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Student-loan debt among issues on table for Alexander

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U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander. AP photo U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander. AP photo
WASHINGTON (News Sentinel) -

You take out loans, go off to college, and after earning your degree, you eventually pay off your debt.

In theory, at least. In reality, not everybody does.

Some 7 million borrowers are currently in default on their student loans, meaning they haven't made a payment in at least nine months, according to the U.S. Department of Education. The amount of those loans in default is a whopping $99 billion.

College affordability and crushing student debt — and what to do about those borrowers who don't repay their loans — are among the issues that await U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Maryville, as he prepares to push this fall for reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.

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