WASHINGTON DC- The Department of Education has proposed rules that would “expand and improve” student debt relief programs, which have been supported by many Senate Democrats, including Patty Murray (D-Wash.). Senator Murray led 22 other senators in drafting a letter supporting the proposals, but also asking for further improvements.
“The department’s proposed rules will help provide further relief to distressed borrowers, protect students and taxpayers from institutional fraud and abuse, and ensure our federal student loans program delivers on its promise of bring higher education within the reach of more students without subjecting them to complex, burdensome or punitive requirements that make it more difficult to obtain the relief they are due,” said a letter from 23 senators to Miguel Cardona, Secretary of Education. “This proposal represents a huge step forward for students and borrowers, and when finalized, will help ensure that government benefits and programs work as intended by Congress.”
The senators suggest the Department expand the proposals by strengthening its borrower protection rules, expanding relief for those seeking leave from closed schools, expanding eligibility for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program, eliminating the capitalization of interest and further protecting the right of students to seek redress in court. .
“As the Department works to finalize these regulations, we urge you to build on this progress by strengthening rules in other vital areas, including income-contingent reimbursement and gainful employment,” the letter said. . “We also urge the Department to continue its efforts to protect borrowers outside of the rule-making process, including by immediately and effectively using its existing oversight and enforcement authorities to crack down on bad actors and provide the most relief. available to borrowers.”
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) also signed the letter.