The House passed President Obama’s tax-cut and unemployment package (which extends several higher education tax benefits) last night by a vote of 277 to 148. The vote clears the bill to be signed into law.
The Middle Class Tax Relief Act of 2010 includes the following financial aid provisions:
• An extension of the American Opportunity Tax Credit
• An extension of the above-the-line tax deduction for qualified education expenses
• An extension of the expanded Coverdell Education Savings Accounts
• An extension of the expanded student loan interest deduction
• An extension of the expanded exclusion for employer-provided educational assistance
• An extension of the exclusion from income of amounts received under certain scholarship programs
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com)—While heading to a private college is still more expensive than going to a state school, the price gap is narrowing: Tuition and fees are climbing at a faster pace at public schools than their private brethren.
You can read the complete October 28 article at CNN.money.
“The Obama administration is pushing to extend a temporary tax credit that helped lower the cost of college tuition for more than 12 million students last year,” Daily Finance reports. “The American Opportunity Tax Credit expanded the range of the existing Hope Credit to more Americans and covers a greater range of items, including computers and textbooks. The tax credit is due to expire at the end of this year, CNNMoney said. Obama administration officials met with reporters to emphasize the importance of maintaining the credit, which would cost $58 billion over 10 years. ‘[Obama] believes that it is important for this to be extended and for families to have the certainty and confidence that this [credit] will be there when they are making the choices about sending their children to college,’ said Gene Sperling, counselor to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.”
You can read the complete Oct. 13, 2010 Daily Finance article on-line.
Per NASFAA (National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators)
Individuals with college education are better off financially than adults who have high school diplomas, according to Education Pays 2010. In addition, college graduates benefit the government by generating higher tax revenues while being less likely to rely on social services. “The evidence is overwhelming that higher education improves people’s lives, makes our economy more efficient, and contributes to a more equitable society,” the report states. In the same vein as previous editions, the report seeks to provide evidence supporting the argument that a college education increases a person’s financial stability and overall well being. Even in today’s economy, with higher unemployment rates than recently seen, college graduates fair better in the job market.
Click here to read the full report.
“You can take some of the sting out of college bills by taking advantage of the credits, deductions and other tax-advantaged programs Congress has enacted to make college more affordable. At the end of this year, though, some of those benefits are scheduled to expire,” USA Today reports. “The [American Opportunity Credit] is scheduled to expire on Dec. 31. There’s a good chance Congress will extend it, ‘but the question is when,’ says Mel Schwarz, partner at Grant Thornton in Washington, D.C. One possibility is that Congress will wait until next year to extend the tax credit and make it retroactive for 2011.”
You can read the complete Sept. 13, 2010 USA Today article on-line.
“Most of what is written about rising college costs places primary blame on a dysfunctional university system,” write David Feldman and Robert Archibald, professors of economics at the College of William and Mary, in Forbes. “Like many large organizations, American universities could be made more efficient, but our review of the evidence convinces us that the primary forces that are driving up costs are not to be found by scouring the account books of colleges for examples of waste. ... Rising college costs are an important byproduct of broad economic forces that have reshaped the entire economy, and in particular of the technological progress that has so dramatically raised living standards over time.”
You can read the complete Aug. 12, 2010 Forbes article on-line.