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Senator Smith Applauds Passage of Bipartisan Bill to Ensure Minnesotans Aren’t Forced to Pay Ex-Spouses’ Student Debt

WASHINGTON [9.22.22] – U.S. Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that legislation she co-led to provide relief to individuals with consolidated loan debt with a spouse – including victims of domestic violence and financial abuse – has passed the House of Representatives and will be signed into law by President Biden. The bipartisan, bicameral bill will allow individuals to sever joint consolidation loans with a former spouse, which will provide long overdue financial freedom for vulnerable individuals who are being unfairly held responsible for the debt of a former partner.  “It’s not fair for Minnesotans to be left on the hook for the students loans of a former spouse.  Survivors of domestic violence and financial abuse should not be tied to their abuser by student loans,” said Sen. Smith. “Sixteen years ago Congress ended a misguided loan program, but it did nothing to allow those who already had these loans a fair and appropriate way to cut ties. This bill will allow individuals to sever their joint consolidation loans that links them to a former partner – an especially important step for victims of domestic abuse.  I am thrilled to announce the passage of this common sense bipartisan legislation and look forward to seeing it signed into law by President Biden.” While Congress eliminated the program to allow spouses to consolidate their loans in 2006, it did not provide a mechanism for severing existing loans, leaving thousands of people forced to pay the students loans of their former partners.  These loans also locked

Senators Klobuchar, Smith Announce Significant Investment in Minnesota Childcare Programs on College Campuses

Washington, DC [9.21.22] — U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith (both D-MN) announced significant federal funding that will help provide childcare for low-income parents who face additional challenges in accessing postsecondary education. The grants, which total over $650,000, will support four years of campus-based childcare programs at St. Cloud State University and Minneapolis Community & Technical College. “For far too many parents across our state, the struggle to find high-quality, affordable childcare serves as a barrier preventing them from pursuing higher education or reentering the workforce,” said Klobuchar. “This funding will enable parents attending St. Cloud State University and Minneapolis College to access convenient child care services, allowing them to continue their education and providing their children with the foundational care they need.” “Parents in Minnesota tell me all the time how limiting a lack of affordable childcare can be.  I’ve heard from families who have to drive 50 miles to take their kids to childcare, and others who are paying almost one-third of their income toward the cost of childcare for just one kid,” said Sen. Smith. “A lack of affordable childcare should not be a barrier for parents who want to go back to school.  This funding for campus-based childcare programs will go a long ways towards supporting student parents enrolled at St. Cloud State and MCTC.” The funding was made available through the Department of Education’s Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) Program, which provides grants to support the participation of low-income parents in

U.S. Senator Tina Smith Statement on Today’s Inflation Reduction Act Celebration

WASHINGTON, D.C. [09/13/22] — Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement marking today’s celebration of the historic Inflation Reduction Act: “Today we are celebrating a historic bill that is already meeting the moment. In the month since Senate Democrats – without the help of a single Republican – passed the Inflation Reduction Act, the landmark legislation has created new investments, new jobs, and new opportunities for Americans. “It will reduce costs for American families by lowering prescription drug prices and making health care more affordable. It will unleash a new generation of American manufacturing that will help us

Klobuchar, Smith Secure Significant Federal Funding to Strengthen Public Transit in Twin Cities Suburbs

MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has awarded $8.1 million in federal funding to strengthen public transit in the southwestern Twin Cities suburbs. Specifically, these resources will enable SouthWest Transit, which connects Chaska, Chanhassan, Eden Prairie and Edina to Minneapolis, to upgrade its bus fleet to include more energy-efficient, low-emission vehicles and bolster its bus facility infrastructure.  “Investments in public transit help reduce traffic and make it easier for Minnesotans to get to school, work, and other destinations,” said Klobuchar. “This federal funding will help SouthWest Transit modernize

Klobuchar, Smith Secure Significant Federal Funding to Strengthen Rural Public Transit

MINNEAPOLIS – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has awarded over $3.4 million in federal funding to strengthen public transit in rural Minnesota communities. Specifically, the resources will enable the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to boost transit efficiency and upgrade its bus fleet and bus facility infrastructure on lines servicing Greater Minnesota.      “Investments in public transit help reduce traffic and make it easier for Minnesotans to get to school, work, and other destinations,” said Klobuchar. “This federal funding will make a real difference in rural communities across our state,

Sen. Smith Announces Significant Investment in Minnesota Youth Mental Health Programs

WASHINGTON [9.13.22] –Today, U.S. Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that Minnesota will receive at least $800,000 in youth mental health grants. The grants – aimed at addressing increasing youth mental health conditions – are made possible through funding from the American Rescue Plan, which Sen. Smith helped pass earlier this year.  “As we continue to address the impacts of COVID-19, another crisis has emerged – the crisis of youth mental health. When I experienced depression, resources were there for me. But right now, too many people don’t have access to the mental health care they need,” said Senator Smith. “These

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