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U.S. Senator Dick Durbin and Roosevelt financial aid director warn against cutting student loan deduction

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Michelle Stipp and Senator Dick Durbin
"This could put life decisions, like buying a new home, back even further." Michelle Stipp Roosevelt University Director of Financial Aid

Roosevelt University Director of Financial Aid Michelle Stipp joined U.S. Senator Dick Durbin at the University on Monday in warning against any snap decisions regarding the proposed overhaul of the nation’s tax code.

During a press conference in Roosevelt’s Wabash Building, Stipp, who is president of the Illinois Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, spoke against eliminating the $2,500 tax deduction for those who are paying back student loans.

"Our leaders must be careful to meet the needs of families," said Stipp, who predicted the cost of student-loan borrowing could increase by $24 billion without the deduction. “This could push life decisions, like buying a new home, back even further,” she said.

Durbin predicted eliminating that deduction, along with deductions for state and local taxes and medical expenses would be particularly detrimental for the Illinois economy and its middle-income taxpayers.

He called on GOP members of Congress to join him in opposing proposed tax-code changes that President Trump and Republicans on Capitol Hill want pushed through before the end of the year.

“We need our Illinois delegation to come home, measure the impact and join me in feeling that we could do better,” said Durbin, who is warning Illinois will be the fifth hardest hit state in the nation by tax-code changes.

Of the 23 million people across the nation paying back student loans, about half took advantage of the tax deduction for student loan repayment in 2015, according to Stipp, who called the GOP House proposal to eliminate the deduction “troubling.”

The Roosevelt news conference was last local stop before Durbin returned Monday to Washington, D.C. where a debate on proposed changes to the nation’s tax code are about to get underway.

”Illinois will be hit harder than 45 other states,” the senator said. “Our seven GOP Congressmen in this state have to stand up and say no.”

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