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College Opportunity and Affordability Act of 2007

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Location: Washington, DC


COLLEGE OPPORTUNITY AND AFFORDABILITY ACT OF 2007 -- (House of Representatives - February 07, 2008)

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Mr. COOPER. Mr. Chairman, this is a very simple but important amendment. It will help Historically Black Colleges and Universities, as well as Historically Black Graduate Institutions. What it would do is raise the authorization level for HBCUs, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, from the current $300 million up to $500 million, which is a $200 million increase, and a vitally necessary $200 million increase. It has been some 10 years since the Higher Ed. Act has been reauthorized. It is very important that we take into account inflation and other needs and offer to HBCUs the help that they so desperately need.

The amendment would also increase for HBGIs, Historically Black Graduate Institutions, the authorization from the current $100 million and would take it up to $125 million.

As the chairman knows, being a Blue Dog Democrat, I am firmly committed to finding spending cuts to pay for these eventual appropriations, but the key is to lift the cap to allow these vitally important national institutions to grow and prosper and continue the wonderful job they are currently doing.

Although these institutions today are only 3 percent of the total college and graduate population in this country, they graduate 25 percent of our minority lawyers and doctors and teachers and other workers, so these are vitally important institutions.

I want to thank the chairman of the full committee, Mr. Miller, for allowing this amendment. And also, in particular, our majority whip, Mr. Clyburn, for the key role he has played in making sure that Historically Black Colleges and Universities get the attention they deserve.

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