June 26, 2018

Van Hollen Provision Providing $5 Million in New Funding for Paid Senate Internships Passes Full Senate

Today U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, applauded the Senate’s overwhelming passage of his provision dedicating $5 million in new funding for the sole purpose of providing financial compensation to interns in Senate offices. Senator Van Hollen’s bipartisan amendment – which he worked on with Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Richard Durbin (D-Ill.)  – was included within the Fiscal Year 2019 Energy and Water, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Legislative Branch Appropriations Bill, which passed the Senate with a vote of 86 to 5.
“Congressional interns play important roles in our offices and gain valuable experiences by participating in the legislative process. We are thankful for their tireless work – but we should also provide them with compensation. By providing dedicated funding to help offices pay their interns, we also help level the playing field and provide opportunities for those young Americans who do not have the financial means to dedicate an entire semester or summer to an internship without pay. I want to thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for supporting this effort, and I’ll keep working to make sure all students have the opportunity to intern on Capitol Hill,” said Senator Van Hollen.
Senator Van Hollen already pays his interns a stipend out of his existing Senate accounts, but this new funding will ensure that all Senate offices have a dedicated source of funding to pay their interns. The new funding is directed to be allocated among Senators’ offices in relative proportion to funds allocated for each office’s administrative and clerical assistance allowance for Fiscal Year 2019. On average, each office will be allocated an estimated $50,000 for intern compensation.