U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) today made the following statement after voting in favor of a bill tying federal student loan interest rates to the free market and giving certainty to students planning for their future. The Smarter Solutions for Students Act ties all federal student loans, except for the Perkins loan, to the 10-year Treasury note, plus 2.5% for Stafford loans and additional 4.5% for the PLUS loans.
"As with all Americans, students planning for their future deserve the financial certainty necessary to plan over the long term. The Smarter Solutions for Students Act provides a long term solution for students worrying about the upcoming July interest rate hike and whether Congress can get its act together each year."
"As a former Florida certified teacher, I know the importance of making sure our children have access to a quality education. Last year, Congress provided a one-year reprieve from the student loan issue with the expectation that we would work toward a permanent solution. I applaud the hard work of the Education and Workforce Committee to provide students with a responsible and commonsense approach to the problem. I am pleased to vote in favor of a long term solution and look forward to a student loan system that is both predictable and affordable for students, borrowers, and taxpayers.
"It was also important to vote in favor of Congressman Messer's bill, the Improving Postsecondary Education Data for Students Act. This legislation will direct the Department of Education to explore opportunities to enhance higher education transparency. Choosing a college is a very important undertaking in the lives of Americans and we need to ensure that students and families have the facts they need to make a well-informed decision."