President's Budget + House Plan Take Aim at Neediest College Students | Reminder: Tell Congress to #DefendCFPB, More from TICAS

President's Budget and House Plan Take Aim at America’s Neediest College Students
Why would anyone want to weaken the CFPB? Take Action Now to #DefendCFPB!
Questions and Concerns about California Assembly’s “Degrees Not Debt Scholarship” Proposal"
What College Costs for Low-Income Californians
New Report Finds Success Rises with Financial Aid for Neediest Community College Students 
What Does a Failing Career Education Program Look Like?
Progress and Bipartisan Agreement on Helping Keep Student Loan Payments Affordable


President's Budget and House Plan Take Aim at America’s Neediest College Students

Released yesterday, President Trump’s budget for FY2018 would increase the cost of college for millions of Americans struggling to pay for education and training. It raids $3.9 billion from discretionary Pell Grant funding instead of seizing the opportunity to use existing program funds to restore access to grants year round and increase the maximum award, which covers the lowest share of the cost of attending a four-year public college in over 40 years. The $3.9 billion raid will increase pressure to cut Pell Grant amounts and eligibility for the over 7.5 million low- and moderate-income students who rely on Pell Grants each year. 

And rather than pushing back and committing to making college more affordable, House Republicans have already made clear their plan to eliminate $65 billion in mandatory Pell Grant funding over 10 years, which would have a devastating impact on students and our workforce. In FY2018 alone, the House plan would erase $5.9 billion in mandatory Pell Grant funding—the equivalent of eliminating grants for 1 in 5 recipients (1.6 million students).

Read our statement on the President’s FY18 budget
Read our blog post on the House plan

 

Double Down on Your Effort to #DefendCFPB!

Thank you for joining nearly 1,000 TICAS supporters around the country who recently sent emails Congress to oppose efforts to weaken the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Unfortunately, the CFPB is still under attack and needs your help! Spread the word by forwarding this email to friends and calling your Members of Congress!

As noted in the New York Times, special interests are targeting the CFPB because it's doing its job “protecting consumers from financial miscreants” – including some in the student loan industry.

As you know, the CFPB has been an immensely effective advocate for students and borrowers. Act now to make sure your voice is heard loud and clear!

 

Why would anyone want to weaken the CFPB? Take Action Now to #DefendCFPB!

As noted in a recent New York Times article on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), special interests are targeting the federal agency because it's doing its job “protecting consumers from financial miscreants” – including some in the student loan industry. The CFPB has been an immensely effective advocate for students and borrowers, but now its independence and authority are under threat from the White House and Congress. Last month we asked you to write your members of Congress and urge them to #DefendCFPB. There’s still time to act! Tell Congress that you support the CFPB for standing up for folks like you.

Make your voice heard: urge Congress to oppose efforts to weaken the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Send a letter
Call Your Members of Congress

 


Questions and Concerns about California Assembly’s “Degrees Not Debt Scholarship” Proposal

Earlier this week, a $1.5 billion “Degrees Not Debt Scholarship” proposal was introduced in the California Assembly. While we applaud the desire to dedicate substantial new resources towards financial aid, our latest blog post raises questions and concerns about the proposal  and explains why it won’t solve California’s major problems with college affordability, debt, and completion.

Read the blog


What College Costs for Low-Income Californians

Our new analysis of nine California regions finds that low-income students have to spend more – sometimes several thousands of dollars more – to attend a community college than a public 4-year university.  Why? Even though California’s community colleges have long been tuition-free for all students with financial need, their students get much less aid than four-year college students to help cover essential college costs beyond tuition, including textbooks, transportation, housing, and food.  TICAS vice president Debbie Cochrane highlighted these findings when she was invited to provide expert testimony at a state legislative hearing on college affordability

Read the analysis


New Report Finds Success Rises with Financial Aid for Neediest Community College Students

New research from TICAS and the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT), in collaboration with the California Community Colleges’ Chancellors Office (CCCCO), takes a unique look at federal and state financial aid, academic preparation, and college transfer and completion for students across California’s 113 community colleges. Aiding Success: The Role of Federal and State Financial Aid in Supporting California Community College Students documents that student success increases with more financial aid for the lowest income students.

The report finds a combination of federal, state, and institutional aid work together to best support low-income students, and underscores the critical role that financial aid plays in students’ success. Aiding Success includes federal, state, and college-level policy recommendations to better support community college students’ abilities to persist and complete degrees or certificates, or to transfer to four-year institutions.

Read the report
 

What Does a Failing Career Education Program Look Like?

Following a troubling announcement from the U.S. Department of Education that it’s giving schools about three additional months to comply with two requirements under the gainful employment regulation, a new TICAS blog post has specific examples of what failing career education programs look like and discusses the value of the gainful employment rule.

Read the blog post


Progress and Bipartisan Agreement on Helping Keep Student Loan Payments Affordable

Borrowers are now one step closer to having a more streamlined process to keep their federal student loan payments affordable. Currently, borrowers struggling with payments can enter plans that base monthly payments on their income, but they are required to update their income information every year. More than half of borrowers miss the annual deadline and the consequences can be severe – unaffordable spikes in monthly payment amounts that increase their risk of delinquency and default, as well as interest capitalization that can add substantial costs.

TICAS and bipartisan groups of lawmakers in both the House and the Senate have called for automating the annual recertification process (what is commonly known as “multi-year consent”) to reduce the likelihood that borrowers end up in delinquency or default. In response, the U.S. Departments of Treasury and Education recently announced an agreement to let borrowers give permission for their annual income to be updated automatically using their existing tax data.

Read more