News Column

Udall Calls on Congress to Pass Common-Sense Student Loan Refinancing Bill, Restore Opportunity for Thousands of Coloradans

June 10, 2014



WASHINGTON, June 10 -- The office of Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., issued the following news release:

Mark Udall, who has fought to keep education affordable and accessible for all Coloradans, urged Congress to pass his legislation that would help many of the 760,000 Coloradans who have outstanding federal loans, according to U.S. Department of Education estimates. The Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, which Udall has been proud to champion, is expected to come up for a vote in the U.S. Senate this week.

"Last summer, Congress came together to lower student-loan interest rates for new borrowers, shaving off thousands of dollars from the cost of attending college. Now it's time to come together again and give all past and present college students relief through today's low rates," Udall said. "This common-sense plan will save consumers money and restore opportunity for hundreds of thousands of Coloradans, at no cost to taxpayers. We can't let debt and high interest rates keep holding our grads back."

Udall held a press conference at the U.S. Capitol today to highlight how this common-sense bill would restore opportunity for thousands of Coloradans with student loan debt and strengthen our state's economy.

The Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act would allow all students with Stafford Loans, Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, Federal PLUS Loans and Federal Consolidation Loans to refinance at this year's low rates: 3.86 percent for undergraduates and 5.41 percent for graduate students. The bill also would allow students in good standing the option of refinancing their high-interest private student loans down to the rates offered to new federal student borrowers under the Federal Direct Loan Program.

The average student loan debt for a student in Colorado is $24,540, with more than half of Coloradan college students carrying some amount of debt.

Udall has been a strong advocate of keeping college affordable and within reach for all Coloradans. He led the effort last year to keep Stafford student loan interest rates from doubling. He also fought to ensure immigrants have access to in-state tuition, supporting Colorado's ASSET bill and the federal DREAM Act.

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