Spanberger Announces Opposition to Legislation That Would Harm Thousands of Virginia Public Servants, Reaffirms Support for Public Service Loan Forgiveness

A Resolution Coming to the U.S. House Floor Later this Week Would Undo PSLF Relief for More than 4,800 Virginians

Congresswoman: “We Should Be Incentivizing More Americans to Pursue Public Safety, Education, & Healthcare Careers — Not Penalizing Them”

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Rep. Abigail Spanberger today announced that she will oppose H.J. Res. 45 – which would abruptly claw back benefits earned by thousands of Virginia police officers, first responders, teachers, social workers, and more.

In addition to creating additional uncertainty for millions of federal student loan borrowers across the country, this resolution could force the U.S. Department of Education to unwind Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) credits that were earned since the last extension of the payment pause. According to the Student Borrower Protection Center, nearly 5,000 Virginians reached full forgiveness of their loans through PSLF from September 2022 to January 2023 — but this resolution threatens to retroactively overturn this relief and suddenly burden these Virginians with unexpected loan payments of thousands of dollars.

“I oppose this legislation, particularly because it would weaken PSLF and jeopardize the financial security of thousands of our Commonwealth’s public servants. These Virginians are called to their professions because they care about our communities, our Commonwealth, and our country — and often, they are foregoing higher salaries in other fields to do so,” said Spanberger. “The administration’s decision to strengthen support for PSLF borrowers was the right call — and I’ve heard about the benefits of these programs directly from Virginians I represent. We should be incentivizing more Americans to pursue public safety, education, and healthcare careers — not penalizing them for their service. And we should be helping them responsibly pay off their student loans — not erasing their forgiveness options.”

Earlier this month, more than 260 organizations — including the Virginia Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers — signed a joint letter to congressional leaders highlighting the damaging effects of the resolution’s implication on the PSLF programs. These threats include jeopardizing the student loan forgiveness of nearly 160,000 public service workers across the country whose loans were canceled as part of the reformed PSLF and Income-Driven repayment plans.

H.J. Res. 45 would express congressional disapproval for the U.S. Department of Education’s “Waivers and Modifications of Federal Student Loans.” The legislation is expected to come to the U.S. House floor for a vote later this week.

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