Manchin, legislators introduce bill to lower student loan rates - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Manchin, legislators introduce bill to lower student loan rates

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BLUEFIELD, W. Va (WVVA)-- As college tuition rates increase, many families may be taking out loans to pay the price.

But federal student loan interest rates are set to double on July 1st if congress does not take action.

Senator Joe Manchin, along with a team of other senators, introduced the Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act which he told WVVA Thursday will bring those rates down, and give students more confidence they can afford the education they need to compete in today's world.

He said the bill would bring not just Federal Subsidized student loans, but also Unsubsidized and Parent PLUS interest rates down and cap them for 10 years.

Senator Jack Reed, a Democrat from Rhode Island, said it's important that the Senate consider the bill quickly.

"And finally we have to ensure that when students take these loans out, they deserve predictability and certainty that they won't get locked into very high interest rates. So any adjustable rates should have a reasonable cap."

Congress passed a temporary fix to keep the interest rates low for another year back in 2012. It expires July 1st of this year.

In a press release, Manchin's office says, "The Student Loan Certainty Act requires that, for each academic year, all newly-issued student loans be set to the U.S. Treasury 10-year borrowing rate plus 1.85% for subsidized and unsubsidized undergraduate Stafford loans; plus 3.4% for graduate Stafford loans; and plus 4.4% for PLUS loans. The interest rate would be fixed over the life of the loan and the cap on interest rates for consolidated loans would remain at 8.25%. The Congressional Budget Office has determined this legislation would reduce the deficit by $1 billion over ten years."
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