- - Tuesday, October 25, 2011

HOUSE

Lawmaker faults agency for lack of protection

A House Republican who chairs a panel that oversees education said the federal government has failed to adequately protect college students’ personal information since it began directly issuing student loans.

Rep. Virginia Foxx said the Education Department’s direct student-loan program website crashed earlier this month and users were able to see other students’ personal and financial information.

HEALTH CARE

Chamber asks high court to review health care law

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which has been a fierce opponent of President Obama’s health care overhaul, is taking a more nuanced approach in urging the Supreme Court to take up review of the law.

The organization said in a legal brief filed Tuesday that it takes no position on the constitutionality of the contested provision at the heart of the law, the requirement that individuals purchase health insurance or pay a penalty starting in 2014.

But the Chamber of Commerce said the court should not do what the federal appeals court in Atlanta did, which was to strike down that requirement and leave the rest of the law standing. The business group said health insurers and insurance buyers would face “dire consequences” if the mandate was invalidated by itself.

WHITE HOUSE

Obama set to offer student-loan relief

The White House said President Obama plans to offer millions of student-loan recipients the ability to lower their payments and consolidate their loans.

Mr. Obama on Wednesday will use his executive authority to accelerate a measure passed by Congress that reduces the repayment cap on student loans from 15 percent of discretionary income to 10 percent. The White House wants it to go into effect in 2012, instead of 2014. About 1.6 million borrowers could be affected.

Also, the 5.8 million borrowers who have loans from both the Family Education Loan Program and a direct loan from the government would be able to consolidate them into one loan. The consolidated loan would be up to a half percentage point less.

SENATE

Story Continues →