As finals week approaches with summer in tow, here are some law-related and current-events issues to watch out for this beach season.
1. Loan interest rates could double
Students with a subsidized Stafford loan — the most common type of loan — could increase from 3.4 to 6.8 percent if Congress can’t reach an agreement to avert the hike.
According to a 2011 Project on Student Debt study, the average MSU student graduates with $23,725 of debt.
2. Gay marriage could become legal
Remember when half your Facebook friends changed their profile pictures to red equal signs?
Some students showed support for gay marriage through this picture when the Supreme Court took up a case for same-sex marriage in late March.
The court is slated to issue a ruling in June on a potential landmark case that could invalidate Proposal 8 — a referendum that bans gay marriage in California, which was approved by 52 percent of California voters.
3. Higher education budget could be approved
Although Gov. Rick Snyder has until Oct. 1 to sign off on a budget, which includes funding for higher education, he signed early on June 26 last year.
Under the Michigan Legislature’s House Appropriations Subcommittee on Higher Education’s proposed budget, universities will lose funding if the MSU Board of Trustees increase next year’s tuition by more than 3 percent.
4. Lansing casino could be built
The Sault St. Marie Tribe of the Chippewa Indians has less than a month to take its case to build a $245 million casino in downtown Lansing to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Cincinnati.
Michigan’s attorney general has been fighting against the project for months, tribe is in partnership with Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero’s administration.
5. Immigration reform bill could pass
President Barack Obama said political leaders could come to an agreement on a bipartisan immigration legislation, according to numerous media reports.
Their goal is to draft legislation that will both help immigrants work toward citizenship and improve security at U.S. borders.
6. Minimum wage could increase
Although there’s no deadline for lawmakers to reach a decision, raising minimum wage has been in both national and local spotlight the last few months.
The Michigan Legislature introduced a bill to increase the state’s minimum wage by small increments from its $7.40 rate to reach $10 per hour by 2016.
Obama proposed increasing the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $9 in February during his State of the Union address.
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