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President Signs Democrats' Financial Aid Bill into Law

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Location: Washington, DC


President Signs Democrats' Financial Aid Bill into Law

Represents the Single Largest Investment in Higher Ed Since GI Bill

Washington, Sep 27 -

Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL), a member of the House Education and Labor Committee, today commended President Bush for signing the historic College Cost Reduction and Access Act. This legislation represents the single largest investment in financial aid since the 1944 GI bill. Democrats campaigned on the issue of making college more affordable.

The College Cost Reduction Act and Access Act would make need-based student loans more easily accessible and provide for additional mandatory funding for the Pell Grant scholarship by at least $1090 over the next five years, benefiting nearly 230,000 students in Illinois, including over 22,000 newly eligible beneficiaries. Illinois students and their families will receive more than $1.2 billion over five years in the form of student loans and Pell Grants as a result of this legislation.

The bill includes a provision to cut the interest rate on subsidized student loans in half over the next five years—-from 6.8% to 3.4%, benefiting 128,765 student borrowers in Illinois. Once fully phased in, it would save the average four-year college student (who begins school in 2011) $4510 over the life of his or her loan.

Hare said he was proud to play a role in crafting this legislation as a member of the House Education and Labor Committee. "In America, you should not have to be rich to go to college," Hare said. "By allowing all qualified students to pursue their dreams—regardless of family income—this bill ensures that future generations will be able to compete and prosper."

On October 8, Hare will visit three 17th District colleges—Augustana, Knox, and Monmouth—to celebrate this achievement.


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