College Student Loans On Congress’ Summer Agenda
July 8, 2013 — Congress returns to work today after the Fourth of July recess, with a student-loan fix near the top of the “to-do” list. Network Indiana’s Eric Berman reports…
Interest rates on government-subsidized Stafford loans doubled last week to six-point-eight-percent, after the Senate rejected two competing proposals for keeping the rate down: a Republican bill to link Stafford rates to the rate on 10-year Treasury notes, and a two-year extension of the three-point-four-percent rate which expired last week. Modified versions of those proposals are back on the table this week.
Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly (D) says he‘s open to both ideas, but says Congress must act to bring the rate down. House Republicans have passed a bill tying student loans to market rates. Donnelly voted to block Senate Republicans‘ version last month. He says it left out a key element of the House bill: a ceiling on how high the rate could go.
Other Democrats, including President Obama, have complained the House bill‘s cap is too high. Subsidized Stafford loans account for about a quarter of government-sponsored student loans.