frowning piggy bank with graduation cap, on cash
Share, email, print, bookmark SOURCE reports.

[broadstreet zone=”53230″]

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) led 16 senators in sending a letter to the Chair and Ranking Member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies requesting the committee provide $2.7 billion in Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 to fund the Office of Federal Student Aid, consistent with the President’s budget.

This funding is particularly important given FSA’s budget for FY 2023 was  flat-funded from the previous year, undermining the office’s ability to implement critical programs that provide eligible students with resources to pursue higher education and training programs and receive relief from crushing student debt burdens.

“FSA’s responsibilities have increased to protect students and borrowers, but its federal funding has remained stagnant. The lack of adequate resources creates more barriers for students to continue their education,” wrote the senators. “We believe this funding request is needed to provide FSA with the resources it needs to fulfill its goal of ensuring that all eligible students and families can access federal student grants, loans, and work-study funds to pursue education and training beyond high school.”

Senator Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts) also signed the letter.

[broadstreet zone=”54526″]

FSA is the largest provider of student financial aid in the nation, overseeing a $1.6 trillion program that serves nearly 44 million people, and is currently expected to make necessary improvements to loan servicing.

Additional funding is needed to make major improvements to student loan servicing, including a Congressionally mandated overhaul of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), that expands access to federal aid and addresses longstanding concerns over the complexity of the application process, ensuring more students have access to federal financial aid. 

Last year’s flat funding of FSA could jeopardize the implementation of significant reforms such as making long-overdue improvements to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, increasing accountability efforts to root out predatory programs, introducing a new and transformative income-driven repayment plan (IDR), completing a review of millions of borrower records to determine if borrowers have been improperly denied relief due to longstanding flaws of the IDR program, and implementing President Biden’s historic student debt cancellation plan.

[broadstreet zone=”59947″]

Failing to fully fund FSA could lead to severe implementation delays and a lack of resources to support borrowers transition back to repayment. 

Senators Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Peter Welch (D-Vt.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), and Alex Padilla (D-Calif.) joined Senator Warren on the letter. 

Read text of the Letter here

[broadstreet zone=”59984″]

[broadstreet zone=”59982″]

By editor

Susan Petroni is the former editor for SOURCE. She is the founder of the former news site, which as of May 1, 2023, is now a self-publishing community bulletin board. The website no longer has a journalist but a webmaster.