|SAME AS||SAME AS S06646|
|Add §679-h, Ed L|
|Establishes the NYS Employee Loan Forgiveness Program; provides that individuals employed by a state employer for 5 years or more with outstanding loan debt are eligible to receive $5,000 per year.|
|01/07/2015||referred to higher education|
|01/06/2016||referred to higher education|
|02/24/2016||amend and recommit to higher education|
|02/24/2016||print number 34a|
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NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A34A SPONSOR: Simanowitz
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to establishing the New York state employee loan forgiveness program   PURPOSE: To establish the New York State Employee Loan Forgiveness program to retain individuals serving as employees of a state employer.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Amendment of the education law by adding a new section 679-e. Section 679-e shall allow the commissioner of education to grant loan forgive- ness awards to state employees who have a minimum of five (5) years of qualified service and have outstanding student loan debt. A number of elected officials, judges, and those appointed to boards or commissions by the governor are not eligible. The awards may be granted in amounts ranging from $5,000 not to exceed $10,000. Awards will be based on availability of funds.   JUSTIFICATION: Admittedly, the cost of higher education has skyrocketed in. recent years. It has become so expensive to pay for one's higher education, that the decisions regarding career are being determined based on economics. Consequently, the public sector job market, specifically the state government has suffered as a result of the economic competition in the job marketplace. Without being able to match the salaries of the newly graduated in the private sector, the state government suffers by having to forego many talented individuals. This bill is a means of investing in the individuals who are willing to invest in the state for a job. The return is not immediate, but the investment will be.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2009-10: A.7243/S.1225 Referred to Higher Education both houses. 2011-12: A.1818 Referred to Higher Education. 2013-2014: Referred to Higher Education.   EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 34--A 2015-2016 Regular Sessions IN ASSEMBLY (Prefiled) January 7, 2015 ___________ Introduced by M. of A. SIMANOWITZ -- read once and referred to the Committee on Higher Education -- recommitted to the Committee on High- er Education in accordance with Assembly Rule 3, sec. 2 -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to establishing the New York state employee loan forgiveness program The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 679-h 2 to read as follows: 3 § 679-h. New York state employee loan forgiveness program. 1. 4 Purpose. The commissioner shall grant student loan forgiveness awards 5 for the purpose of retaining individuals serving as employees of a state 6 employer. 7 2. Definitions. (a) "State employer" means: (1) the executive branch 8 of the state, (2) a cooperative extension association ("association"), 9 (3) the unified court system, (4) the senate, (5) the assembly, and (6) 10 joint legislative employers. 11 (b) "Student loan debt" means the total annual loan repayments 12 required to be made by the eligible employee on the cumulative total of 13 the employee's outstanding student loans covering the cost of attendance 14 at an undergraduate institution and/or graduate school. Interest paid or 15 due on such loans shall be considered eligible for reimbursement under 16 this program. For purposes of this calculation, the amount of the 17 student loan expense shall be reduced by any grants, loan forgiveness, 18 or similar reductions to the employee's indebtedness that he or she has 19 received or shall receive. EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD00478-02-5A. 34--A 2 1 (c) "Year of qualified service" means the twelve-month period measured 2 from the anniversary of the individual's employment with the state 3 employer and adjusted for any interruption in employment. 4 3. Eligibility. (a) To be eligible for an award pursuant to this 5 subdivision, applicants shall: (1) be employed by a state employer; (2) 6 for five or more years of qualified service; and (3) have an outstanding 7 student loan debt. 8 (b) Individuals employed by a state employer who are not eligible 9 include: 10 (1) elected officials, judges or justices appointed to or serving in 11 court of record; 12 (2) officers described in sections four, forty-one-a, forty-six, 13 sixty-one, seventy, seventy-a, one hundred sixty-nine (including those 14 officers whose salary is established pursuant to salary plans under 15 subdivision three of section one hundred sixty-nine), section one 16 hundred eighty and subdivision one of section forty-one of the executive 17 law and any agency or department head appointed by the governor, comp- 18 troller or attorney general; and 19 (3) appointed members of boards or commissions any of whose members 20 are appointed by the governor or by another state officer or body. 21 4. Awards. The commissioner shall grant awards in the amount of five 22 thousand dollars to individuals who are eligible, pursuant to subdivi- 23 sion two of this section, in the year prior to such application, 24 provided that no recipient shall receive an award that exceeds the total 25 remaining balance of the student loan debt and that no recipient shall 26 receive cumulative awards, pursuant to this section, in excess of ten 27 thousand dollars. Awards shall be within the amounts appropriated for 28 such purpose and based on availability of funds. 29 5. Rules and regulations. The commissioner is authorized to promulgate 30 rules and regulations necessary for the implementation of the provisions 31 of this section. 32 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.