May 27, 2015
Big Brown Power Plant operated by Luminant, a subsidiary of Energy Future Holdings.

Electric Utility Industry Created Their Own Air Pollution Permits, Held Private Meetings With Texas Regulators

Emails obtained and released today by the Environmental Integrity Project show that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) worked behind closed doors with the state’s electric power trade association and utility companies to weaken standards for air pollution control permits.

The emails and documents reveal that Association of Electric Companies of Texas (AECT) and utility employees held private meetings with state regulators to discuss revisions to the permits and provided language that was incorporated verbatim by the regulations into the final text of the revised permits. The language ended up nullifying the federal Clean Air Act hourly limits on particulate pollution during the …

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May 26, 2015
jackmassimino

Corinthian CEO Led For-Profit College Industry PAC

An email newsletter obtained by Republic Report reveals that the political action committee of APSCU, the main lobbying group of for-profit colleges, was headed in 2012 by Jack Massimino, CEO of the now disgraced, bankrupt Corinthian Colleges. The newsletter also highlights the active involvement in APSCUPAC of other for-profit college executives whose companies are now under investigation — or have been penalized or shut down — by law enforcement.

The involvement of these executives and other information exposed in the newsletter add to the long list of reasons to doubt the credibility of APSCU, the prime mover of efforts to rid for-profit colleges …

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May 20, 2015
Steve-Gunderson-President-CEO-APSCU

In Court, For-Profit Colleges Demand End to Gainful Employment Rule

The big for-profit colleges were back in court in Washington again this morning, arguing to a federal judge that the Obama Administration did not have the power to subject them to even the most minimal standards of accountability for leaving their students with overwhelming debt.

Despite the mountain of evidence that many for-profit colleges have engaged in predatory behavior by deceiving, under-educating, and overcharging students, despite the scores of lawsuits and investigations underway by federal and state law enforcement, these for-profit colleges are demanding permanent entitlement to billions annually from taxpayers without having to meet any real measures of success at all.

The issue …

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May 12, 2015
repweber

Jeb Bush Campaign Adviser Serves on Board of Predatory College ITT

Former Congressman Vin Weber (R-MN) is an advisor to the unofficial presidential campaign of Jeb Bush, as both Weber and the Bush camp have confirmed. Weber recently told Fox News, “I think that Governor Bush is right on track in terms of how he’s been thinking about this potential race and when he needs to get into it and what needs to happen.”

But Weber is much more than a Bush campaign advisor. He’s a lobbyist who has pressed his former colleagues in Congress on behalf of clients like AT&T, the pharmaceutical trade association PHRMA, student loan giant Sallie Mae, and …

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May 5, 2015
healdclosed

50,000 Owed Money by Corinthian Colleges Include Lobbyists, Scammers

Yesterday, Corinthian Colleges, one of the worst-behaving for-profit college companies, capped its dramatic collapse by filing for bankruptcy. A business that was getting as much as $1.4 billion a year in federal aid now has claimed in court that it has just $19 million in assets, but $143 million in liabilities. So who is owed all this money, and what does that tell us about Corinthian’s conduct?

The Intercept‘s Lee Fang yesterday noted some of the most interesting Corinthian creditors, listed in the company’s court filing. Some of those whom Corinthian promised money were public cheerleaders for the school and …

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April 24, 2015

Mom Misled by Kaplan For-Profit College: Part of Miami Herald’s Blockbuster Industry Expose

A blockbuster, year-in-the-making investigative series about the for-profit college industry appears online in the Miami Herald today, and, as industry analysts at BMO Capital Markets predicted earlier this week, “Obviously, this is not going to portray the industry in a positive light.” It doesn’t, but that’s because the industry practices and conduct that the Herald found are simply abominable. (I have studied bad actors in this industry for five years and have found the same.) With both Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush already addressing this issue, it’s one that’s drawing increasing public attention.

The Herald‘s disclosures about the way for-profit colleges have ripped off students …

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April 22, 2015
westwood

Abuses at Corinthian Are Mirrored At Other Big For-Profit Colleges

An education technology executive who previously worked with the for-profit college industry told me last year, “The biggest misconception about for-profits is that they are schools. They are call centers that happen to have a school built around it.”

That is a deadly accurate insight.

Numerous federal and state law enforcement investigations, and media investigations, have exposed an industry desperate to always be closing — signing up as many students as possible for high-priced, questionable quality career education programs, without regard to whether the programs will help a given student, or instead will leave that student unemployed and mired in …

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April 21, 2015
blunt

Senator Blunt Blames College Students for Borrowing

Parroting a familiar talking point by bad actors in the for-profit college industry, Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO), appeared last week to blame students for their high student loan burdens. After questioning Secretary of Education Arne Duncan at a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on Thursday about regulations aimed at for-profit colleges, Blunt, a member of the Senate GOP leadership, said [VIDEO at 1:38:00]:

We ought to be talking about … the debt problem when you get out of school. How much of that related to the actual cost of going to school and how much it related to what you thought your …

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