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Yes or No?
2022-08-24

            Should student debt be cancelled?

            In the wake of an announcement that President Biden is expected to announce a plan to cancel up to $10,000 per borrower for student loan debt, on those who make less than $125,000 per year, positions are being taken.

            And, questions are being asked.

            Is it fair to the students and others who have already paid off their loan?  What is the effect on taxpayers if the debt forgiveness is granted?  Is it being done now to affect the upcoming November General Election?  If granted now, should colleges and universities be encouraged to dip into their endowment funds to lower the cost of a college education?  Will this help or hurt our current state of the economy and/or budget deficits?  Is the money to pay off the debts coming from current funds or future obligations?

            I am sure you have more and I am hoping that all will be answered before a stroke of the pen makes it final.

            It's fair to ask questions, not make accusations.  It is also fair to have transparency and completeness in the answers.

            Since the onset of the Covid-19 Pandemic, a pause has been in place.  President Trump ordered a halt to collections in March of 2020.  That pause is due to expire at the end of August.

            Seek out reliable sources when making decisions.

            Regarding the student debt question, an analysis by the Penn Wharton Budget Model estimating that the cancellation would cost the federal government $329.7 billion over the next 10 years.  And, with up to 73% of the cancellations assisting households in the top 60% of earners in the US.

            Using that analysis, the National Taxpayers Union Foundation worked out the average cost of Biden's announcement to $2,085.59 per taxpayer.  They also posted on their website that the "$329 billion cost of student debt cancellation would be $329 billion previously borrowed from the federal government and not returning to the Treasury. Policymakers will need to make up for that gap in the future with government spending cuts, tax increases, more borrowing, or some combination thereof."

            An official of the White House was recently quoted as saying, "As a reminder, no one with a federally held loan has had to pay a single dime in student loans since President Biden took office, and this Administration has already canceled about $32 billion in debt for more than 1.6 million Americans - more than any Administration in history."

            Hearing that and checking the U.S. Department of Education's studentaid.gov, website I found there are several current conditions where you can have your student debt forgiven in part or completely.

            They include: If you are employed by a government or not-for-profit organization; if you teach full-time for five complete and consecutive academic years in a low-income elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency; if your school closes while you're enrolled or soon after you withdraw; if you're totally and permanently disabled; death of the borrower or of the student; in some cases you can have your federal student loan discharged after declaring bankruptcy (but that is not automatic); and several other reasons.

            The process is alredy in place for borrowers seeking help.  So, is asking borrowers to apply for debt forgiveness under the conditions currently in effect by the U.S. government fairer than blanket forgiveness? 

            Yes or no?


 

 

 

 

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