Editor, Daily Nexus:

I am writing this letter for the thousands of UCSB students who have federal student aid. With the already-high number of articles written in the Nexus regarding Bush’s tax cuts, more attention is needed on how these tax cuts will affect low-income students, student parents and YOU.

The House and Senate have passed a budget resolution that could paralyze spending on federal student aid. The budget resolution dedicated $1 billion less than the president’s budget – which was already inadequate – to education. This means that much-needed increases to programs like the Pell Grant, SEOG and LEAP (grants to low-income students), GEAR UP (early intervention for low-income middle-schoolers), CAMPIS (campus childcare) and the National Family Planning Program are in jeopardy. Many programs will even face cuts.

The budget set aside $6.2 billion for programs that address national priorities. We know that education is America’s top priority, so we must make sure that the $6.2 billion goes into education. The best way to make that happen is to make sure the Appropriations Committee dedicates the $6.2 billion to the labor, education, and health and human services allocations.

Call Senator Barbara Boxer, Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative Lois Capps today! Even though our federally elected representatives may seem distant from us, the power to protect your student funding is just a phone call away. Call their offices directly or through the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121. If they are members of the Appropriations Committee, tell them to include the unallocated $6.2 billion in the labor, education, and health and human services subcommittee’s allocation. If they are not members of the Appropriations Committee, ask them to contact the Appropriations Committee with the above message. Not sure if they’re on the committee? Go to www.studentaidalliance.org for committee lists and other information.

Don’t underestimate your power for change; call your representative today!