....'Currently there are no limits in place for how many years a student could receive a Stafford loan subsidy, but $1.2 billion of the cost of the extension would be recovered by limiting access to the loan to 6 years for a 4-year degree.
“Republicans and Democrats worked hard to find common ground,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Friday morning. “The agreement we’ve reached will ensure that college students who are already facing enormous challenges in the Obama economy won’t be paying higher interest rates next month.”
Tucked into the deal are two other critical pieces of legislation set to run out of money soon: the highway bill that has plagued both chambers and an extension of the National Flood Insurance Program, which was due to expire at the end of July.
As the hurricane season looms, the agreement extends funding for flood insurance until September of 2017.
For months, the House was unable to pass its version of the highway bill, instead opting eventually for a short-term extension to give negotiators another 90 days to work out a deal. But that temporary patch was set to expire Saturday, threatening federal highway and transit aid programs and the government’s authority to levy federal fuel taxes expire, and putting about 4,000 jobs at the Department of Transportation at risk.
The agreement funds federal highway, transit and highway safety programs at current levels through the end of FY 2014. It does not include earmarks or increase spending and is fully offset with many reforms included in the Senate-passed highway bill....'