Legislative Activity

Student Loan Interest Rates

As the Senate continues consideration of the Farm Bill, there may be discussion on an amendment (S.A. 976) that would extend the 3.4 percent fixed student loan interest rate for two years, although consideration of this issue will likely take place separate from the Farm Bill. This week, the Senate will likely vote on two student loan interest rate proposals. The first bill (identical to the Farm Bill amendment) would freeze the 3.4 percent student loan interest rate for two years in order to force Congress to address the issue during the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. The second bill is the House-passed student loan interest rate bill that would create a market-based variable interest rate and peg it to the 10-year Treasury note. To pass, each bill will likely require a 60-vote threshold. However, given the stark differences in addressing this issue, both bills will likely fail, which would place pressure on the Senators to work on a bipartisan solution before the July 1 deadline.

This Week’s Hearing:

  • Tuesday, June 4: The House Science, Space and Technology Committee will hold a hearing titled “STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Education: The Administration’s Proposed Re-Organization.” Department officials, including John Holdren, the director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, will testify about the Administration’s proposed reorganization and consolidation of STEM education programs in the FY 2014 Budget.