Pennsyvlania Treasurer's Office
Pennsylvania Treasurer Stacy Garrity toured the campus of Grove City College on Wednesday to promote the PA 529 College and Career Savings Program.
The tour of the 180-acre campus was led by College President Paul J. McNulty ’80 and included stops at Harbison Chapel, STEM Hall and the Staley Hall of Arts and Letters. Treasurer Garrity and President McNulty were joined on the tour by a representative from the office of Senator Michele Brooks.
“Grove City College is consistently ranked as one of the best value colleges in the country, and it’s easy to see its appeal. People everywhere are concerned about the cost of higher education, and today more families than ever before are saving with PA 529 accounts. I’m excited to share how useful they can be for every Pennsylvanian who wants to further their education. Opening a PA 529 account is the perfect way to save for a four-year degree, a community college, a technical school or an apprenticeship program,” Garrity said.
“Grove City College appreciates Treasurer Garrity’s leadership in promoting PA 529 accounts. Affordability is one of the College’s three key pillars. Our reasonable cost and extensive financial aid combined with careful financial planning by families make GCC’s excellent education truly achievable,” McNulty said.
Neary 20 percent of Grove City College students use 529 plans to cover tuition payments.
In fiscal year 2020-21, more families than ever before opened PA 529 accounts and saved the most money ever in a single year. Last month, the program reached a new milestone with more than $7 billion in assets. And in September, Treasurer Garrity eliminated the minimum deposit to open a PA 529 account, making it possible for anyone to start saving with as little as one dollar.
There are two PA 529 plans, the PA 529 Investment Plan (IP) and the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan (GSP). PA 529 IP account earnings are based on financial market performance. PA 529 IP account owners can choose from various investment options including target enrollment date portfolios. These options automatically rebalance asset allocation as a child reaches their anticipated enrollment date. The PA 529 IP was recently named a ‘best-in-class’ plan by Morningstar, earning a Silver Rating for the second consecutive year. The PA 529 GSP is a lower-risk option, and earnings are determined by tuition inflation. With PA 529 GSP accounts families pay future tuition at today’s prices.
PA 529 IP and GSP accounts offer great tax benefits including:
- State income tax deductions on contributions (up to $15,000 per beneficiary per year; $30,000 for married couples);
- Contributions grow free of federal and Pennsylvania income taxes;
- No income tax is paid on account growth when used for qualified expenses; and
- Gift and inheritance tax benefits
An added program benefit is that PA 529 account assets do not affect Pennsylvania state financial aid eligibility.
PA 529 accounts can be used to pay for qualified higher education expenses, including tuition, fees, equipment, books, room and board, and other qualified expenses. Accounts can be used at most schools nationwide including community colleges, technical schools, apprenticeship programs and four-year colleges and universities.