Federal Regulations and You
October 20, 2010
• Irv Bodofsky
– SUNY Upstate Medical University, Emeritus
• Dan Hunter
– Buffalo State College, Emeritus
• Mike McGraw
– Tompkins Cortland Community College, Emeritus
The Hierarchy of Legal Authority
• Sub regulatory guidance
– Federal Student Aid Handbook
– Dear Colleague Letters
– Emails, letters, etc.
Why be concerned about regulations?
• FA handbook is ED’s interpretation. You may
have a different interpretation.
• Only way to understand what you really can
and cannot do under the law.
• Professional Responsibility.
Why Create Regulations?
• To implement legislation
– Defines how to comply with the law
– Some legislation is considered to be self-
implementing. Appropriations, for example.
– Sometimes Congress makes certain things off
limits. PJ, for example.
• To solve problems that come to the attention
of the Department of Ed.
– Example, regulations expected November 1
• What is it?
• Who can participate?
– Failure to achieve consenus
• Goal is to produce an NPRM
• Notice of Proposed Rule Making
• A formal notice to the public by a government
agency that they intend to create new
regulations or modify already existing
READING & RESPONDING
TO AN NPRM
How Not to Fall Asleep
• Further Information
• The most important part
• Recap of NegReg process and
• Explanation of each major proposal, and
the justification for it.
• Proposed Regulations
• Costs and Benefits
• Clarity of Regulations
• Regulatory Flexibitily
• Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
• Invitation to Comment
• New regulations effective at the beginning of
the next academic year (July 1)
• Final regs must be published by November 1,
• If not published by November 1, not effective
until the following year.
• 45 day emergency implementation
• Early implementation if deemed
advantageous to schools and specifically
• Keep it short
• Explain who you are, and why you are
• Submit by the deadline
• Constructive criticism
• What Counts?
– Numbers - Associations are only one response
– Content - a good argument can make the point
• What to say?
– If you agree, say so, if you disagree, why?
– Is their reason valid?
– Are there alternatives?
– Is the proposed language clear?
– Use examples of how students will be impacted
• Copy FA Associations and your boss!
• Yes, the Department staff reads every letter and
every comment that is received.
• Comments are broken down by the section of
the regulation that they apply to, and each is
• A response is drafted for each comment.
Where the Rubber Meets the Road
What to look for
• Analysis of public comments and changes
• Regulatory language
Sources of Information
• NASFAA, NYSFAAA, EASFAA
• State agencies
• Other associations (NACUBO)
• Media (Chronicle, Insider Higher Ed)
Compilations of Regs
• NASFAA – need to be a member
• IFAP –
– Under laws and regulations
– Only from 2008
– Or GPO compliation, but compiliations don’t have
preamble, etc. Which is why people like George
save a paper or electronic copy.
A FAMILIAR TOPIC
•Draft of FAFSA for 2011-2012
•Request for comments
•Here is a chance to make a
In case you
How to get copies
of the FAFSA
NASFAA’S SUMMARY OF CHANGES
• Colors are different
• Design consistent with 2010-2011
• New Question #27 for applicants who indicate
they have a high school diploma. What is the
name of the high school where you or will
receive high school diploma. Write in the
name of high school and the city and state.
The word “loan”
was taken out
of the sentence.
SUMMARY OF CHANGES
• Review the Summary of Changes
• A number of questions have been re-worded
• For example:
• #17, – Month and year you were married;
remarried, separated, divorced or widowed
• #60 (2010-11), #59 (2011-12) same change
• May agree with the change, if you do, say that
you agree in your letter 36
• Copy to:
• By Mail:
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue SW,LBJ
Washington, D.C. 20202-4537
• We hope that this presentation gives you
some ideas on how to prepare for and
respond to NPRMs and read final regulations.
• Please consider taking a moment or two to
prepare and send a response to the FAFSA
Notice of Proposed Information Collection.
• Thank You.