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Bush 2008 Budget Seeks Boost In Pell Grants February 2, 2007

Posted by notapundit in US News, White House.
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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP)–President George W. Bush’s 2008 budget will call for the largest Pell grant increase in three decades, a boost that would exceed one passed by the House this week, Education Secretary Margaret Spellings said Thursday.

Pell grants go to low-income students and do not have to be paid back. They’re awarded to more than 5 million students a year.

The Bush administration is proposing to increase the maximum Pell grant by $550 next year, to a maximum of $4,600. The top grant would climb to $5,400 over five years.

The current maximum Pell grant is $4,050. The House passed a spending bill Wednesday to boost that to $4,310. The Senate is expected to go along with that increase.

Democrats have said they want to raise the award even more in the near future, and have said $5,100 is a possible target.

The maximum Pell grant award hasn’t gone up in five years.

Increasing the top award was a key recommendation of a commission that Spellings tasked with looking at the future of higher education, including ways to make it more affordable to low-income students.

Spellings made the announcement in remarks prepared for delivery at an education conference in Raleigh. The president’s budget proposals are due out Monday.

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