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Housing for college students sought

  • Written by Jester P. Manalastas
  • Published in Nation
  • Read: 401

QUEZON City Rep. Alfred Vargas yesterday asked the National Housing Authority (NHA) about the
possibility of creating low-cost housing units for  college students, especially those from low-income
families.

In filing House Bill 1390 or an Act Providing for Student Financing Scheme, Vargas underscored
the need to provide students with decent and affordable accommodations while studying at tertiary
schools.
     
Vargas said while the government is ensuring accessible and quality education for all the
citizens, it is also imperative to provide reasonable facilities such as dormitories and residence
halls.
     
“It is crucial that for the state to create and ensure an environment conducive to education or
learning, it must make student accommodation a top priority,” he stressed.
     
Under the measure, the NHA, in coordination with the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd),  is
mandated to create a housing project for students like dormitories, mid-rise condominiums, and other
similar facilities near big state colleges and universities.
    
The housing facilities should be under a financial scheme, with low interest and long-term
payments, so that parents can afford them.
     
The Student Housing Act, however, should also provide students from poor families  free
accommodation in student housing facilities through a subsidized or sponsored payment scheme.
     
“The students of low-income families cannot concentrate on their studies because of the
financial worries due to  board and lodging costs,” Vargas said.
     
The Quezon City solon said the bill does not prohibit the NHA to encourage and urge the private
sector to invest in student housing through tax exemptions and financing schemes.
 
The NHA is tasked to ensure affordable interest rates and long-term payment schemes or graduated
amortization scheme and subsidy of a portion of the interest payments or of the capita cost of
construction should this measure be enacted into law.