Article

Castor Scores One For Families In A Bind

The Tampa Tribune Editorial

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Tampa, May 1, 2008 | Agustina Guerrero ((813)871-2817) | comments
U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor has made a point of giving special attention to the financial needs of college students from working-class families during her tenure, and she recently took an important step to ensure bad economic times don't prevent the college-bound from pursuing their dreams.
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U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor has made a point of giving special attention to the financial needs of college students from working-class families during her tenure, and she recently took an important step to ensure bad economic times don't prevent the college-bound from pursuing their dreams.

Recently, Castor spearheaded an amendment to the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act of 2008 to keep families from being penalized for having overdue medical bills.

Castor's amendment expanded the "extenuating circumstance" exemption to low-cost federal student loans to include overdue medical bills, as well as past-due mortgages, allowing families with those economic hardships to still be considered for the loans.

Castor recognizes that housing and health care costs in this economy are often the two most overwhelming expenses for families. And the exemption is narrowly tailored to apply just to those who have bills less than 180 days overdue - the measure isn't there to bail out people who never pay their debts, just those who need a little breathing room.

To be sure, parents who find themselves in a financial fix want something better for their children. And we know that getting just one person in a family a college education can change that family's financial status.

Castor deserves kudos for looking out for families in time of need.
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