Text: H.R.5016 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (04/20/2016)


114th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 5016


To amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require the Secretary of Education to provide student borrowers with instruction in general principles of financial literacy through its online counseling tool, and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 20, 2016

Mr. Salmon introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education and the Workforce


A BILL

To amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require the Secretary of Education to provide student borrowers with instruction in general principles of financial literacy through its online counseling tool, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Financial Literacy for Financial Aid Act”.

SEC. 2. Online counseling tools.

(a) Option for institutions of higher education.—Section 485(l)(1)(A)(ii) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1092(l)(1)(A)(ii)) is amended—

(1) in subclause (II), by striking “or” at the end;

(2) in subclause (III), by striking the period at the end and inserting “; or”; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

“(IV) through the use of the online counseling tool described in subsection (n).”.

(b) Requirements for Secretary of Education.—Section 485 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1092) is further amended by adding at the end the following:

“(n) Online counseling tools.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—Beginning not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of the Financial Literacy for Financial Aid Act, the Secretary shall maintain an online counseling tool that—

“(A) provides the entrance counseling required under subsection (l); and

“(B) meets the applicable requirements of this subsection.

“(2) REQUIREMENTS OF TOOLS.—In maintaining the online counseling tool described in paragraph (1), the Secretary shall ensure that the tool is—

“(A) consumer tested, in consultation with other relevant Federal agencies, to ensure that the tool is effective in helping individuals understand the information described in subsection (l)(2);

“(B) interactive and tests the borrower’s understanding of the information described in subsection (l)(2);

“(C) understandable to borrowers of loans made under part D;

“(D) effective in providing instruction in general financial literacy in accordance with paragraph (3) of this subsection; and

“(E) freely available to all eligible institutions.

“(3) GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF FINANCIAL LITERACY.—The Secretary shall ensure that the online counseling tool provides instruction in general principles of financial literacy, including the following:

“(A) PERSONAL INCOME.—An explanation of—

“(i) how to identify various types of income and expenses;

“(ii) gross and net pay and how to read a paycheck stub; and

“(iii) how to craft financial goals.

“(B) TAXES.—An explanation of—

“(i) the history of taxes;

“(ii) the purpose and uses of taxes; and

“(iii) how to differentiate between types of taxes.

“(C) RETIREMENT.—An explanation of—

“(i) the importance of planning for retirement;

“(ii) retirement strategies to achieve financial goals;

“(iii) how to differentiate among the types of investment vehicles for retirement; and

“(iv) how to assess overall financial situation in determining retirement needs.

“(D) SPENDING PLANS AND BANKING RESOURCES.—An explanation of—

“(i) the benefits of transaction and savings accounts;

“(ii) how compound interest helps saved money grow; and

“(iii) how to define and create a spending plan.

“(E) CREDIT CARDS.—An explanation of—

“(i) how to define and calculate the cost of borrowing;

“(ii) the difference between good debt and bad debt;

“(iii) credit cards and how to evaluate credit card offers;

“(iv) consumer credit rights; and

“(v) credit scores.

“(F) FINANCIAL RECOVERY AND GIVING BACK.—An explanation of—

“(i) how to assess financial health;

“(ii) how to budget;

“(iii) how to find ways to reduce expenses or increase income;

“(iv) the difference between credit repair and credit consolidation;

“(v) the importance of charitable giving; and

“(vi) how to define future financial goals.

“(4) RECORD OF COUNSELING COMPLETION.—The Secretary shall use the online counseling tool described in paragraph (1) to keep a record of which individuals have received counseling using the tool, and notify the applicable institutions of the individual’s completion of such counseling.”.

SEC. 3. Report.

Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, and not less than once every 3 years thereafter, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Education and the Workforce of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions of the Senate, a written report that includes an evaluation of the effectiveness of the instruction in general principles of financial literacy described in section 485(n)(3) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1092(n)(3)), as added by this Act.