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Thune, Smith Bill to Provide Financial Stability to Federally Impacted School Districts Unanimously Passes Senate

Senators’ bill would provide flexibility to school districts as they apply for Impact Aid Program funding

December 14, 2021

U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Tina Smith (D-Minn.) today issued the following statements after the Senate unanimously passed their Supplemental Impact Aid Flexibility Act last night. This bipartisan legislation would allow school districts that participate in the Impact Aid Program to use previously reported student headcounts on their Impact Aid applications for the 2022-2023 school year due to ongoing, yet temporary, enrollment fluctuations stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.


“It’s critical for school districts in South Dakota that participate in the Impact Aid Program to have the funding stability and certainty they need,” said Thune. “I’m glad the Senate unanimously passed this important legislation to help ensure these schools have the necessary resources for next school year.” 


“As the pandemic continues to hit many Minnesota school districts hard, it’s important that districts receiving Impact Aid maintain reliable, stable funding so students can keep learning,” said Smith. “I’m glad we could once again deliver on this and ensure that while the pandemic continues to affect school operations, our Impact Aid districts won’t have to recalculate their student headcounts.”


The Impact Aid Program reimburses federally impacted schools – schools that are either located on federal property or who have students living on federal property – that often collect less in local property taxes. Last year, Thune and Smith introduced the Impact Aid Coronavirus Relief Act, a related bill that President Trump signed into law on December 4, 2020, that ensured schools didn’t need to go through the burdensome process of recalculating federally connected students in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.