WASHINGTON (CBS/AP) -- The Biden administration plans to freeze federal student loan payments through Aug. 31, extending a moratorium that has allowed millions of Americans to postpone payments during the coronavirus pandemic.
The decision was confirmed by an administration official familiar with the White House's decision-making.
Student loan payments were scheduled to resume May 1 after being halted since early in the pandemic. But following calls from Democrats in Congress, the White House plans to give borrowers additional time to prepare for payments.
Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey, plus Massachusetts Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Stephen Lynch and Jim McGovern were among the members of Congress who signed a letter to Biden.
"Given the fast-approaching deadline for borrowers to resume payments, your administration must act as quickly as possible to extend the pause and make clear to the American public your intention to cancel a meaningful amount of student debt," the letter urged.
Pressley pushed Biden to go even further on Tuesday.
The decision was first reported by Bloomberg. The action applies to more than 43 million Americans who owe a combined $1.6 trillion in student debt held by the federal government.
(© Copyright 2022 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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