The inside of the Michigan Senate where the House Bill 4409 was introduced.

A bill was introduced in the Michigan Senate and House that aims to allow tax breaks for Michigan graduates with student loan debt.

House Bill 4409, which was introduced by Democrats Senator Curtis Hertel, Jr. and Representative Andy Schor, would authorize an income tax credit equal to 50 percent of the amount of payments made on a student loan by a resident who earned a degree from a Michigan-based school. The borrower must also be employed in the state. While the credit is “non-refundable,” it would decrease a borrower’s tax liability on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

This is just the latest bill introduced by lawmakers around the country designed to help ease the burden of massive student loan debt. Americans now owe a combined $1.41 trillion in student loans—more than credit card debt. And many of these borrowers are struggling to make their monthly payments. As a result, they cannot contribute to local economies and make large purchases such as homes and cars. Some are even putting off marriage and starting a family because of their student loan debt.

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Michigan currently ranks 35th in the nation in terms of student loan debt, leaving graduates with $18,174 on average. Those leaving Ferris State University can expect nearly $30,000; contrarily, those leaving Michigan State may only end up owing $11,000 according to The Student Loan Report.

Image Copyright © Mark Blumer