DC Digest - January 14, 2011
In Today's Issue:
- Supreme Court Finds Medical Residents Are Employees for FICA Purposes
- The House's New Higher Ed Leader
- Obama Administration Affirms Commitment to Visas for Scholars
- Duke Alum Reaches 10 Years of Service at the Republican Study Committee
- For-Profit Colleges Facing Taxpayer-Funds Loss Fight Aid Limit
- Reforming American Postsecondary Education
- After Repeal of 'Don't Ask,' Elite Colleges Reconsider ROTC
SUPREME COURT FINDS MEDICAL RESIDENTS ARE EMPLOYEES FOR FICA PURPOSES
For purposes of the IRS, medical residents are not students and therefore are not exempt from paying FICA payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, according to the U.S. Supreme Court in a case involving doctors in training at the Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota Medical Center.
In an 8-0 ruling, the high court ruled Tuesday that residents are not entitled to the student exemption from paying FICA taxes because they work more than 40 hours a week. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the IRS ruling on the matter "is a reasonable construction" of what Congress intended for student tax exemptions. - from the Minneapolis Star Tribune
Supreme Court Rules Medical Schools Must Pay Social Security Taxes for Residents (ACEnet.edu)
Medical Schools Must Pay Social Security Taxes for Residents, Supreme Court Rules (Chronicle of HigherEd)
THE HOUSE'S NEW HIGHER ED LEADER
In an interview, North Carolina's Virginia Foxx offers insights into the views and issues that will shape her agenda as head of House's postsecondary panel.
The House's New Higher Ed Leader (InsideHigherEd)
OBAMA ADMINISTRATION AFFIRMS COMMITMENT TO VISAS FOR SCHOLARS
Harold Koh, legal adviser to the U.S. State Department, has written a letter to a number of academic and civil liberties groups pledging that federal officials will make every effort not to apply ideological tests in deciding which foreign scholars can have visas for academic trips to the United States. "In evaluating the reasons for the proposed travel, the department will give significant and sympathetic weight to the fact that the primary purpose of the visa applicant's travel will be to assume a university teaching post, to fulfill teaching engagements, to attend academic conferences, or for similar expressive or educational activities," the letter says. The American Association of University Professors and other groups that have been pushing for such assurances praised the letter.
Letter to ACLU from Harold Koh (AAUP.org)
DUKE ALUM REACHES 10 YEARS OF SERVICE AT REPUBLICAN STUDY COMMITTEE
New Chairman of the U.S. House Republican Study Committee (RSC), Jim Jordan of Ohio, asked Paul Teller (T '93) to stay on as the RSC's executive director. Rep. Jordan is the sixth RSC chairman under which Teller has served (two as executive director), and February 2011 will mark Teller's tenth year of service at the RSC. He can be reached at email@example.com.
FOR-PROFIT COLLEGES FACING TAXPAYER-FUNDS LOSS FIGHT AID LIMIT
For-profit colleges are urging the U.S. Congress to change a law that threatens their access to billions of dollars in federal student aid, the companies' biggest source of revenue. Education companies that get more than 90 percent of their revenue from the Education Department's student grants and loans for two years in a row may lose eligibility for the money under the law. Changing the rule will be the industry's most important battle in Congress, said Jarrel Price, an analyst with Height Analytics in Washington.
For-Profit Colleges Facing Loss of Taxpayer Funds Fight Aid Limit (Bloomberg)
REFORMING AMERICAN POSTSECONDARY EDUCATION - OPINION PIECE
In recent years, we have begun to see that data relating to college completion suggest that the United States is no longer first in the world when it comes to the number of our young people obtaining postsecondary education and college degrees. If left unaddressed, this trend will reduce our future productivity and economic growth. The rapid growth in postsecondary completion during the last decade among competing economies around the world suggests that we can no longer rest on laurels that may not exist.
Reforming American Postsecondary Education (Huffington Post)
AFTER REPEAL OF 'DON'T ASK,' ELITE COLLEGES RECONSIDER ROTC
The recent repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," the controversial law that banned gay and lesbian people from serving openly in the military, could help to close the books on the culture wars of the 60s and bring the military back to campuses. Several university leaders, including Harvard's president, Drew Faust, say they are ready to welcome the military back to campus. And top military leaders have signaled a desire to return to the colleges after a four-decade standoff.
The repeal could also cool tensions on law-school campuses between military recruiters and faculty members who said "don't ask, don't tell" conflicted with their own antidiscrimination policies. In the past, some law schools have been threatened with the loss of federal funds for barring military recruiters from campus.
After Repeal of 'Don't Ask,' Elite Colleges Reconsider ROTC (Chronicle of HigherEd)