Porter introduces innovative proposal to provide relief for student loan borrowers amidst COVID-19 pandemic

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INDIANAPOLIS – Today, State Representative Gregory W. Porter (D-Indianapolis) introduced a bold proposal to help relieve forgotten student loan borrowers using money from a dormant state program. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act has provided a temporary moratorium on federally-issued student loans set to expire on Sept. 30.

“As the effects of COVID-19 continue to impact our state's physical and economic health, no Hoosier should have to choose between timely student loan payments, putting a roof over their families' heads, or safeguarding their health from the virus,” Porter said. “Our state has two months to decide how we will help student loan borrowers when payments resume or Hoosiers will be forced to make those difficult choices.”

The plan would use existing funds from the Indiana Secondary Market for Education Loans (ISMEL), now known as INvestED, previously used to underwrite student loans over 20 years ago. Since INvestED is no longer an active program, Porter wants to use the $130 million in liquid assets to help student loan borrowers after the federal moratorium expires.

Porter has been outspoken during the COVID-19 aid distribution process, advocating for money to be disbursed effectively, transparently and with maximum benefit to Hoosiers.

“Indiana had a student loan crisis before the pandemic with individual debt averaging around $30,000,” Porter said. “This unused $130 million of taxpayer money could provide meaningful economic relief that would benefit the Hoosier State during and after its recovery from COVID-19.”

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