Republicans Kill Bipartisan Student Debt Relief Proposal

Today, in the House Committee in Higher Education Policy and Finance, Republican members of the committee voted down a student debt relief proposal authored by Rep. Jon Applebaum (DFL-Minnetonka) that would have provided significant debt relief to Minnesotans across the state. HF 1716 would provide relief of up to $5,000 per year in the form of a refundable tax credit on student loan debt. Rep. Applebaum’s bill represented significant steps in making higher education more affordable and accessible to Minnesotans. The bill is coauthored by Rep. Bud Nornes (R-Fergus Falls) the Chair of the Higher Education Policy and Finance Committee, which voted it down.

Rep. Applebaum released the following statement:

“Minnesota college students and graduates across our state are struggling under a mountain of debt.  It’s an issue that demands our attention at the state legislature.  I am disappointed that my Republicans colleagues chose to vote down the bill and shut down the conversation about how best to provide relief to all Minnesotans who are struggling with significant college debt.

This is a matter of priorities. And with a $1.9 billion surplus it would be extremely unfortunate if we weren’t able to make serious progress on college affordability on behalf of Minnesota college students and graduates.”