and even tinker with the ones that govern debt financing. Buried in the details of a tax proposal Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives are pushing is a provision that would fundamentally change the economics behind a person’s decision on whether or not to pursue a master’s degree or doctorate.
November 8, 2017
Buried in the details of the 400-page tax-reform plan unveiled on Thursday by House Republicans is a proposal that, if enacted, would leave many graduate students wondering if they could afford to continue their studies. Under current law, college employees are allowed to get a break on tuition without counting that break as taxable income. Graduate students who work as research or teaching assistants are among the chief beneficiaries of that policy.
November 8, 2017
Missouri’s ability to pay its bills could be dependent on what Congress includes in a tax cut plan. One proposed change would almost double the standard deduction, used by 71 percent of Missouri taxpayers on their federal and state returns. Missourians used it to reduce taxable income by $17.1 billion in 2015 and the deduction is slated to grow by 90 percent under the plan proposed last week. “It is obvious that this is a ginormous revenue loser for the state,” said Tom Kruckmeyer, chief economist for the Missouri Budget Project.
November 3, 2017
Republicans in Congress released their proposed overhaul of the nation’s tax laws on Thursday, including several measures that would place new tax burdens on colleges and students — and, critics said, could undermine charitable giving to higher education. The bill was met with immediate opposition from a number of higher-education groups, which argued that the measure would rob institutions of vital dollars and increase the price of college for debt-laden students and already-strapped families.
August 28, 2017
A year from now, some students attending the University of Missouri in Columbia — who also are Missouri residents — may be getting some of their financial aid through either the Missouri Land Grant or the Missouri Land Grant Honors programs. The programs are intended for low-income families whose students already qualify for federal Pell grants, to fill the gap between the total cost of tuition and fees and other financial aid the students also will receive.
August 25, 2017
In the aftermath of the Great Recession, a dramatic drop in state tax revenue led to significant reductions in funding for public higher education institutions, and while there has been some reinvestment by states in the past several years, on the whole states are spending approximately $9 billion less today than in 2008 on higher ed, according to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Michael Mitchell, a senior policy analyst with the center who helped pen the report, said state reinvestment was tepid but present.
June 27, 2017
Remarks by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos this week focused attention on an idea that would fundamentally change higher ed: repealing its foundational piece of legislation — the Higher Education Act of 1965 — and replacing it with a new law. Ms. DeVos first suggested in May that the law should be scrapped. And earlier this week, she told the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, "Adding to a half-century patchwork will not lead to meaningful reform. Real change is needed."