Paying for college is a hard enough task as it is. Many low and moderate-income students rely on federally subsidized Stafford loans with a lower interest rate to finance their education.
The interest rate of these loans is currently 3.4 percent, but if Congress doesn’t pass legislation by July 1, the interest rate on need-based loans would double to 6.8 percent. According to the Florida Public Interest Research Group, the increase in the student loan interest rate would cost Florida students $443 million per year. This would add approximately $1,000 per year for each student in addition to the original loan amount,and adds up to a total of $4,000 for a four-year education.
In 2010, student-loan debt surpassed credit-card debt for the first time. The reliance on government-funded loans to finance college education is becoming a greater concern for households. The interest rate hike would only create a bigger burden.
Proving bipartisanship can still be obtained. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has endorsed President Obama’s plan to prevent the interest rate on these loans from doubling. However, students need to let their Congressional representatives know where they stand on the issue.
Floridians can contact Senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio or sign many petitions currently circulating online.