representing Alma adamsAlma Shealey Adams Building a Culture of Environmental Preparedness in HBCUs In Honor of Mother’s Day, Lawmakers Should Pass Momnibus Law Officials Discuss Proposals to Address Deep Disparities in Education, Digital Divide MORE (DN.C.) has threatened not to support his party’s next $ 3.5 trillion social spending plan unless the package includes more federal aid for historically black colleges and universities (HBCU) .
“We can’t rebuild better unless we rebuild our HBCUs better. Promises made must be promises kept, ”Adams told Punchbowl News, which was the first to break the news on Friday.
A Democratic source familiar with the MP’s plans also confirmed the report to The Hill.
Adams’ move comes as Democrats have come under fire from some who say the massive spending plan the party is working to craft fails to meet the timing of HBCU funding.
One of the provisions of the plan that Adams contested with is part of the HBCU and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSI) research and development grant bill, the source said. This section would set aside $ 2 billion for these purposes, which the source says is significantly lower than the billions more previously offered by President BidenJoe BidenHouse The Democrat threatens to vote against the party’s spending bill if the HBCU does not receive more federal aid. Defense and National Security Overnight – Pentagon’s Deadly Mistake Haitians Stranded in Texas Prolong Biden’s Immigration Problems MORE.
A few weeks ago, Adams, a staunch supporter of the HBCU, and Sen. Raphael WarnockRaphael WarnockThe Hill’s 12:30 p.m. report – Brought to you by Facebook – Polls open in California as Newsom fights for job Stacey Abrams backs Senate Democrats’ voting rights compromise Warnock gets approval from a leading abortion rights group in its candidacy for re-election PLUS (D-Ga.) Wrote to the heads of the House and Senate education committees to request $ 40 billion in funding to improve the physical and research structure in HBCUs and MSIs – a request which, according to the assistant, was refused.
At the time, the couple, both HBCU graduates, highlighted the systemic barriers institutions face when it comes to investing in infrastructure and receiving federal research funding.
In a June 2018 report released by the United States Government Accountability Office, a number of HBCUs surveyed reported millions of pending maintenance delays. There is also a history of predominantly white institutions receiving federal research funding at rates disproportionate to HBCUs.
While the source said Adams believes the Biden administration has helped make great strides for the HBCUs so far, she is concerned that the current wording in the legislative text of the Democrats’ upcoming spending plan pits the HBCUs against other MSIs instead of having dedicated funding streams.
The United Negro College Fund Inc. (UNCF) also released a statement regarding wording drafted by the House Education and Labor Committee for the plan after the legislation was released.
Michael L. Lomax, President and CEO of UNCF, said then that more “financial investments need to be made” and that HBCUs “should never be able to compete with better resourced institutions. , with higher endowments and teams. subsidize writers who are ready, willing, and able to siphon off the funding the Biden administration has envisioned to help our institutions. “
There are more than 100 HBCUs in the country, compared to more than 800 MSI, according to the Washington Post.
In a recent interview with the newspaper, Lodriguez Murray, UNCF senior vice president for public policy and government affairs, also noted that a number of larger MSIs have more resources than most. of HBCUs, including grant writers.
The newspaper also reported, citing statements by congressional assistants, that lawmakers are considering solutions to the subsidy problem.
Over the past two weeks, 13 House committees have worked to craft their portions of the key massive spending plan of President Biden’s economic program.
However, leaders are expected to make other changes to the legislation before it comes to a vote on the ground.