UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, the Bronx (PIX11) — President Joe Biden’s announcement on Wednesday that he’s ordering debt forgiveness for some 43 million Americans with $1.6 trillion in unpaid student loans resonated strongly in the New York City region.

In New York City alone, according to the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, one in six residents has some amount of student loan debt.

Central Brooklyn and the central Bronx have the highest density of people in arrears for their student loans, according to a DCWP study and report published in 2018.

Pablo Denis, the father of an incoming student at Bronx Community College, said that he’s still paying off some law school debt, even as his children go to college.

“Unfortunately, at this level of my life,” Denis said, “I’ve had to take on more debt to pay for my children’s education.”

He was among many people in the Central Bronx on Wednesday who expressed support for the president’s program, and said that they could relate to the need for debt forgiveness from a personal perspective.

The plan will forgive up to $10,000 of student loan debt per person and up to $20,000 for people who have debt from aid they received through Pell Grants.

That forgiveness applies to individuals earning less than $125,000 per year, or to households earning less than $250,000 per year.

Some people pointed out that that amount may be inadequate for some families.

Sultana Hussein is a new student at Bronx Community College. “I hope right now it’s enough for us,” she said. “I hope it’s enough.”

Another concern was expressed by student Andhy Gonzalez. “It’s only really a fix — a temporary Band-Aid that will come up again in the future, unfortunately,” he said.

However, a deputy commissioner at the DCWP said that there’s at least one provision of the president’s new plan that will help reduce the problem going forward: a repayment plan based on a borrower’s income.

“For students with undergraduate debt, which is the majority of debt that folks have,” said Nichole Davis, the deputy commissioner, “it’s going to limit their monthly payment from ten percent, where it is now, to five percent.”

“That can be life changing,” she said.

Some Republican lawmakers have expressed concern that the president’s program will increase the federal deficit. Biden tried to deflect the criticism by saying that his plan can help the economy by freeing up more money for families in arrears.

He also said that it was better for the deficit than the $2 trillion tax cut the GOP had approved for the country’s highest income earners, before Biden took office.

Legal challenges to the student loan forgiveness plan are expected immediately. Therefore, it’s not yet clear when, or if, its provisions will go into effect.