Time to forgive military student loans, say senators

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WWith federal student loan forbearance ending in just under 10 weeks, a group of US senators led by Nevada Senator Catherine Cortez Masto is urging the Biden administration to implement loan cancellation for members military service.

Cortez Masto’s was the main signing on a letter by 14 senators to the secretary of the Ministry of Education, Michael Cardona. Nevadan Senator Jacky Rosen also signed.

An estimated 200,000 military personnel now owe more than $ 2.9 billion in student loans, according to the senators’ letter.


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“Many of them have planned their financial futures around the promise of eventual student debt relief,” the senators wrote. “However, a recent report by the Government Accountability Office indicated that approximately 94% of military and civilian employees of the United States Department of Defense who had previously requested relief under the program were turned down.”

In October, the US Department of Education announced it would review the Public Student Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which promises to write off the remainder of a borrower’s federal student loans, if that borrower has worked for 10 years. in the public or nonprofit sector and made qualifying income-based payments during that time. The PSLF program has proven difficult to navigate for borrowers and has a catastrophic approval rating, when reported as around 2%.

As part of these announced changes, the military were allowed to count months spent in active service with the PSLF, even though their loans were deferred at the time.

President Donald Trump first suspended student loan payments during the pandemic, and President Joe Biden extended that hiatus until January 31, 2022. Biden said he would not be extended any further.

Progressive Democrats continue their call for global cancellation up to $ 50,000 in student loan debt per borrower and many want Biden to act by executive order. Biden pushed back, saying he would stand up to a $ 10,000 pardon if approved by Congress. Instead, he implemented more focused efforts, including forgetting millions of dollars in debt for predatory for-profit college students and people with disabilities.

Canceling student loans is not part of the broad social policy bill being discussed in Washington DC.

Nevada Current is part of States Newsroom, a network of news offices supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c (3) public charity. Nevada Current maintains editorial independence. Contact editor Hugh Jackson with any questions: [email protected] Follow Nevada Current on Facebook and Twitter.

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