DeVos drops controversial rule on coronavirus aid | TheHill – The Hill

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Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosConservatives press for concessions in GOP coronavirus relief bill COVID -19: A course on going to college safely Organized labor staging political resurgence for 2020 MORE quietly dropped a controversial rule directing states to give private universities a larger share of coronavirus relief funds than specified by Congress. 

The move comes after a federal judge in Washington, D.C., ruled last week that the rule involving the distribution of $13.5 billion in federal aid was illegal. 

The Education Department did not announce the decision to drop the rule, but put in an update on its CARES Act funding page that following the ruling the rule “is no longer in effect.”

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Opponents of the rule argued that some private schools that have already received aid through the Paycheck Protection Program, which public schools are ineligible to use, will now get assistance twice, while some public schools are left starved for resources during the pandemic.

U.S. District Court Judge Dabney Friedrich, a Trump appointee, ruled that DeVos violated the law when she changed the formula established by Congress int he CARES Act to allow more money to go to private schools. 

“In the end, it is difficult to imagine how Congress could have been clearer,” Friedrich wrote. “The Department’s arguments to the contrary do not change this straightforward conclusion.”

The Education Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.

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