02.26.15

Burr Unveils Legislation To Ease Red Tape On Colleges

WASHINGTON, D.C. -U.S. Senator Richard Burr (R-N.C.) late yesterday introduced his"Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act", a bill that eases the recent regulations placed on colleges and universities over the last six years. Traditionally, states and independent accrediting bodies handled these issues but the recent wave of new regulations have imposed federal standards that unnecessarily restrict choice and increase costs. This month, an independent report found that the cost of Washington's overreach in higher education was high, costing families more every year to educate their children. 

"Our colleges and universities are struggling under new regulations imposed by this administration," said Senator Burr. "Bureaucrats at the Department of Education have become addicted to micromanaging nearly every aspect of campus life, wading into issues Congress never authorized and most commonsense Americans don't support.  Worse, these reporting requirements ultimately are passed down to students and parents in the form of higher tuition, as colleges and universities become compliance-driven organizations, rather than institutions of learning. My legislation rolls back much of this burdensome red tape."

The legislation has the support of Sens. Grassley, Isakson, Tillis, Cotton, Hatch, Alexander, Roberts, Fischer, Flake, Scott, Cassidy, Portman, Cornyn, Rubio, Enzi and Murkowski.

The "Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act" has the support of at least 25 advocacy organizations.   Recently, the American Council on Education (ACE) released the"Recalibrating Regulation of Colleges and Universities" report detailing the extent of regulatory burden Washington places on colleges and universities.  This report, which included the input of nearly every sector of higher education, was requested by Chairman Alexander and Senators Mikulski, Burr, and Bennet a little over a year ago.  The report makes clear the extent of Washington's overreach on campuses and was used to inform the "Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act".