House Republicans Seek to End Student Debt Relief For Grads Who Enter Public Service

House Republicans have introduced a bill that would end a loan forgiveness program for students who enter public service after they graduate.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that the GOP’s bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act does away with the program, under which graduates who work for certain employers in the public service field can have their debt erased after making payments on it for a period of 10 years. The graduates must work in government or for certain nonprofits, as well as volunteer service programs like the Peace Corps or AmeriCorps.

The bill was introduced by

This isn’t the first time that the student debt forgiveness program has been targeted by Republicans this year.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ Departmental budget also contained a proposal to do away with the program. DeVos has considered getting rid of other student-debt relief programs within the government, including one Obama-era program that allowed students who were defrauded by for-profit colleges with predatory schemes to be entitled to debt forgiveness.

DeVos had indicated that the defrauded students would only be entitled to partial loan relief.

The GOP has set its sights on punishing students this year, as the House version of the Republican tax plan that has been rushed through Congress scrapped several tax deductions for college students and graduates with loans and ended the student loan debt write off — meaning that students who benefit from tuition waivers must now count that money as income, even if they never actually see it in their own coffers.