JEFFERSON CITY, Mo — The number of Missouri families savings for education costs is growing after State Treasurer Eric Schmitt announced an expansion of the MOST 529 Savings Plan to include K-12 tuition costs earlier this year.
In the first months of 2018, the plan has gained around 3,600 new beneficiaries and has seen over $70 million in new contributions. The growth has coincided with an increased level of interest from parents seeking to utilize the plan’s new qualified expenses.
“The increase in enrollment we have seen in the MOST program is indicative of something we already knew – parents are excited about having more flexibility to use their 529 plans as they see fit,” Schmitt said. “Missourians are investing in the education of our next generation, which will have a positive impact on workforce development and economic opportunity for decades to come.”
In January Schmitt announced the MOST 529 Savings Plan had been expanded to include tuition for public, private and religious K-12 schools as a result of federal tax reform. Missouri became one of the first states to authorize the new expense when the MOST 529 governing board passed a resolution acknowledging the change on January 2.
Since then, Schmitt has raised awareness about the plan’s new features by working with program partner Ascensus to facilitate information sessions and meet with potential account owners. Last month his office hosted a Facebook Live Townhall to discuss the changes and answer questions from interested parents.
“The work Treasurer Schmitt is doing to raise awareness about this expansion has been critical to ensuring the success of the program,” said State Representative Chuck Basye (R-47), who chairs the House Subcommittee on Missouri’s 529 Savings Plan. “Any growth in the MOST 529 Savings Plan is good for our students and good for our economy.”
MOST 529 is a tax-advantaged program that empowers Missouri families to save for a child’s K-12 tuition and other qualified higher education expenses. The plan offers federal and state tax benefits, low costs and flexible ways to contribute.
Prior to the passage of federal tax reform in December 2017, MOST 529 plans were limited to higher education expenses. Under the new provision, MOST 529 account owners can spend up to $10,000 annually on tuition expenses at a public, private or religious elementary or secondary school. To learn more about MOST, visit MissouriMOST.org.