May 6, 2022

Higher Ed Policy Roundup: Vol. 6 - Issue 5

Policy and Advocacy


This Week in Washington

On Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki suggested that any student debt forgiveness that the Biden-Harris administration considers implementing would be limited by an income cap. Recall that President Joe Biden confirmed last week that he was considering cancelling some amount of student loan debt, though he clarified it would not be the $50,000 that progressives have been asking for. Regarding the caps, Bloomberg reported that the administration was weighing limiting forgiveness to borrowers making less than $125,000.

Last week, the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Federal Student Aid (FSA) Richard Cordray was interviewed by Yahoo! Finance regarding a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that found implementation issues with the income-driven repayment program which resulted in undercounting the number of borrowers eligible for forgiveness. When asked about the report, Cordray admitted that the Education Department (ED) had made errors and that ED is working hard to rectify those mistakes.

News You Can Use

Student debt ticks higher as the future of loan forgiveness remains uncertain.

NPR podcast discusses the Federal government's role in causing and fixing the ongoing student debt crisis.

The Pew Charitable Trusts’ new analysis of the Biden administration’s proposed new income-driven repayment plan found that it would make monthly payments more affordable for many student borrowers but pressed for further refinement to better benefit borrowers most at-risk of delinquency and default.

Recent Legislation

The following bill has been recently introduced for consideration by the 117th Congress (2021-2022):

H.R. 7656Stop Reckless Student Loan Actions Act [Rep. Greg Murphy (R-NC-3)] would prohibit the President and Secretary of Education from authorizing a full or partial cancelation of a borrower’s federal student loan debt due to the Covid-19 pandemic or any other national emergency. A companion bill, S. 4094, was introduced in the Senate last week by Sen. John Thune (R-SD).