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Congressman Tim Ryan

Representing the 13th District of Ohio

Congressman Tim Ryan Endorses Tuition-Free and Debt-Free College

July 25, 2018
Press Release

Washington, DC — Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) today announced his support for three sweeping pieces of legislation that would make a college education tuition-free and debt-free. Those bills are the College For All Act, the Debt-Free College Partnerships Act, and the Aim Higher Act.

“No matter if it’s a two year degree, a four year degree, or a technical certificate program, the success of the United States relies on our citizens having access to post-high school training and education. Education is critical to personal flourishing as well as keeping the American workforce competitive in an increasingly globalized economy,” said Rep. Ryan. “College should not only be for the privileged few. It is a benefit for all, and must be seen that way. No individual or family should be burdened with crushing debt that will stifle opportunity when the whole point of attending college is to grow through new opportunities. All three of these bills help families get ahead by making an investment in them and their future. We’re all in this together.”

Congressman Ryan signed on as cosponsor of the following three bills this week:

The College for All Act

  • Eliminates tuition and fees at public four-year colleges and universities for those making up to $125,000 and makes community college tuition- and fee-free for all
  • Cuts Student loan interest rates in half
  • Allows Americans to re-finance student loans at the lowest possible interest rates
  • Prevents the federal government from profiting off of the student loan programs
  • Paid for by a tax on Wall Street speculation
  • Provides funding to eliminate equity gaps in higher education attainment

The Debt-Free College Partnerships Act

  • Creates a voluntary state-federal partnership to increase investment in public higher education and enable students to attend public college debt-free
  • Under the partnership, states would receive an award from the federal government that matches states’ higher education appropriations 
  • States that participate would commit to providing need-based grants to cover students’ cost of attendance, with a goal of achieving debt-free college for all in-state students within five years of joining the partnership
  • States are allowed to spend up to 10% of their partnership award to grow the capacity of their public institutions, support degree completion programs, and make other investments in higher education.

The Aim Higher Act

  • Makes college more affordable by investing in federal student aid and helps states make public college tuition more affordable in the future by incentivizing states to reinvest in higher education
  • Cracks down on predatory for-profit institutions that target students and veterans with expensive, low-quality programs,
  • Protects and expands the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, which is eliminated in the GOP PROSPER Act, and makes student loans simpler and easier to repay
  • Provides students the tools they need to graduate on time with a quality degree
  • Invests in teachers and strengthens training for teachers and school leaders to improve the quality of our schools