University City Newsletter July/August 2014 - http://www.universitycitynews.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/July-Aug-2014-newsletter.pdf
Access to an affordable college education for lower and middle income families has long been an essential part of the American story, including my own. I would not have been able to afford a college education had I not taken out loans and done work-study programs. As our economy continues to rebound from the worst recession since the great depression, we need to make higher education more affordable, not less.
With over two-thirds of American college students graduating with massive student loan debt, it’s crucial that Congress reaffirm our country’s commitment to affordable higher education. More and more studies are concluding that student loan debt is preventing consumers from making major purchases like homes and new cars, hurting economic growth.
That’s why I introduced the Federal Student Loan Refinancing Act last month, a bill that would automatically refinance every federal student loan currently above 4 percent down to that level. Doing this would bring interest rates much closer to the current 30-year mortgage rate and save the average California borrower nearly $10,000 over the 20-year life of the loan — that’s income that can be used on other purchases to create a positive ripple effect on the economy, buy a home, or save for retirement. This legislation would give students flexibility when they graduate and provide some necessary, and welcome, relief to families that are struggling to advance themselves.