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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: December 19, 2014 01:27 PM
From: Senator John N. Wozniak
To: All Senate members
Subject: PA Educated and Employed Loan Forgiveness Program
In the near future, I plan to introduce the Pennsylvania Educated and Employed Loan Forgiveness Program. This bill will establish a $10,000,000 fund to be appropriated to and administered by the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).

The program is designed to encourage eligible students who graduate from a State System of Higher Education or community college to stay and work in PA. An eligible student is one who holds an undergraduate degree from a qualifying institution of higher learning (PASSHE School or community college), continuously resides and is employed in this Commonwealth for no less than five consecutive years upon graduation, and has a family income less than $70,000 annually. PHEAA will oversee the vetting process to ensure all applicants have met the eligibility requirements.

Provided these eligibility requirements are met, PHEAA may forgive up to 100% of the individual’s loan, not to exceed $15,000. That is to say, if the loan amount is greater than $15,000 the individual will still be responsible for paying the difference. Loan forgiveness repayments received by a student shall not be considered taxable income for purposes of the Tax Reform Code of 1971.

Pennsylvania has some of the highest costs for public, private and community college education in the nation. Pennsylvania funds public higher education at approximately 50 percent of the national average. In Pennsylvania, an estimated 71 percent of students graduate with a debt, with the average of $32,258 per student.

This bill is part of the multi-faceted College Access Plan (CAP). CAP is a comprehensive package of legislation designed to improve student access to higher education, reduce student debt and jump-start Pennsylvania's economy.

Please join me in sponsoring this bill. If you any questions, please contact Josh Myers of my staff at 787-5400 or by email to jmyers@pasenate.com. Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as SB100