Miller Encouraged by the Department of Education’s Initial Steps to Protect Taxpayer Investment in Federal Student Loans

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In the wake of a government investigation and media reports highlighting massive student loan fraud at distance learning programs, U.S. Reps. George Miller (D-CA) and Rubén Hinojosa (D-TX), issued the following statements acknowledging the Department of Education’s actions as important first steps to combat student loan fraud.

Following the release of the Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigative findings last month, Miller and Hinojosa (D-TX) urged Secretary Arne Duncan to take immediate action to protect the student loan program. Today, the Department of Education issued  a Dear Colleague Letter  to colleges, universities and other higher education affiliates urging them to take immediate steps to detect and prevent fraud.

“The Department of Education made the right move today by asking the higher education community to pay particularly close attention to the disbursement of aid only to eligible students. We can’t accept anything less than vigilant and unyielding oversight  of the taxpayer’s investment in higher education,” said Miller. “Federal student loans help make the dream of a college degree a reality -- we can’t let bad actors ruin the reputation of this incredibly important program. It’s pertinent that colleges, as well as the Department of Education, keep a laser like focus on how these loans are dispersed and who is on the receiving end.”

“This is a critical first step in addressing fraud in Federal student aid programs at institutions of higher education that offer distance education programs,” said Hinojosa. “We must do everything possible to protect taxpayer investments in education and ensure that we have the proper safeguards in place to detect and prevent fraud.”