New Law Allows NC Community Colleges To Refuse Low-Interest Federal Loans

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The General Assembly has completed its override of Gov. Beverly Perdue's veto of a bill that gives all North Carolina community colleges the ability to refuse to participate in a low-interest federal student loan program.

The Senate voted 31-16 Monday evening to cancel Perdue's veto of the measure, which changes a previous law requiring all 5
8 campuses to participate in the Ford Federal Direct Loan Program. The margin is above the three-fifths majority necessary for an override. The House voted to override late last week. The bill now becomes law.

Community college presidents have sought the chance to opt out of the program for fear high default rates could jeopardize access to all federal financial aid. Bill opponents say students need the loans to find new careers.

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