Rep. Levin Votes to Advance Landmark Legislation to Lower the Cost of College

October 31, 2019
Press Release
The College Affordability Act, which passed out of the Education and Labor Committee today, will tackle the rising cost of college tuition by restoring state and federal investments in public colleges and universities.

Congressman Andy Levin, vice chair of the Education and Labor Committee, today joined Chairman Bobby Scott and other committee Democrats to advance out of committee the College Affordability Act, a comprehensive overhaul of the higher education system that lowers the cost of college for students and families, improves the quality of higher education and expands opportunity for current and future students.

“We owe it to college students—past, current and future—to make bold improvements to our broken system of higher education,” said Congressman Levin. “The College Affordability Act will cut the cost of college immediately and provide relief for existing borrowers. The bill will also improve the quality of higher education by holding schools accountable for the success of their students and create opportunity for prospective students by expanding college options.

“I’m so proud that the College Affordability Act includes the America’s College Promise Act, my bill to guarantee two years of free community college for all. For a fraction of the cost of the GOP tax cut, the College Affordability Act helps make college accessible to all and provides crucial relief for students bearing the weight of the student loan crisis.”

Congressman Levin also led a bipartisan amendment with Rep. Bradley Byrne to help educate elementary and secondary students about their post-secondary options.

The College Affordability Act:

  • Tackles the rising cost of tuition by restoring state and federal investments in public colleges and universities, which will reduce the burden that has been shifted to students and their families.
  • Makes college more affordable for low- and middle-income students by increasing the value of Pell Grants.
  • Eases the burden of student loans by making existing student loans cheaper and easier to pay off.
  • Cracks down on predatory for-profit colleges that defraud students, veterans, and taxpayers.
  • Holds all colleges and universities accountable for providing students a quality education that leads to a rewarding career.  
  • Improves students’ safety on campus by blocking Secretary DeVos’s survivor-blaming Title IX rule and introducing stronger accountability to track and prevent cases of sexual assault, harassment, and hazing.
  • Expands students’ access to high-quality programs by making Pell Grants available for short-term programs.
  • Helps improve graduation rates by providing stronger wraparound services to keep students in school and on track.
  • Invests in the critical institutions that enroll underserved students by increasing and permanently reauthorizing mandatory funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and other Minority Serving Institutions.

This landmark legislation comes more than 10 years after the last reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) and at a time when the combination of rising tuition and inconsistent quality is undermining students’ access to the benefits of a college degree.

Congressman Levin’s America’s College Promise Act creates new partnerships with state governments and provides two years of tuition- and fee-free access to community college programs that lead to a degree or industry-recognized credential. Congressman Levin is also co-author of the Advancing International and Foreign Language Education Act and the Jumpstart Our Businesses by Supporting Students Act, two additional bills also included in the College Affordability Act.

For more information about the College Affordability Act, click here.