ACCT Statement Supporting the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021

December 22, 2020

Yesterday, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which contains $900 billion in COVID-19 relief funding and $1.4 trillion in FY2021 funding. The legislation includes $22.7 billion in pandemic-related aid for institutions of higher education, which will be allocated through a formula that accounts for an institution’s total number of students (headcount) and relative share of full-time equivalent (FTE) students. The measure also reinstates Pell Grant eligibility for incarcerated individuals and supports low-income students through simplification of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and expansion of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

ACCT President and CEO J. Noah Brown offered the following statement on the passage of the legislation:

“Despite facing financial and logistical hardships during these trying times, community college leaders have remained steadfast in their dedication to serving students. ACCT appreciates the advocacy of our member trustees and other community college leaders who have used their voices to call for support of their students' needs. We are grateful that the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 includes crucial emergency aid for colleges and that these funds will be distributed in a way that accounts for the needs of both full and part-time students.

“Additionally, the Association of Community College Trustees enthusiastically supports the reinstatement for Pell Grant eligibility to incarcerated students. This provision, as well as the FAFSA simplification and SNAP expansion provisions included in the legislation, will help make college more affordable and accessible for millions of students.”

About ACCT

The Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) is a non-profit educational organization of governing boards, representing more than 6,500 elected and appointed trustees who govern over 1,200 community, technical, and junior colleges in the United States and beyond.