COOPERSTOWN, NY-- Rep. Antonio Delgado met with constituents in the 19th congressional district for a town hall-style meeting in Cooperstown on Monday.
Delgado spoke in front of a crowd of roughly 200 people discussing his priorities and answering questions.
One woman asked Delgado, a democrat, what he plans to do to address student loan debt, that's reached a staggering $1.5 trillion nationally.
Delgado responded saying he wants to lower interest rates from the current 5 percent to 2 percent or even 1 percent. He said that students shouldn't start accruing interest on their loans until after they have graduated. The congressman also said he wants to implement some type of student loan forgiveness program for people who provide a service to the community, such as joining the armed service or volunteering with the Peace Corps. He mentioned that more Federal Pell Grants should be given to students, which unlike other students loans do not have to paid back.
Delgado also mentioned that he wants to help local farmers, specifically after President Trump's trade deal led to more tariffs on agricultural products.
"Acting unilaterally, acting recklessly, does not help our farmers that does not help the economy here at home," he said. "We already see the impact of that as so many farmers had to be aided with tax dollars because of the president's decision, so I will continue request that the president do this process and a way that's more collaborative and there's more forward thinking and not just be knee-jerk reactions."
The congressman said he's holding these types of town halls throughout the year because he wants to be accessible and transparent.
He also recently opened up an office in Oneonta located on 22 Main Street.
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