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March 5, 2014

President’s Budget Unsettling to High-Debt Student Loan Borrowers

On the one hand, the administration proposes to extend PAYE to all student borrowers starting in 2015, regardless of when they borrowed.  That would be nice.   But the administration proposes sharply reducing the loan forgiveness available to high-debt student loan borrowers (except they refer to these cuts as "reform[ing] the PAYE terms to ensure that program benefits are targeted to the neediest borrowers."  The proposed "reforms" are a response to criticism arguing that existing forgiveness provisions permit already expensive schools…

By Heather  |  Category:  Higher education funding  

March 5, 2014

President’s Proposed Budget is a Starting Point

I don't love everything in the President's proposed budget (more detail on that to follow).  No one knows exactly what will happen, but we do know it is supremely unlikely that everything the administration has proposed will come to pass. The federal budget process is a mysterious process with lots of players.  My thanks to the Washington Post for their a fantastic interactive tool explaining how it works.  Here's a snapshot:  

By Heather  |  Category:  Higher education funding  

March 4, 2014

President’s FY 2015 Budget Recommends Tax Breaks For Students

On Monday, White House officials outlined in broad terms several of the President's tax priorities from his proposed fiscal year 2015 federal budget.  Among the key provisions, his FY 2015 budget asks Congress to make permanent the American Opportunity Tax Credit, currently set to expire in December 2017.  The administration says the credit will provide an average benefit of $1,110 to 11.5 million families. The benefit provides up to $2,500 in partially refundable tax credits for tuition. President Obama is also proposing a simplification…

February 7, 2014

Proposed Bill Aims to Bolster Accountability

U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), and Patty Murray (D-WA) have co-signed a bill that would establish benchmarks for college access, affordability and outcomes.  Dubbed the “College Affordability and Innovation Act of 2014,” the bill also proposes the establishment of a competitive grant program to fund a series of pilot programs at a handful of institutions that wish to test innovative higher education programs. Among the bills key proposals: Establishes a 15-member commission on higher education accountability…

January 23, 2014

Congress Passes FY 2014 Budget; What You Need to Know

In stark contrast to last year's bitter budget standoff between House Republicans, Senate Democrats, and President Obama that shut down the federal government for 16 days in October, Congressional budget negotiators reached an agreement last week that specifies funding priorities and allocations for the federal government through Sept. 30, 2014.  Striving to avoid another government shutdown and its harmful effects to the still-fragile U.S. economy, House and Senate budget negotiators have been wrangling over how to allocate money…

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