Stop student loan rate hikes
June 22, 2012
OPINION By LOIS CAPPS
I wanted to give an update on an important issue that will affect many Central Coast residents and families if it’s not resolved soon.
Without Congressional action student loan interest rates will double on July 1st.
I am adamantly opposed to the doubling of these interest rates and am working to keep it from happening.
In California, more than 572,000 student borrowers would pay nearly a half billion dollars in additional interest payments over the course of one year, if interest rates are allowed to double to 6.8 percent. This would cost the average student about $1,000 over the course of the loan.
That’s why I’m supporting the Stop the Rate Hike Act of 2012, which would hold interest rates steady at 3.4 percent. To ensure we don’t increase our deficit, the bill pays for the cost of maintaining the lower interest rate by eliminating unnecessary taxpayer subsidies to large oil and gas companies.
Making sure young people have access to affordable higher education is essential for their success. Too many of them, and their families, are already struggling to pay for college and it would be just plain wrong to let the rates on their loans double.
I know that keeping the interest rates low isn’t a silver bullet to higher education affordability – but it is an important step to containing the growing cost of college, which has been skyrocketing in the wake of devastating state budget cuts.
Ensuring that the cost of attending a public university in California isn’t out of reach for all qualified students and their families will require a renewed commitment to investing in higher education.
Please know that I strongly believe in keeping college affordable, as it is absolutely critical in order to ensure that our country has a strong workforce in today’s global economy.