Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 131465
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File Number: 131465 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-637-13 Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: URGING THE US TO REFORM THE CURRENT STUDENT LOAN SYSTEM Introduced: 7/11/2013
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 7/16/2013
Agenda Date: 7/16/2013 Agenda Item Number: 11A12
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS AND THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO REFORM THE CURRENT STUDENT LOAN SYSTEM; URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS TO RESTORE THE 3.4 PERCENT INTEREST RATE ON SUBSIDIZED FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS
Indexes: URGING
Sponsors: Rebeca Sosa, Prime Sponsor
  Lynda Bell, Co-Sponsor
  Esteban L. Bovo, Jr., Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 7/16/2013 11A12 Adopted P

Office of the Chairperson 7/11/2013 Additions 7/16/2013

County Attorney 7/11/2013 Assigned Michael J. Mastrucci

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS AND THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO REFORM THE CURRENT STUDENT LOAN SYSTEM; URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS TO RESTORE THE 3.4 PERCENT INTEREST RATE ON SUBSIDIZED FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS

BODY

WHEREAS, the cost of a college degree in the United States has increased 1,120 percent since 1978, far outpacing the price inflation of consumer goods, medical expenses and food; and
WHEREAS, the average tuition at a four-year public university increased by 15 percent between 2008 and 2010, and private universities were also found to have had significant price increases; and
WHEREAS, with continued concern regarding the rising costs of higher education, the number of student loan borrowers and their average debt have both increased by over 70 percent from 2004 to 2012; and
WHEREAS, there are approximately 37 million student loan borrowers with outstanding student loans today; and
WHEREAS, the amount of outstanding student loan debt has now reached $1 trillion, making it the largest category of consumer debt in the U.S. aside from home mortgages; and
WHEREAS, roughly $864 billion of the $1 trillion in outstanding student loan debt is from federal student loans, while the remaining $150 billion is from private student loans; and
WHEREAS, according to a May 2013 report by the U.S. Department of Education, 11 percent of student loans are now at least 90 days past due, a sharp increase from the 6 percent reported in the first quarter of 2003; and
WHEREAS, the student loan repayment burden continues to worsen, as the interest rate on subsidized federal student loans—those federal student loans offered to students with financial need—recently doubled on July 1, 2013 from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent; and
WHEREAS, absent congressional action in the coming weeks, this increase could spell an extra $2,600 for an average student returning to campus this fall, according to Congress' Joint Economic Committee; and
WHEREAS, interest rates on unsubsidized federal student loans—those federal student loans available to students regardless of financial need—range from 6.8 to 7.9 percent; and
WHEREAS, the long-term consequences of the student loan repayment burden can include a graduate’s choice of jobs, as well as the ability to buy a home; and
WHEREAS, in light of the foregoing, the current student loan system should be reformed—through stemming the rising costs of college, reducing the interest rates on all federal student loans, and alleviating the burden of current student loan debt through refinancing and better consumer protection—so that future generations of students are able to pursue their higher education goals without apprehension of skyrocketing college costs and crushing student loan debt; and
WHEREAS, additionally, the interest rate on subsidized federal student loans should be restored to its pre-July 1 rate of 3.4 percent to protect the more than 7 million undergraduates who are expected to take out one of these loans for the coming school year,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that this Board:
Section 1. Urges the U.S. Congress and U.S. Department of Education to reform the current student loan system, through stemming the rising costs of college, reducing the interest rates on all federal student loans, and alleviating the burden of current student loan debt through refinancing and better consumer protection.
Section 2. Urges the U.S. Congress to restore the 3.4 percent interest rate on subsidized federal student loans.
Section 3. Directs the Clerk of the Board to transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the members of the Florida Congressional Delegation and the U.S. Secretary of Education.
Section 4. Directs the County’s federal lobbyists to advocate for the actions set forth in Sections 1 and 2 above, and authorizes and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to amend the 2013 Federal Legislative Package to include this item and to include this item in the 2014 Federal Legislative Package when it is presented to the Board.



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