May 20, 2013
Senate focuses on Farm Bill and House focuses on Student Loans for the bulk of the week
The Senate and House continue to work though legislation that respective committees addressed last week.
The full Senate will consider the Farm Bill (S 954), which the Senate Agriculture Committee passed last week. The Farm Bill reauthorization , which would overhaul farm subsidies and food stamp programs, is expected to be considered by the Senate for the bulk of the floor action this week and again after the Memorial Day recess as well.
The full House is expected to consider and pass two bills passed by the House Education and Workforce Committee last week. First, HR 1949, the IPEDS Act is expected to pass on Wednesday of this week as a Suspension bill — or a bill that is considered a noncontroversial measure. Then, on Thursday, the House will consider HR 1911, the Smarter Solutions for Students Act. This legislation would set interest rates on federal student loans to the 10-year Treasury note rate plus 2.5 percentage points for undergraduate loans and plus 4.5 percentage points for graduate loans as of July 1. Rates would be capped at 8.5 percent and 10.5 percent, respectively, and the interest rates would be calculated yearly. Amendments are expected to be offered to the bill.
The Office of Federal Relations is monitoring both bills closely and will continue tracking their progress.