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Current Legislative Priorities
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Legislative Priorities for the 115th Congress (2017-2018)

NCHER believes the federal government plays an important role in assisting students, borrowers, and families in accessing and completing postsecondary education, leading to productive engagement in the workforce. As the nation’s largest higher education finance trade association, NCHER and its members have the requisite expertise to help shape policies governing federal and private student aid programs on behalf of students and families. As higher education policy moves forward during the second half of the 115th Congress, NCHER urges action on the following legislative priorities:


Promoting Tax-Exempt Financing of Education Loans to Reduce Costs for Students and Families

  • Preserve tax-exempt financing of education loans as part of any tax reform package.
  • Support H.R. 480, the “Student Loan Opportunity Act,” allowing 150(d) organizations to access tax-exempt financing for private education loans.
  • Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), or excluding tax-exempt student loan-based securities from the AMT.
  • Clarify tax-exempt bonds used to make private loans that refinance existing tax-exempt private loans are not advance refunding bonds.


Using Technology to Help Struggling Borrowers

  • Oppose the “HANG UP Act."
  • Urge the FCC to reconsider its final TCPA rules.


Reducing Burdensome Federal Regulations that Create Barriers to Assisting Student and Parent Borrowers

  • Congress expand its current list of burdensome regulations by encouraging a more comprehensive compilation of unnecessary regulations and guidance in order to reduce regulatory burdens that stifle innovation and create barriers to assisting students, borrowers, and parents

Expanding Access to Loan Rehabilitation

  • Expand access to loan rehabilitation.
  • Allow access to the NDNH.
  • Improve Access to NSLDS.

Improving Federal Student Aid by Streamlining Student Loan Repayment and Preventing Overborrowing

  • Simplify and streamline the myriad of student loan repayment plans.
  • Improve and automate the annual recertification process for borrowers participating in income-driven repayment plans.
  • Dramatically reduce the number of questions on the FAFSA.
  • Provide authority to financial aid administrators to lower annual and aggregate student loan limits.
  • Consider capping the amount parents can borrow under the PLUS program.

Assisting Students and Families in Making Smart Postsecondary Education Decisions

  • Provide pre-college, in-school, and post-college financial education and debt management services to students, borrowers, and families to help them make knowledgeable decisions.
  • Strengthen existing entrance and exit counseling requirements.
  • Promote the use of 529 Plans.

Providing for an Orderly Wind‐Down of the Federal Guaranteed Student Loan Program

  • Authorize the payment of AMF through 2026.
  • Provide just-in-time reinsurance payments to facilitate cash flow into the Federal Fund.
  • Remove the 45 percent cap on Federal Direct Consolidation Loans.
  • Develop a specific process for those guaranty agencies interested in relinquishing their FFELP portfolios.

Promoting Better Loan Servicing for Student and Parent Borrowers

  • Review the current procurement to identify necessary changes to the policies and approaches that will result in meaningful and sustainable improvements to federal student loan servicing.
  • Promote the use of state and nonprofit organizations with expertise in helping student and parent borrowers.
  • Ensure there are common performance metrics across all servicers.
  • Ensure federal law and contractual requirements preempt state and local rules that impact federal student loan servicing and collections.

Promoting the Availability of Private Education Loans

  • Mandate that Direct Loan borrowers receive accurate disclosure of the cost of their loans.
  • Permit private education loan lenders to remove the default record upon the rehabilitation of a private education loan.

Leveraging Private Sector Participation in the Federal Student Loan Program to Protect Taxpayers and Assist Students and Families

  • Require federal agencies to use Fair-Value Accounting when measuring the true costs of federal credit programs.
  • Enhance the role of private capital and local expertise in financing the cost of college and administering student loans.
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