The House Republican fiscal 2014 budget blueprint would gut the student-loan repayment program for federal employees, according to The Washington Post.
The budget plan – proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and passed by the House on March 21 -- “assumes discretionary savings by eliminating the repayment by the government of student loans for federal employees,” according to a House report.
Cutting the loan program is one element of the broader strategy, which includes steep cutbacks on spending for federal personnel and benefits.
Federal agencies have used the program as a recruitment incentive. A report submitted by Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry to Congress in January 2013 said 34 agencies provided more than 10,000 employees more than $71.8 million in student loan repayment benefits in 2011. Most of the benefits were provided to employees of the Defense, Justice and State departments, the report indicated.
Ryan’s budget also includes provisions to reduce the federal workforce by 10 percent by 2015 primarily through attrition. It claims that the move will save $49 billion over the next decade.
“Each budget reflects our priorities, reflects our principles, reflects our visions,” Ryan said in a statement released March 17. “We believe in balancing the budget, we believe in getting government to live within their means.”
The Senate’s budget blueprint does not eliminate the loan repayment program, the Post reported.