Stakeholders Comment on Colorado Student Loan Equit Catch-22 …
Stakeholders, including members of ACA International, who would be impacted by the Colorado Student Loan Equity Act, SB 21-057, signed by Governor Jared Polis on June 29, called for more information on the regulations and their cost during a public hearing with the Colorado attorney general’s office on Wednesday.
SB 21-057 expands Colorado’s existing student loan services law, which applies only to people who administer student loans, by adding a new part covering private lenders, creditors and collection agencies in connection with student loans that are not made, insured or guaranteed under federal law and are used for post-secondary education, the ACA reported previously.
ACA members testified on the bill in hearings this spring following a campaign to seek member opinions with creditors working in Colorado’s private student loan industry.
The law authorizes the administrator of the Uniform Consumer Credit Code of the Department of Justice to establish fees for the register of private education lenders, to set requirements for the timing of documents and information required for the register and prescribing an alternative registration process and fee structure. for public and private not-for-profit post-secondary educational institutions.
Registration is required by September 1, 2021. Administrator plans to develop emergency rules to implement registration and public hearing as part of the process to determine number of entities who will need to register.
In response to questions from Makyla Moody, a member of the ACA, an attorney at Greenberg Sada and Moody PC in Englewood Colorado, Colorado student loans ombudsperson Kelsey Lesco said the attorney general currently has no information about registration or license fees and application availability.
“It could influence the number of people who are likely to apply,” Moody said. She added that the fee structure should be based on the loan amounts offered by private lenders versus public educational institutions.
However, Lesco reiterated that the attorney general was seeking information on the number of entities that would apply under the amended law to determine its tariff structure.
Representatives of private lenders also commented at the hearing.
Kay Rendleman of the Colorado Institute of Massage Therapy in Colorado Springs said the application fees and registration fees will impact their ability to continue to provide financial assistance to their students, which many rely on.
“Because of that, you’re going to stop schools from offering these programs,” Rendleman said.
Heidi Markey, director of financial aid at Adams State University in Alamosa, Colo., Said she agrees with Rendleman and the fees will impact their loans.
“It would have a negative impact on our student population. We have several situations where students are not able to borrow through the federal direct loan program, ”said Markey. “This is a group that we would consider at risk… we are going to lose students because of this.”
Lesco said the attorney general’s office will review the comments from the meeting and provide an update to stakeholders and licensees on next steps. They did not receive any written comments, which were due to be sent on July 14.
For more information, see a copy of the proposed draft regulation to enforce the law.
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