News Bite

College Loan Payoffs For Government Employees — And These Teacher Union Officials

U.S. taxpayers pick up the tab

Two presidents of local teachers unions in Michigan recently had their student loans paid off by taxpayers, according to the American Federation of Teachers – Michigan, the state chapter of the AFT.

Mistie Ryan, president of the Lake Shore Federation of Teachers, and Autumn Pokone, president of the Roseville Federation of Teachers, both were informed that tens of thousands of dollars they owed for past student loans “had been erased,” according to a newsletter put out by the AFT, which is the state’s second largest teachers union.

Ryan was quoted in the newsletter as saying, “It was like winning the lotto.”

Her gross pay was $64,437 in 2021, and Pokone’s gross pay was $77,981 that year.

The two teachers were beneficiaries of the federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. Participants who make monthly payments for 10 years can get taxpayers to pay off the balance of their student debt.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.