NIRSA’s Government Affairs Committee stays up-to-date on the latest federal and state policy and legislative news through a variety of scanning tools. One particular resource they use is the bi-weekly Policy Pages provided by Active Policy Solutions. (For more on this partnership, along with other SAHEC associations, have with Active Policy Solutions, see below.)

The policy issues included in the Policy Pages document are highlights of a point in time. They are by no means exhaustive and change continually – so matters discussed in the last issue normally will not carry over to the next unless there is some updated action to be discussed.

The Committee encourages NIRSA members to keep themselves informed on federal and state policy issues affecting their work as professionals on campuses. These issues could be specific to higher education, physical activity, or NIRSA’s strategic value areas. If you have an issue that is of concern to your campus, reach out the Government Affairs Committee.

Policy Page documents will be stored, as a resource for NIRSA members, in the NIRSA Connect Community library. You can find them within the “Member Benefits” folder in a subfolder titled “Federal and State Policy Pages.”

Full SAHEC Policy Pages

In this issue:

Government Updates

Federal Budget

  • President Trump and GOP congressional leaders lay out priorities in next COVID-19 legislative package
  • Senate proposing five-year shield from COVID-19 lawsuits

Federal Education

  • Education Secretary Betsy DeVos sued by states over student loan forgiveness change
  • Senate hearing on college athletics and sports betting is on the way
  • Title IX new sexual harassment rule challenge preliminary injunction hearing to begin soon

Federal Immigration/DACA/Dreamers

  • Trump Administration ordered to accept new DACA applications

Federal Legislation

  • Protection of Women and Girls in Sports Act of 2020 (HR 5702) adds a cosponsor
  • Senate expects college athlete name, image, and likeness bill to begin moving in the chamber
  • Group of Olympic champions, Olympians, survivors, and supporters ask for support of sexual abuse bill

Funding News

  • Utah economic recovery program making money available to colleges, nonprofits, and certain for-profits

State & Local Government


  • Hawaii criminalization of assaulting or threatening sports officials bill passes state legislature and sent to governor


  • Maine making easier school and college camping trips bill passes committee


  • Massachusetts lawmakers want colleges and universities to provide off-campus student info for census


  • Ohio rules for organizing youth athletics during epidemic bill introduced in the state house


  • Return to college updates
  • College students would return to campus, if allowed, according to poll
  • Colleges walk back their fall re-opening plans as COVID-19 cases rise
  • Some universities are moving toward a “Half-Campus” model
  • Auburn University will require students to be tested for COVID-19 before returning to campus
  • University of Maryland housekeepers file complaint over working conditions
  • College summer camp cancellations hurt their revenues
  • UCLA apartment tenants organize a rent strike and call for financial relief from the university
  • Single dorm rooms explored as possible answer for campus housing this fall

Civil Rights News

  • Lawsuit alleges University of Nebraska mishandled reports of sexual assault and harassment
  • Georgia college free speech case will be considered in the Supreme Court


  • Return to play updates
  • NCAA issues next set of return-to-play guidelines
  • Liability concerns remain as sports begin to re-open
  • NCAA Division III working group supports two name, image, and likeness concepts
  • Lawsuit alleges Arizona State and NCAA concussion protocols lead to player’s suicide
Full SAHEC Policy Pages

About NIRSA’s partnership with Active Policy Solutions

As an association, NIRSA strives to monitor and track policy and legislative issues with the potential to impact our members or the campus communities they serve. These issues are wide ranging and may pertain to higher education, employment law, physical fitness, or our strategic values areas.

NIRSA has joined with a subset of SAHEC members (ACUHO-I, ACPA, ASCA, NASPA, and NIRSA) in hiring Active Policy Solutions to assist with monitoring, tracking, analyzing, and determining appropriate action on issues relevant to our associations. Through our partnership with SAHEC, NIRSA continues to monitor policy, legislation, and advocacy work that affects both the higher education and physical activity space. Active Policy Solutions provides government relations and advocacy support to NIRSA and the Association’s SAHEC partners.

  • For more information, please contact NIRSA Director of Advocacy & Strategic Partnerships Erin O’Sullivan.
Director of Advocacy & Strategic Partnerships at | NIRSA Profile

Erin O'Sullivan is currently the Director of Advocacy & Strategic Partnerships at NIRSA.