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Education Bill Moves to Conference

On July 18, the House approved, 424-5, a motion to appoint 14 conferees to serve on a conference committee with 25 Senate conferees to reconcile the differences between the House-passed (H.R. 1) and the Senate-passed (S. 1) education reform bills. The House passed, 384-45, its version of the bill on May 23; the Senate approved, 91-8, its bill on June 14.

The House rejected, 126-296, a motion by Rep. James Barcia (D-MI) to instruct the House conferees to accept language included in the Senate-passed legislation that would require the federal government to fully fund the costs of special education programs. Currently, the federal government provides 14 percent of special education costs; full funding would require federal funding for 40 percent of the costs of the program. The conferees held their first meeting on July 19.

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