Hundreds of thousands of borrowers in CT would have been eligible for student loan forgiveness plan

Shortly after many applications for the loan forgiveness program, many lawsuits were filed.
Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 11:59 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 27, 2023 at 5:22 PM EST
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(WFSB) - Borrowers in Connecticut who would have been eligible for the one-time student debt relief plan numbered in the hundreds of thousands.

Channel 3 was able to learn from The White House that the exact number was 321,000.

They were part of the Biden Administration’s plan to offer up to $20,000 in forgiveness to borrowers who made less than $125,000 a year. The plan was announced in Aug. 2022.

In one weekend, more than 8 million people across the country applied. Forty million qualified.

Of the 321,000 in Connecticut, about 238,000 of those were about to see that relief right before federal courts in several states moved to block the plan. Lawsuits were filed.

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona spoke to Channel 3 about it.

“At the end of the day, middle class Americans need some help and what I’m hearing from them in traveling the country is they need a little bit of help,” Cardona said. “Prices are going up. That’s what we’re trying to do. I’m confident we’re going to prevail here.”

Nationwide, more than 16 million people in the U.S. were approved for debt relief, The White House revealed.

The fate of the plan was put on the U.S. Supreme Court.

“I’m confident, number one, that I have the legal authority to do what we did,” Cardona siad. “The last administration used that same Heroes Act authority to initiate a pause. We’re using the same authority to provide some relief.”

The suits against the program resulted in all operations being stopped and additional applications no longer accepted.

“We’re not done fighting,” Cardona said. “We’re gonna take it to the Supreme Court. We feel confident that we’ll prevail here. Ninety-percent of the dollars in this proposal go to people making under $75,000. These are middle class Americans that need a little support as they get back on their feet after this [COVID-19] pandemic.”

It could be as late as summer before justices rule on the program.

“I’m confident it’s the right thing to do and we’re not gonna stop fighting to make sure that higher education is more affordable and more accessible to more people,” Cardona said.