Educators, Employers, & Workers Urge Davis/Peters Student Loan Bill to be Part of Tax Reform
U.S. Reps. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) and Scott Peters (D-Calif.) today announced that more than 100 entities representing educators, employers, and workers sent a letter to the Committee on Ways and Means urging their bipartisan student loan bill (H.R. 795) to be included as part of tax reform.
“If we do not act now to address student loan debt, I am convinced it will be this country’s next financial crisis,” said Davis. “By simply broadening the use of an existing tax code provision, we can help graduates pay down their loans more quickly and prevent loan defaults that taxpayers are often on the hook for. H.R. 795 will not solve the student debt crisis alone, but it’s a good start. As we work to reform our tax code, I encourage my colleagues on the Ways and Means Committee to keep the issue of rising student debt in mind and consider including this bipartisan bill.”
“It’s getting harder for students to afford the education they need to compete in today’s brain-powered economy,” said Peters. "Our bipartisan bill would work within the tax code and incentivize employers to help their workers pay down their student loan debt more quickly. This approach already had nearly 100 bipartisan cosponsors in Congress, and is now supported by workers, employers, students, and other groups from across the political spectrum. As Congress moves to tax reform, we must consider how to relieve the burden of student loan debt on graduates and our economy.”
H.R. 795, the Employer Participation in Student Loan Assistance Act, which has nearly 100 cosponsors, would allow employers to use a tax benefit currently available for continued education to pay down an employee’s existing student loan debt. More information here.
The following are excerpts from the letter sent to Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and Ranking Member Richard Neal (D-Mass.) below:
“…While the tax code has several incentives to help students and families afford tuition, there are few benefits that help students repay loans. When employees receive assistance to pay off their student loans, they have increased opportunities to buy a home, save for retirement, or start a new business. In turn, these contributions aid the overall health and growth of the U.S. economy…”
“…This bill would provide employers with the flexibility to offer employees assistance towards their student loans or to provide tuition assistance towards continuing education…”
“…This benefit is an important tool for employers to attract and retain top talent in order to build a skilled workforce. Sec. 127 plays a critical role in maintaining U.S. competitiveness and could, if strengthened, become the premier employee benefit for tuition assistance and loan repayments among employers…”
“…Due to the broad bipartisan support and nearly 100 cosponsors of H.R. 795, we urge Congress to include this bill in the upcoming tax reform package…”