Local Legislator Wants To Tackle College Student Debt This Season

She has prepared two bills for that purpose.

Frederick, Md. (KM) Across the country, a large number of young men and women are graduating from colleges with a lot of debt, which can affect their chances for obtaining credit in the future, making it difficult to purchase a home or a car.

Frederick County Delegate Kathy Afzali says she will introduce the Student Debt Reduction Act during the upcoming General Assembly Session. She says this bill will inform students and their families who are planning to go to college about the extent of the debt they could incur, and what that will mean after they receive their diplomas.

“I think kids when they’re going to college and they’re 18 years-old, they really can’t comprehend the future and what taking on that high amount of debt is going to cost in terms of their quality of life down the road,” Afzali says. “So we want to make sure that when they make these huge financial decisions between the years of 18 and 21, that they’re very well educated.”

She also says her bill will help students decide whether to attend a public college or university, or a private school. “It also kind of identifies your field of study, and what your degree is, and the average salary for that degree coming out of college. And that also will help people make more informed decisions,” says Afzali.
Another bill Delegate Afzali is sponsoring would let older relatives help their younger family members with college expenses. “If you have a child going into college, or a grandchild, or a niece or nephew who you ¬†favor, and you’d like to help them with their education, and that money is sitting there, what my bill seeks to do is to allow you withdraw that money for higher education without having to pay state tax on that money,” she says.

The 2017 Maryland General Assembly will begin its 90-day session on Wednesday, January 11th.


By Kevin McManus