Some members of the state senate might be thinking of some of the things they have heard from the senior member of the MOHELA board as they start debating the govenor’s plan to sell a big chunk of the agency’s assets.

Retired Marshfield banker John Greer has been on the board of the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority since 19-93. He calls himself "the last man standing representing students and student loans."

He says most of the members of the board have been appointed by Governor Blunt, who wants the board to sell more than one-billion dollars worth of student loans to get about 350-million dollars in cash. The money would go for buildings on college campuses.

But Greer says the plan is a "very bad thing." He recalls Goldman Sachs valued the assets at 425-milliion dollars a year ago and asks, "How in the world can we take $350 million dollars out of MOHELA on a value of $425 million and still be a viable, ongoing institution subject to all of the things we do for students?"

Greer has taken his concerns to the Senate Education Committee, which sent the bill to the full senate for debate, saying the sale of the assets would destroy MOHELA’s earnings.

The state senate has started debate on the MOHELA asset bill. The debate is expected to be lengthy.


The bill is SB389

download John Greer’s testimony (12:00 mp3)