Student loan debt continues to mount as the Federal Reserve reported a major increase to $1.49 trillion in February of this year. But, a partial solution is coming.
Image: The Federal Reserve Bank, St. Louis – 2/8/18
As part of the spending bill that Congress passed last month, $350 million was allocated for a fix it forgiveness program for some types of student loans. Senator Elizabeth Warren has been surveying the issue and individuals trying to take advantage of the provisions where she found that it was quite complex, answers were in complete from the Department of Education and work still needed to be done to setup the process. She found many firefighters and teachers having a difficult time getting into the program. Prior to passage of the spending bill Senators Whitehouse and Kaine wrote a bill to setup a student debt forgiveness program and get it funded, their bill set the stage for Democrats to push for provisions of the bill to be included in the omnibus spending bill.
This solution is still not enough compared to the huge issue of $1.49 trillion outstanding placing an anchor of debt on our young people when they need to be investing in starting their families and careers and buying homes. In blog of February 16th in our archives, we review an idea to cancel all student debt. We like the idea moving forward, yet recommend that forgiveness be done in stages, by reducing interest rates, offering Heartland Service, providing a universal national service option and corporate sponsorship of an internship by the student.