Friday, September 07, 2007

Congress passes student loan bill that will become law

In what is the fourth major legislative victory for Democrats this year, the House and Senate today both approved with veto-proof margins a bill to cut federal loan interest rates and boost student aid by $20 billion.

Specifically, the bill will increase the maximum Pell grant, which goes to the poorest college students, from $4,310 a year to $5,400 a year by 2012 and will cut interest rates on federally backed student loans to poor and middle-class students from 6.8 percent to 3.4 percent over the next four years. The bill also sets up a loan-forgiveness program for college graduates who work for 10 years in public service professions, such teaching or nursing and caps annual payments for students at a percentage of their income.

President Bush had previously threatened a veto, but the White House said today he would sign it. The legislation will begin taking effect on October 1st.


Nat-Wu said...

That's great, but it's a long way yet to ensure that everyone has a chance to go to college.

Xanthippas said...

Excellent. Yes, it is a long way and we should continue to press Democrats on education at the state and the national level. But, it's a start and a hell of a lot better than what we got under the Republicans, which was lenders ripping off college students with the aid of the schools they attend.