The Senate last week approved a nonbinding, $2.8 trillion budget resolution favored by Republicans for the 2007 federal fiscal year, which would provide a mostly symbolic spending blueprint for Congress.
The overall spending blueprint was approved 51-49 in the Senate late on March 16.
Earlier in the day, senators voted 73-27 to increase spending plans by $7 billion in areas that include education and health care through an amendment proposed by Sens. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., and Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, the chairman and ranking minority member, respectively, of the Appropriations Committee’s Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Subcommittee. The extra money would restore funding to education programs to fiscal year 2005 levels.
Also last week, the Senate rejected a separate amendment to the budget resolution from Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., the ranking minority member on the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, that would have increased maximum Pell Grants awards and restored a host of education programs that President Bush has proposed for elimination in his fiscal 2007 budget proposal.
A version of this article appeared in the March 22, 2006 edition of Education Week