2 U.S. Code § 60c–5 - Student loan repayment program for Senate employees
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In this section:
(1) Eligible employee
The term “eligible employee” means an individual, except as provided under subsection (b)(3)—
(B) whose rate of pay as an employee of the Senate, on the date on which such eligibility is determined, does not exceed the rate of basic pay for an employee for a position at ES–1 of the Senior Executive Schedule as provided for in subchapter VIII of chapter 53 of title 5 (including any locality pay adjustment applicable to the Washington, D.C.-Baltimore Maryland consolidated metropolitan statistical area).
(2) Employee of the Senate
The term “employee of the Senate”—
(A) has the meaning given the term under section 1301 of this title; and
(3) Employing office
The term “employing office”—
(A) means the employing office, as defined under section 1301 of this title, of an employee of the Senate; and
(5) Student loan
The term “student loan” means—
(A) a loan made, insured, or guaranteed under part B, D, or E of title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1071 et seq., 1087a et seq., or 1087aa et seq.); and
(b) Senate student loan repayment program
(1) Service agreements
(A) In general
The head of an employing office and an eligible employee may enter into a written service agreement under which—
(i) the employing office shall agree to repay, by direct payments on behalf of the eligible employee, any student loan indebtedness of the eligible employee that is outstanding at the time the eligible employee and the employing office enter into the agreement, subject to this section; and
(B) Contents of service agreements
(i) Contents A service agreement under this paragraph shall contain—
(III) the employee’s agreement to reimburse the Senate under the conditions set forth in subsection (d)(1) of this section;
(IV) disclosure of the program limitations provided for in subsection (d)(4) of this section and paragraphs (2), (3), (6), and (7) of subsection (f) of this section;
(V) other terms to which the employing office and employee agree (such as terms relating to job responsibilities or job performance expectations); and
(2) Submission of agreements
On entering into a service agreement under this section, the employing office shall submit a copy of the service agreement to the Secretary.
(3) Exclusion from participation in dual programs
Notwithstanding section 5379 of title 5, an employee of the Office of Congressional Accessibility Services may not participate in the student loan repayment program through an agreement under that section and participate in the student loan repayment program through a service agreement under this section at the same time.
(c) Program conditions
(1) Period of employment
The term of the required period of employment under a service agreement under this section shall be 1 year. On completion of the required period of employment under such a service agreement, the eligible employee and the employing office may enter into additional service agreements for successive 1-year periods of employment.
(2) Amount of payments
(A) In general
The amount of student loan payments made under service agreements under this section on behalf of an eligible employee may not exceed—
(B) Payments included in gross compensation limitations
(d) Loss of eligibility for student loan payments and obligation to reimburse
(1) In general
An employee shall not be eligible for continued student loan payments under a service agreement under this section and (except in a case in which an employee’s duty is terminated under paragraph (2) or an employing office assumes responsibilities under paragraph (3)) shall reimburse the Senate for the amount of all student loan payments made on behalf of the employee under the agreement, if, before the employee completes the required period of employment specified in the agreement—
(B) the employee engages in misconduct or does not maintain an acceptable level of performance, as determined by the head of the employing office; or
(2) Termination of agreement
The duty of an eligible employee to fulfill the required period of employment under the service agreement shall be terminated if—
(A) funds are not made available to cover the cost of the student loan repayment program carried out under this section; or
(3) Another employing office
An employing office who hires an eligible employee during a required period of employment under such a service agreement may assume the remaining obligations (as of the date of the hiring) of the employee’s prior employing office under the agreement.
(4) Failure of employee to reimburse
If an eligible employee fails to reimburse the Senate for the amount owed under paragraph (1), such amount shall be collected—
(A) under section 60c–2a (c) of this title or section 5514 of title 5 if the eligible employee is employed by any other office of the Senate or agency of the Federal Government; or
(5) Crediting of amounts
Any amount repaid by, or recovered from, an eligible employee under this section shall be credited to the subaccount for the employing office from which the amount involved was originally paid. Any amount so credited shall be merged with other sums in such subaccount for the employing office and shall be available for the same purposes, and subject to the same limitations (if any), as the sums with which such amount is merged.
(e) Records and reports
(1) In general
Not later than January 1, 2003, and each January 1 thereafter, the Secretary shall prepare and submit to the Committee on Rules and Administration of the Senate and the Committee on Appropriations of the Senate, a report for the fiscal year preceding the fiscal year in which the report is submitted, that contains information specifying—
(B) the costs of such payments, including—
(ii) the amount of any reimbursement amounts for early separation from service or whether any waivers were provided with respect to such reimbursements; and
Such report shall not include any information which is considered confidential or could disclose the identity of individual employees or employing offices. Information required to be contained in the report of the Secretary under section 104a of this title shall not be considered to be personal information for purposes of this paragraph.
(f) Other administrative matters
(A) In general
The Secretary shall establish and maintain a central account from which student loan payments available under this section shall be paid on behalf of eligible employees.
(B) Office subaccounts
The Secretary shall ensure that, within the account established under subparagraph (A), a separate subaccount is established for each employing office to be used by each such office to make student loan payments under this section. Such student loan payments shall be made from any funds available to the employing office for student loan payments that are contained in the subaccount for the office.
(2) Beginning of payments
Student loan payments may begin under this section with respect to an eligible employee upon—
Student loan payments may be made under this section only with respect to the amount of student loan indebtedness of the eligible employee that is outstanding on the date on which the employee and the employing office enter into a service agreement under this section. Such payments may not be made under this section on a student loan that is in default or arrears.
(4) Payment on multiple loans
Student loan payments may be made under this section with respect to more than 1 student loan of an eligible employee at the same time or separately, if the total payments on behalf of such employee do not exceed the limits under subsection (c)(2)(A) of this section.
(5) Treatment of payments
Student loan payments made on behalf of an eligible employee under this section shall be in addition to any basic pay and other forms of compensation otherwise payable to the eligible employee, and shall be subject to withholding for income and employment tax obligations as provided for by law.
(6) No relief from liability
An agreement to make student loan payments under this section shall not exempt an eligible employee from the responsibility or liability of the employee with respect to the loan involved and the eligible employee shall continue to be responsible for making student loan payments on the portion of any loan that is not covered under the terms of the service agreement.
(7) Reduction in payments
Notwithstanding the terms of a service agreement under this section, the head of an employing office may reduce the amount of student loan payments made under the agreement if adequate funds are not available to such office. If the head of the employing office decides to reduce the amount of student loan payments for an eligible employee, the head of the office and the employee may mutually agree to terminate the service agreement.
(8) No right to continued employment
A service agreement under this section shall not be construed to create a right to, promise of, or entitlement to the continued employment of the eligible employee.
(9) No entitlement
A student loan payment under this section shall not be construed to be an entitlement for any eligible employee.
(10) Treatment of payments
A student loan payment under this section—
(A) shall not be basic pay of an employee for purposes of chapters 83 and 84 of title 5 (relating to retirement) and chapter 87 of such title (relating to life insurance coverage); and
(g) Allocation of funds
(1) Maximum amount
In this subsection, the term “maximum amount”, used with respect to a fiscal year, means—
(A) in the case of an employing office described in subsection (h)(1)(A) of this section, the amount described in that subsection for that fiscal year; and
From the total amount made available to carry out this section for a fiscal year, there shall be allocated to each employing office for that fiscal year—
(B) if the total amount is not sufficient to provide the maximum amount to each employing office, an amount that bears the same relationship to the total amount as the maximum amount for that employing office for that fiscal year bears to the total of the maximum amounts for all employing offices for that fiscal year.
(h) Authorization of appropriations
(1) In general
There are authorized to be appropriated (or otherwise made available from appropriations) to carry out this section the following amounts for each fiscal year:
(A) For each employing office that is the personal office of a Senator, an amount equal to 2 percent of the total sums appropriated for the fiscal year involved for administrative and clerical salaries for such office.
Source(Pub. L. 107–68, title I, § 102,Nov. 12, 2001, 115 Stat. 563; Pub. L. 107–117, div. B, § 916,Jan. 10, 2002, 115 Stat. 2324; Pub. L. 112–74, div. G, title I, § 1001(a), (b),Dec. 23, 2011, 125 Stat. 1124.)
References in Text
The Higher Education Act of 1965, referred to in subsec. (a)(5)(A), is Pub. L. 89–329, Nov. 8, 1965, 79 Stat. 1219, as amended. Parts B, D, and E of title IV of the Act are classified to parts B (§ 1071 et seq.), C (§ 1087a et seq.), and D (§ 1087aa et seq.), respectively, of subchapter IV of chapter 28 of Title 20, Education. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1001 of Title 20 and Tables.
The Public Health Service Act, referred to in subsec. (a)(5)(B), is act July 1, 1944, ch. 373, 58 Stat. 682, as amended. Part A of title VII of the Act is classified generally to part A (§ 292 et seq.) of subchapter V of chapter 6A of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare. Part E of title VIII of the Act is classified generally to part E (§ 297a et seq.) of subchapter VI of chapter 6A of Title 42. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 201 of Title 42 and Tables.
Section 60c–2a (c) of this title, referred to in subsec. (d)(4)(A), was in the original “section 104(c) of the Legislative Appropriation Act, 1977”, and was translated as reading “section 104(c) of the Legislative Branch Appropriation Act, 1977”, to reflect the probable intent of Congress.
Section 104a of this title, referred to in subsec. (e)(2), was in the original “section 105(a) of the Legislative Branch Act, 1965”, and was translated as reading “section 105(a) of the Legislative Branch Appropriation Act, 1965”, to reflect the probable intent of Congress.
Section is from the Congressional Operations Appropriations Act, 2002, which is title I of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2002.
2011—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 112–74, § 1001(a)(1), inserted “, except as provided under subsection (b)(3)” after “means an individual” in introductory provisions.
Subsec. (a)(2), (3). Pub. L. 112–74, § 1001(a)(2), added pars. (2) and (3) and struck out former pars. (2) and (3) which read as follows:
“(2) Employee of the senate.—The term ‘employee of the Senate’ has the meaning given the term in section 1301 of this title.
“(3) Employing office.—The term ‘employing office’ means the employing office, as defined in section 1301 of this title, of an employee of the Senate.”
Subsec. (b)(3). Pub. L. 112–74, § 1001(b), added par. (3).
2002—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107–117, § 916(1), redesignated pars. (2) to (6) as (1) to (5), respectively, and struck out heading and text of former par. (1). Text read as follows: “The term ‘Committee’ means the Committee on Rules and Administration of the Senate.”
Subsec. (g)(1). Pub. L. 107–117, § 916(2), substituted “subsection (h)(1)(A)” for “subsection (i)(1)(A)” in subpar. (A) and “subsection (h)(1)(B)” for “subsection (i)(1)(B)” in subpar. (B).
Effective Date of 2011 Amendment
Pub. L. 112–74, div. G, title I, § 1001(c),Dec. 23, 2011, 125 Stat. 1124, provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section] shall take effect on the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 23, 2011] and apply to service agreements entered into under section 102 of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2002 (2 U.S.C. 60c–5) or section 5379 of title 5, United States Code, on or after that date.”
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