Washington Watch: New negotiated rulemaking tables in early 2024

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The U.S. Education Department (ED) this week announced it will convene negotiated rulemaking tables on Title IV program integrity and institutional quality issues in early 2024.

The rulemaking sessions, taking place on January 8-11, February 5-8 and March 4-7, will cover various topics, including:

  • Federal recognition of accrediting agencies and related issues
  • Institutional eligibility, including state authorization
  • The definition of distance education as it pertains to clock-hour programs and reporting for students who enroll primarily online
  • Return of Title IV funds (the funds that must be returned to the government when a student does not complete an enrollment period)
  • Cash management, to address timely student access to financial aid disbursements

A subcommittee will consider participant eligibility requirements for Federal TRIO programs.

The topics for the rulemaking session were initially announced in April 2023. AACC provided written comments to inform the issue papers to be considered by negotiators, as well as verbal comments during public hearings.

Third-party servicers was originally a proposed topic for this rulemaking session, but ED has indicated that it will revisit it for a later rulemaking and will instead issue new guidance in early 2024.

The department is currently soliciting nominations for negotiators for the key constituent groups, including public two-year colleges. Nominations are due by December 13.

This article comes from the current AACC Advocacy Quick Hits column.

About the Author

Kathryn Gimborys
Kathryn Gimborys is a government relations manager at the American Association of Community Colleges.