Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, announced $30 million in federal funding for the Impact Aid program. The Impact Aid program provides payments to school districts that have lost revenue due to the presence of tax-exempt federal property or increased expenditures which includes military bases and the enrollment of federally-connected children. Gillibrand also co-sponsored an amendment that would correct provisions in Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) which adversely affected Impact Aid; preventing cuts from 26 NY schools of a combined $400,000 per year in Impact Aid funding. These provisions passed the Senate as part of the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act and now heads to the President for signature.
“Families in the North Country rely on this funding to keep their schools strong and provide our children with the education and services they need,” said Senator Gillibrand. “I was proud to fight for this critical investment to help schools and military communities in New York and across the country provide students with quality educational programs.”
The Impact Aid programs through the Department of Defense serve military-connected school districts where military dependents make up at least 20-percent of the student population. Fort Drum supports over 36,000 servicemembers and civilians, including over 18,700 full-time uniformed and civilian jobs. Fort Drum is home to one of the Army’s premier and most-regularly deployed units, the 10th Mountain Division. It also serves as a major training center for reserve and New York National Guard units. Additionally, nearly 3,000 military retirees and their families live in the vicinity of Fort Drum.