Student Loan Bill Tracker

With more than $1.4 trillion in outstanding student loan debt in the United States, it’s no surprise that this is an issue on many minds. It’s possible that student loan debt could contribute to our next big financial crisis.

So, what’s being done? Some members of Congress are interested in easing the student loan debt burden. Unfortunately, many of the measures are mired in committee. If you want to see movement on any of the bills listed in this student loan bill tracker, contact your own representatives and let them know what you think. You can find out who represents you — and their contact information — quickly and easily by going to GovTrack and entering your address or your state.

H.R. 4508 – Promoting Real Opportunity, Success, and Prosperity through Education Reform (PROSPER) Act of 2017

Summary: Aimed at postsecondary education to prepare students to enter the workforce with the skills they need for lifelong success. (Would get rid of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.)

Sponsors: Rep. Virgina Foxx (R-NC), Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY)

Current status: Introduced in House

H.R. 1937 – Student Security Act of 2017

Summary: To provide loan forgiveness to borrowers of Federal student loans who agree to delay eligibility to collect social security benefits.

Sponsors: Rep. Thomas A. Garrett, Jr. (R-VA)

Current status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Social Security.

S.799 – Dynamic Repayment Act of 2017

Summary: To simplify and improve the Federal student loan program through income-contingent repayment to provide stronger protections for borrowers, encourage responsible borrowing, and save money for taxpayers.

Sponsors: Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)

Current status: Referred to the Committee on Finance

S.796 – Employer Participation in Repayment Act of 2017

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend the exclusion for employer-provided education assistance to employer payments of student loans.

Sponsors: Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Sen. John Thune (R-SD), Sen. Angus King, Jr. (I-ME), Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)

Current status: Referred to the Committee on Finance

H.R.1614 – Student Loan Refinancing Act

Summary: To authorize borrowers of loans under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program to modify the interest rate of such loans to be equal to the interest rate for such loans at the time of modification.

Sponsors: Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI), Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), et al.

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce

H.R.1127 – Student Loan Fairness Act

Summary: To increase purchasing power, strengthen economic recovery, and restore fairness in financing higher education in the United States through student loan forgiveness, caps on interest rates on Federal student loans, and refinancing opportunities for private borrowers, and for other purposes.

Sponsors: Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Rep. Kathy Castor, (D-FL), Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA)

Current status: Referred to the Ways and Means Committee

H.R.795 – Employer Participation in Student Loan Assistance Act

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend the exclusion for employer-provided educational assistance to employer payments of qualified education loans.

Sponsors: Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Rep. Scott H. Peters (D-CA), Rep. Elise M. Stefanik (R-NY), Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO), et al.

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means

Student Loan Hero article: Want to Hire Millennials and Solve Student Debt? This Bill is Your Chance

H.R.615 – Student Loan Repayment Act of 2017

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to include student loan borrowers as members of targeted groups for purposes of the work opportunity credit and to provide for a credit against tax for student loan program startup costs.

Sponsors: Rep. Dennis A. Ross (R-FL)

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means

S.149 – Terrorism Survivors Student Loan Deferment Act

Summary: To amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to provide student loan deferment for victims of terrorist attacks.

Sponsors: Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)

Current status: Referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions

H.R.480 – Student Loan Opportunity Act of 2017

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow qualified scholarship funding corporations to access tax-exempt financing for alternative private student loans.

Sponsors: Rep. Bill Flores (R-TX), Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX), Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-TX), Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL)

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means

H.R.137 – Stopping Abusive Student Loan Collection Practices in Bankruptcy Act of 2017

Summary: To amend title 11 of the United States Code to stop abusive student loan collection practices in bankruptcy cases.

Sponsors: Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), Rep. Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr. (D-GA)

Current status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law

H.R.108 – Student Loan Repayment Assistance Act of 2017

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a credit for employers providing student loan payment assistance for employees.

Sponsors: Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA)

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means

H.R.1268 and S.487 – Veterinary Medical Loan Repayment Program Enhancement Act

Summary: To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide for an exclusion for assistance provided to participants in certain veterinary student loan repayment or forgiveness programs.

Sponsors: (H.R.1268) Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE), Rep. Ron Kind, (D-WI), Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-OR), Rep. Ted S. Yoho (R-FL), et al., (S.487) Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID), Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Sen. Michael F. Bennet (D-CO), et al.

Current status: (H.R.1258) Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means, (S.487) Referred to the Committee on Finance

S.749 and H.R. 1283 – Transparency in Student Lending Act

Summary: To amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require the disclosure of the annual percentage rates applicable to Federal student loans.

Sponsors (Senate): Sen. Michael B. Enzi (R-WY)

Sponsors (House): Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL)

Current status: (S.749) Referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, (H.R. 1283) Referred to Committee on Education and the Workforce

H.R.1635 – Empowering Students Through Enhanced Financial Counseling Act

Summary: To amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to update the student loan counseling requirements for borrowers. Requires annual financial aid counseling, and updates the current legislation to include online counseling.

Sponsors: Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY), Rep Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Rep. Elise M. Stefanik (R-NY), Rep. Rick W. Allen (R-GA), Rep. Katherine M. Clark (D-MA), Rep. Todd, Rokita (R-IN), and Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC).

Current status: Referred to the Committee on Education and the Workforce

H.R.283 – Student Debt Repayment Fairness Act

Summary: This bill is meant to provide a pathway for students and graduates to use penalty-free distributions from their qualified tuition programs, including 529 plans, to pay down student loans.

Sponsors: Rep. Elise M. Stefanik (R-NY)

Current status: Referred to the House Ways and Means Committee

H.R.1656 – HELP for Students and Parents Act

Summary: Designed to allow a tax exclusion for employer-provided educational assistance programs. It includes tax benefits for helping employees repay their student loans, as well as benefits for making contributions to the 529 plans of employees’ dependents.

Sponsors: Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA), Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX), Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Rep. David G. Reichert (R-WA), Rep. Scott H. Peters (D-CA)

Current status: Referred to the House Ways and Means Committee

S.268 – Investing in Student Success Act of 2017

Summary: Creates a framework for income-share agreements, in which a student and another person can enter into an arrangement that allows the other person to fund a student’s education in exchange for a percentage of income for a set period of time. This bill would allow such an arrangement to be considered a qualified education loan and not dischargeable by bankruptcy. It also exempts these agreements from state limits on interest rates and future income assignments. Payments to the student would be considered gross income for tax purposes or as assets that impact eligibility for financial aid.

Sponsors: Sen. Todd C. Young (R-IN), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR)

Current status: Referred to the Senate Finance Committee

S.434 and H.R.1145 – Housing for Homeless Students Act of 2017

Summary: This bill is designed to provide a low-income housing tax credit to and to qualify low-income building units that provide housing for homeless children, youth, or veterans who are full-time students for the credit. To qualify for the credit, the full-time student must have been a homeless child or youth during any portion of the seven-year period prior to occupying the housing unit or a homeless veteran during any portion of the five-year period prior to occupying the unit.

Sponsors (House): Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Erik Paulsen (R-MN)

Sponsors (Senate): Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)

Current status: Referred to (H.R. 1145) Ways and Means Committee,  (S. 434) Senate Finance Committee

S.848 – Reigniting Opportunity for Innovators Act

Summary: The main aim of this bill is to provide loan deferment and loan cancellation for founders and employees of small business startups.

Sponsors: Sen. Margaret Wood Hassan (D-NH)

Current status: Referred to the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee

H.R.2070 – FAFSA for All Act

Summary: Designed to provide a way for students whose parents don’t have valid Social Security numbers to access federal student aid.

Sponsors: Rep. Marc A. Veasey (D-TX), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Rep. Suzan K. DelBene (D-WA), and Rep. Raul M. Grijalva (D-AZ)

Current status: Referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce

H.R.2042 – Access to Frontline Health Care Act or 2017

Summary: Provides for the establishment of a federal loan repayment program for “frontline” healthcare providers in areas of healthcare scarcity. The Department of Health and Human Services would make student loan repayments for participants who give two years working in a frontline care scarcity area.

Sponsors: Rep. David Loebsack (D-IA)

Current status: Referred to the House Subcommittee on Health

S.889 – Net Price Calculator Improvement Act

Summary: Designed to make changes to the Net Price Calculator system that’s part of the Higher Education Act of 1965. This is supposed to give students a more accurate idea of what it will really cost them to attend college.

Sponsors: Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Sen Al Franken (D-MN)

Current status: Referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, and Pensions

H.R.2072 – FIFA Act

Summary: Changes the process of assigning identifiers to those applying for financial aid. It calls for the assignment of a personal identification number after verifying the tax identification number of an application.

Sponsors: Rep. Marc A. Veasey (D-TX)

Current status: Referred to the House Ways and Means Committee