Defunded; Departing

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The Corporation for National and Community Service has suspended the funding of a national-service grantee that it says violated regulations against advocacy.

In a July 19 letter to Congress, Eli J. Segal, the corporation's chief executive officer, said the agency will no longer fund the ACORN Housing Corporation because it is too closely linked to its parent organization, the low-income advocacy group known as the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, or ACORN.

ACORN invited scrutiny when members disrupted a March appearance of Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., to protest House Republicans' plan to replace school-nutrition programs with a block grant.

At the time, Administration officials said the ACORN Housing Corporation, which had received an AmeriCorps national-service grant of $995,000, was not part of the protest or any other advocacy activities initiated by its parent group.

But in his letter last month, Mr. Segal noted that although the corporation's inspector general "has found no evidence of AmeriCorps members' participation in the demonstration, she has found a pattern of conduct on the part of A.H.C. to assist ACORN--conduct that violates our regulations."

Mr. Segal said the corporation will seek reimbursement of funds it has advanced the housing group.

Eugene E. Garcia, the director of the Education Department's office of bilingual education and minority-languages affairs, is preparing to leave the post to return to academia as the dean of the graduate school of education of the University of California at Berkeley.

"I'm very close to accepting the offer," Mr. Garcia said in an interview last week. "I'm an academic. I'm going back to where I belong."

When he joined the Clinton Administration in the fall of 1993, Mr. Garcia had been the dean of the division of social sciences and a professor of education and psychology at U.C.-Santa Cruz.

"It's been a very frustrating time for bilingual education in general," Mr. Garcia said, citing moves in the Republican-controlled Congress to slash appropriations for bilingual-education programs.

Mr. Garcia said that he was not sure when he might leave the capital, but that he may announce his departure as early as this week.

--Mark Pitsch & Lynn Schnaiberg

Vol. 14, Issue 41

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