WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn today issued the following statement on the announcement of President Joe Biden’s intent to provide $20,000 in student loan debt relief for borrowers with Pell grants and $10,000 for those without Pell grants who make under $125,000 annually and extend the federal student loan payment pause through December 31, 2022.
“Today is a life-changing day for the more than 731,000 South Carolinians with federal student loan debt. President Biden is keeping his promise to help alleviate the crushing burden of student loan debt and his actions today will result in real relief for many borrowers.
“Up to $20,000 in federal student loan debt cancellation to Pell Grant recipients and up to $10,000 in federal student loan debt cancellation for non-Pell Grant recipients are significant steps in and of themselves, but those with remaining balances will also see their future payments decrease significantly as a result of President Biden’s action with income-based repayment plan payments cut in half.
“Borrowers of color will benefit significantly because, on average, they borrow more to attend college and earn less after graduation compared to white students. This is an important step to help address the racial wealth gap and economic inequities that continue to plague this country.
“This comes on the heels of President Biden expanding access to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. That action last October has resulted in 175,000 borrowers, currently working in public sector jobs like teaching and policing, realizing $10 billion in debt relief. Anyone eligible for this program should apply by the October 31 deadline this year.
“I am pleased by the additional actions announced today and will continue working with the Biden-Harris Administration to make higher education accessible and affordable for all by lowering the cost of higher education, increasing federal need-based aid, like the Pell Grant, and providing the tools necessary for students to complete their post-secondary education.”