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Request for Data on Student Loan Repayments

Wednesday, January 14, 2009
CPM 2009-02
MEMORANDUM FOR: 
Chief Human Capital Officers
From: 
Michael W. Hager Acting Director
Subject: 
Request for Data on Student Loan Repayments

Agencies must submit an annual written report to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) on their use of student loan repayments. As a result of recent regulatory changes (see 73 FR 64861, October 31, 2008 ), agencies are now required to report student loan repayment program data by calendar year rather than by fiscal year. OPM requests your agency student loan repayment report by March 31, 2009.

Under 5 U.S.C. 5379 and 5 CFR part 537, agencies are authorized to establish a program under which they may agree to repay certain Federally made, insured, or guaranteed student loans in order to recruit or retain highly qualified personnel. Each report must contain the following data:

  • Number of Federal employees who receive student loan repayment benefits;
  • Job classification of each recipient (i.e., pay plan, occupational series, and job title); and
  • Total dollar amount of student loan repayment benefits.

To provide continuity of data and transparency in the annual reports to Congress, we request that you submit data to OPM in two separate parts:

  • Data for calendar year 2008 (January 1, 2008, through December 31, 2008); and
  • Data for the first quarter of fiscal year 2008 (October 1, 2007 through December 31, 2007).

Each of these reports must include data for an entire department or independent agency. Therefore, departments and agencies must consolidate information from components or bureaus before forwarding their reports to OPM.

Because of the considerable interest in agencies’ use of this valuable human capital management tool, we invite you to share any additional information regarding best practices, lessons learned, program effectiveness, metrics used to measure program success, establishing a business case, program impediments, or other relevant details about your agency’s use of student loan repayments as a recruitment or retention incentive. In addition, we encourage you to identify any ways OPM can further assist you in implementing and administering your student loan repayment program.

If your agency did not provide any student loan repayments during calendar year 2008 or the first quarter of fiscal year 2008, please submit negative reports, and specify whether your agency has established, is in the process of establishing, or does not intend to establish a student loan repayment program. If applicable, please indicate the primary reason(s) your agency does not use student loan repayments as a recruitment or retention tool.

Please submit the two reports, including negative reports, by email to pay-performance-policy@opm.gov. Please include an agency point of contact with a phone number and email address. If you have any questions regarding this request, please contact OPM's Center for Pay and Leave Administration at pay-performance-policy@opm.gov or by telephone at (202) 606-2858.

cc: Human Resources Directors