It’s safe to say that 2016 is the year when skyrocketing education costs and a record $1.3 trillion in outstanding student debt have taken center stage among the most urgent issues facing our nation. In his final State of the Union Address, President Obama reiterated his belief that higher education needs to be made more affordable for all Americans, and that we need to find ways to reduce and help manage student debt.  He stated that too many young graduates are held back by having to start their adult lives “stuck in the red.” 

The good news is that Americans aren’t going to have to wait until after the presidential election to see student loan reform begin to be enacted by our leaders in Washington.  In October of last year, Rep. Rodney Davis of Illinois 13th District sponsored H.R. 3861, The Employer Participation in Student Loan Assistance Act. Along with its companion bill sponsored by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), this bill would extend the tax exclusion that currently applies to employer-provided tuition assistance – up to $5,250 per year – to include employer contributions to employee’s student loan repayment.  

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