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|Durbin Says More Money Should Be Available for Pell Grants
|Illinois college students who qualify for the Pell Grant can expect more money this year. Students will also see friendlier loan repayment terms, thanks to an overhaul of the nation's 45-year-old student loan program.
Speaking to students at Roosevelt University in Chicago, U.S. Sen. Durbin (D-Ill.) said the provisions, which were included in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation bill, force commercial banks out of the business of administering federally guaranteed student loans. Durbin says cutting out the middlemen will save money for students. Students will now have to secure loans through the federal Direct Loan program.
The maximum annual Pell Grant scholarship will increase to $5,500 this year and to $5,975 by 2017. Durbin says the number of Pell Grants available is going up as well. There are roughly 265,000 Illinois college students who receive the grant now. The bill secures enough money to add another 23,720 grants.
The student loan reform bill includes:
* $36 billion over 10 years for Pell Grants
* Borrowers can cap monthly student loan payments at 10 percent of their discretionary income
* Public service workers, such as teachers, nurses and those in the military will see any remaining debt forgiven after 10 years
* $2 billion for a competitive grant program for community colleges to develop and improve educational or career training programs
* $2.55 billion ($39 million in Illinois ) to historically black colleges and universities and minority-serving institutions
* $750 million ($23 million in Illinois ) for College Access Challenge Grants.
(Illinois Radio Network)
|03 30 10 by Newsroom
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