Author Archive

September 2, 2014 · by Wes · Spark Notes

Senate HELP Committee Chairman Tom Harkin recently released a Higher Education Act reauthorization discussion draft, the Higher Education Affordability Act (HEAA). Harkin asked for comments from interested parties. In COHEAO’s response, President Maria Livolsi noted the Federal Campus-Based programs align with Chairman Harkin and the Committee’s goals with HEA reauthorization–increasing affordability and helping struggling borrowers,…

August 12, 2014 · by Wes · Spark Notes

Congratulations to two COHEAO members, Joe Weglarz of Marist College and Keith Fitzsimmons of the University of Kansas Medical Center. for winning our most recent drawing for free COHEAO webinars. Joe and Keith may use their free webinar certificate during the numerous online events we host throughout the year. Their names were drawn at random…

Although Lawsuits Grab Headlines, National News Stories Highlight Key Elements of Perkins Program

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February 7, 2013 · by Wes · Spark Notes

Prepared by:  Harrison Wadsworth (hwadsworth@wpllc.net) Perkins Loans have been in the news this week, with Bloomberg News Service, National Public Radio and Bloomberg TV all running pieces on colleges suing their former students to collect defaulted Perkins Loans.  This began with the Bloomberg News Service Article, for which the reporter who wrote the article interviewed…

Senator Franken Introduces “The Arbitration Fairness for Students Act”

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October 4, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

Just before Congress departed for recess, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) introduced the “Arbitration Fairness for Students Act,” S. 3557.  The bill would prohibit the use of mandatory arbitration requirements in required enrollment contracts.   The bill was referred to the Senate HELP Committee and is extremely unlikely to receive consideration in the 112th Congress, but it…

August 16, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

NerdWallet (www.nerdwallet.com), a new website which provides consumer finance comparison tools and personal finance information has recently been exploring the issue of the income-based repayment (IBR) plan in the federal student loan programs. As part of these efforts, NerdWallet interviewed Wes Huffman  of Washington Partners, who serves as Legislative Director for COHEAO, for his thoughts…

Congress Passes 3.4 Percent Subsidized Stafford Loan Interest Rate Extension—Other Changes for Federal Student Loans Set for July 1

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July 2, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

June 29, 2012 Prepared by: Wes Huffman (whuffman@wpllc.net) Before departing for the July 4 recess, Congress passed the conference report to accompany the ''Temporary Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012,” which included provisions to extend the 3.4 percent interest rate on subsidized Stafford Loans for one year.  The measure passed the House 353-72 and the…

Senate Labor-HHS-Education Subcommittee Approves FY2013 Spending Measure

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June 14, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

Prepared by: Wes Huffman (whuffman@wpllc.net) The Senate Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee approved the FY2013 spending bill governing the Department of Education yesterday on a party line vote of 10-7. The full Senate Appropriations Committee is expected to approve the measure tomorrow, again on a party line. Action by the entire Senate and final Congressional action is…

Perkins Loan Call to Action: Contact Your Senators and Representatives in Support of Perkins Appropriations

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May 29, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

COHEAO is encouraging all members to contact their Representatives and Senators to support funding for the Perkins Loan Program. Though the program has not received any funding in the past few years, FY2013 may present an opportunity for appropriations, particularly in terms of cancellations, so it is critical for COHEAO members to participate in these…

CRS Report on Subsidized Stafford Student Loans

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May 9, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

With Subsidized Stafford Loans dominating the headlines and the political rhetoric heating up, we thought many COHEAO members may like to review objective information on the topic. Included with this COHEAO Spark is a report from the Congressional Research Service, “Interest Rates on Subsidized Loans to Undergraduate Students.”

2010-2011 Orange Book Released-National Perkins Loan Default Rate Drops to 8.32%

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May 2, 2012 · by Wes · Spark Notes

The Department of Education posted the Federal Perkins Loan Program Status of Default as of June 30, 2011, known as the Orange Book. The national Perkins Loan default rate for the 2010-2011 award year is 8.32 percent, a decrease from 10.08 percent in the 2009-2010 award year and 10.04 percent in the 2008-2009 award year….

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