DAILY HERALD: House panel’s spending plan revives clash over student debt

Career College Central Summary:

  • A spending plan released by a House committee Tuesday would prevent the Obama administration from moving forward with new regulations limiting the amount of debt students can carry in career-training programs, two weeks before the rules take effect.
  • For nearly six years, administration officials have fought to institute regulations to protect students from winding up with tens of thousands of dollars of debt for a certificate. The Education Department is on the verge of enforcing these rules for the first time at a time when some for-profit colleges, such as Corinthian and ITT, are under fire for leaving students drowning in debt.
  • But on Tuesday, the House Appropriations Committee renewed the fight by unveiling a spending bill that prohibits the Education Department from enacting the new policy. The prohibition is one of several policy provisions directed at the department, which Republicans also want to block from establishing a college rating system and dictating how states must license institutions of higher education.
  • "This legislation continues our efforts to reduce wasteful spending, to stop harmful and unnecessary regulations that kill jobs and impede economic growth, and to make wise investments in proven programs on behalf of the American taxpayer," House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers said in a statement.
  • Despite the committee's prohibition, the Education Department's rules will still take effect July 2015. But if the provision makes it into the final budget and is signed into law, the rule could be repealed in October. It is highly unlikely that the president would agree to dismantle a piece of regulation that administration has fought so hard to enact, but lawmakers' continued efforts to scuttle the rules shows the fight is far from over.

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