National Writing Project

Fiscal Year 2003 Funding Likely for NWP

By: NWP Staff
Publication: The Voice, Vol. 8, No. 1
Date: January-February 2003

Summary: In early January, the House Appropriations Committee approved $14 million for the writing project...


While the details have yet to be completely worked out, it appears likely that the National Writing Project will receive an appropriation of about $14 million in fiscal year 2003, matching last year's level of federal funding.

In early January, the House Appropriations Committee approved $14 million for the writing project, a decision that was noteworthy for a couple reasons. One, the committee found funding for the writing project without going over budget, in a year when federal dollars are extremely limited. And two, the recommendation came despite the fact that the Bush administration had recommended eliminating funding for NWP. Coupled with the Senate Appropriations Committee's recommendation of $18 million for the writing project, the House action seems to assure that NWP will receive federal dollars in fiscal year 2003.

There are a number of senators and representatives responsible for NWP's latest legislative success. As he has in the past, Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) supplied crucial leadership on behalf of the project throughout the appropriations process. And several NWP supporters on both the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education deserve credit as well, including Rep. Ralph Regula (R-OH), Rep. Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA). One congressional aide told writing project directors that NWP was earmarked for funding not only because of the good work our sites do, but also because we're good at telling our story. The latter seems testament to the many hours NWP site leaders and teacher-consultants have spent faxing letters to Capitol Hill in recent months.

Congressional leaders hope to have the fiscal year 2003 omnibus spending bill passed and signed into law by early February. Regardless of the timing, NWP's position in that bill appears to be secure. Barring something unforeseen, NWP will continue to receive federal funding for yet another year!

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