Hundreds of Pennsylvania Employers Helping Employees

- Pennsylvania Treasurer Rob McCord today saluted the hundreds of Pennsylvania employers who are demonstrating appreciation for their employees by helping them address one of their biggest financial concerns – being able to afford college for their kids.

These public, private, and nonprofit employers provide their employees with information on how to save for their loved ones’ future higher education through the Pennsylvania 529 College Savings Program.

“Pennsylvania families are concerned about their ability to afford college costs, and employers are in a unique position to provide important information on how to meet these costs,” Treasurer McCord said. “Today’s employers understand the need to support family finances beyond the paycheck, and by partnering with the Pennsylvania 529 College Savings Program, they have the opportunity to address this growing concern.”

Employers perform a tremendous service just by providing free information to their employees. If they choose, employers may also offer payroll deduction at little to no cost – allowing their employees to make saving automatic. Full service support is provided by PA 529 program specialists who are available to conduct employer-specific webinars, make on-site presentations, help with marketing initiatives, and provide other informational services.

The PA 529 College Savings Program provides two ways to save: the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan (GSP) and the PA 529 Investment Plan (IP). Both plans provide flexibility to pay for college expenses at most higher education institutions across the country. The primary difference between the two plans is the way savings grow.

The PA 529 GSP is designed to help savings grow to meet the future cost of education. When used for qualified higher education expenses, PA 529 GSP contributions grow based on tuition inflation (subject to fees and premiums). For example, someone who saves enough for one semester today at a State System of Higher Education university will have enough for one semester there in the future, no matter when or how much tuition has increased in the meantime.

The second plan, the PA 529 IP, features low fees and more than a dozen conservative and aggressive investment options from The Vanguard Group, one of the nation’s largest financial services companies.

Contributions to a PA 529 plan are deductible from Pennsylvania income taxes (up to $14,000 per beneficiary, or up to $28,000 for married couples provided each individual has income of at least the amount deducted). They grow tax free, and when used for qualified educational expenses, earnings are federal and state tax exempt.

The PA 529 is not limited to traditional higher education students. Accounts can be used by people of any age. If an employee is interested in advancement, and additional course work would provide that opportunity, a PA 529 account could be used to fund the employee’s own education.

“An educated and skilled workforce is critical to the future of Pennsylvania,” Treasurer McCord said. “Employers that offer the PA 529 in the workplace will help make the pursuit of higher education more affordable and accessible for their employees.”

The treasurer added families that wish to learn more about the benefits of a 529 plan on their own can view free college savings webinars at http://PA529.COM
The online presentations also allow users to have their questions answered by a PA 529 college savings expert.
For more information, visit http://PA529.COM or call 1-800-440-4000 to open an account, make a contribution, or get more information about the PA 529 Employer Partner Program.

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