Senate passes proposed amendment on student loans

Sen. Anna Fairclough participates in a discussion during a Senate Resources Committee meeting, Feb. 5, 2014. (Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska)

Sen. Anna Fairclough participates in a discussion during a Senate Resources Committee meeting, Feb. 5, 2014. (Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska)

The Alaska Senate has passed a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at helping lower the cost of student loans.

The vote was 19-1, with Sen. Bert Stedman voting against.

SJR23, from Sen. Anna Fairclough, proposes a change to the state constitution to allow for authorization of state general obligation debt for funding student loans.

The executive officer of the Alaska Student Loan Corp. has said the proposal would allow the corporation to leverage the state’s credit rating to achieve the lowest possible costs for financing state education loans and making loans more widely available.

The measure still must be considered by the House.

Constitutional amendments require two-thirds vote of each the House and Senate before it can qualify for the ballot.

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