U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) released the following statement urging Washington Republicans to work with Democrats and President Obama to invest in America's future by preventing an increase in the cost of student loans. Today, President Obama is speaking on college campuses in North Carolina and at the University of Colorado in Boulder highlighting the importance of maintaining the lower student loan interest rates.
"We shouldn't build more hurdles for young people, like my constituent from Lakewood above, to get the education or the skills needed to succeed. Congress should take immediate steps to keep students in the classroom and interest rates low," said Perlmutter. "The current lower student loan rate is making college more affordable for students by providing more opportunities to fund higher education. I talk all the time with families and students from across the district with concerns about the rising costs of higher education. Students should not be forced to forgo an education because of a lack of funding. I want to put Coloradans and Americans back to work by providing them the tools for success, and higher education is a tool for our children's and our country's future, and critical for our ability to compete in the global economy."
If Congress doesn't act, more than 7 million students will incur an additional $6.3 billion in repayment costs for the 2012 -- 2013 academic school year. Every additional year Congress doesn't act, student loans will be $1,000 more expensive for each student borrower.
Through the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007, interest rates on need-based federal student loans were halved to 3.4 percent -- making these loans more affordable for low- and middle-income students. If Congress doesn't act before July, the rate will jump back up to 6.8 percent, making it much more difficult for many American students and their families to afford a college education.