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  • Zika Cases Likely Happened Domestically in Florida 1, July29, 2016
    Four people in South Florida likely have the first local and non-travel related Zika cases in the country.  As Matt Galka tells us, containment is now the state’s top priority. Governor Rick Scott broke the news Friday morning, one woman and three men from South Floridaare the first people in the country to get Zika […]
    Matt Galka
  • DNC Not Gun Friendly 1, July28, 2016
    The Democratic convention in Philadelphia has seen a number of speakers, including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, take on the NRA and gun rights. But as Mike Vasilinda tells us, such comments may not play well back home where the state is often called the gunshine state. Calls to limit guns are getting plenty of applause […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Scams Galore 1, July28, 2016
    It can be a helpless, frustrating feeling.  You get a call from the bank or look at your account and see weird charges or that all your money is gone…but you didn’t spend it. As Matt Galka tells us, fraud and scams just seem to be increasing in the state. Greg Tish knows what it’s […]
    Matt Galka
  • Do Not Call List Tops One Million, but the Phone Keeps Ringing 1, July27, 2016
    The phone rings, you pick it up, only to be solicited by a business or telemarketer. As Matt Galka tells us, the state is celebrating a milestone for the list that’s supposed to be helping end those pesky phone calls, but many Floridians are saying there’s a disconnect. Amy Reznik signed up for the Do […]
    Matt Galka
  • Medical Marijuana is now for Sale 1, July26, 2016
    The first legal medical marijuana sale took place in the State Capitol today. Trulieve, the north Florida licensed grower sold the fist low THC marijuana to Dallas Nagy. Nagy got several doses delivered over the weekend and picked more up ion the store today. Nagy suffers from a Parkinson like disease. His caretaker, Joann Bravata […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • The Ballots are in the Mail 1, July26, 2016
    Today was the first day for elections Supervisors to mail out mail in ballots for the August 30th Primary. So far, more than two million ballots have been requested. In the State Capitol, Elections Supervisor Ion Sancho delivered more than 20 thousand ballots to the post office. “This is the largest number of mail ballots […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Algae Delivered to Rick Scott 1, July26, 2016
    Governor Rick Scott got a special delivery of algae from the east coast of Florida today from Congressman and US Senate Candidate Patrick Murphy. Murphy says Scott wouldn’t come see for himself, so Murphy brought the algae to the governor. “We have repeatedly called on the Governor to come down and visitor district to see […]
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  • Environmental Regulation Commission Approves More Chemicals in Surface Waters 1, July26, 2016
    Big agriculture, dry cleaners and wastewater treatment plants are among those who would all benefit from a state plan approved on a three to two vote today. It allows more toxic chemicals to be dumped in our surface waters. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, the presence of some chemicals could triple. Environmentalists waived signs for […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Requests for Mail In Ballots Surge 1, July25, 2016
    Elections supervisors across Florida will begin putting more than two million domestic mail in ballots in the mail tomorrow, which is the first day they ballots can legally be mailed. Supervisors are reporting a 15 to 20 percent increase in ballot requests this election. Karen Williams at the Leon County Elections Supervisor’s Office says they […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • First Pot Sales Begin One Day Early 1, July25, 2016
    Florida’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened earlier today in the state Capitol without fanfare. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, the opening follows the first delivery of low THC over the weekend to a Pasco County man. Trulieve opened it’s doors at 8 AM Monday, a day early. Nat sot: “High there!” We were met at the […]
    Mike Vasilinda

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Student Loan Debt Passes A Trillion Dollars

May 8th, 2012 by Anna Laura Rehwinkel

Republicans in the US Senate stopped a debate on student loan interest rates earlier today. If congress doesn’t take action by July, interest rates will double to nearly seven percent. As Whitney Ray tells us, student loan debt nationwide is at a trillion dollars and growing.

Student loan debt passed the trillion dollar mark Tuesday morning according to finaid.org. In Florida, half of all college students graduate with debt. The average amount is 21-thousand dollars. Nationwide the average is 25-thousand.

The housing crisis is partially to blame for the recent spike in student loan debt. In the past families would sometimes borrow against their homes to pay for school, but with property values falling, banks aren’t as willing to take the risk.

But nearly no one is turned down for a student loan, and the money isn’t just for tuition. Some of it pays for room, board and even entertainment. While the debt grows, congress is being asked to freeze student loan interest rates. If they don’t act by July rates will double to 6.8 percent.

Vice President Joe Biden visited FSU earlier this year, and promised to lower college costs, but at least one student objected arguing that government assistant was driving prices higher.

“It creates this perpetual problem where tuition keeps going up so we give more subsidies and tuition goes back up and we give more subsidies,” said Lawrence Dunn who has 20-thousand dollars in debt.

Ed Moore, a member of Florida’s Higher Education Coordinating Council disagrees. Moore says Congress needs to freeze rates. And that 6.8 percent is artificially high.

“There is no economic justification, no market justification for an interest rate to be 6.8 percent,” said Moore.

Moore also says despite the rising cost, a college degree is still worth the debt. The state doesn’t keep records on the total amount students in Florida owe. It also has no financial obligation if a student can’t pay back the money. The debt stays with the borrower, because Federal law prevents people from shedding student loan debt, even if they declare bankruptcy.

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