In July of this year, the Washington legislature approved a reduction of the state’s colleges and university tuition. Beginning in the 2015-2016 academic year, tuition will decrease by 5%, and then fall another 10% by the 2016-2017 academic year. This is great news for college students attending in state institutions, however many people were concerned about the effect this would have on those who invested their education savings in the Washington State Guaranteed Education Tuition (GET) program.
On September 2, 2015 the GET program released a statement concerning the future of the program and concluded the following:
1) Based on the recent passage of the College Affordability Act, effective September 2, 2015 the payout value for the GET program will remain $117.82 per unit until the time when one year of resident undergraduate tuition and state mandated fees at Washington State’s highest priced public university surpasses $11,782.
2) Based on the recent passage of the College Affordability Act, effective September 2, 2015 and through December 15, 2016, the GET program will waive all state program refund fees and the two-year hold requirement for all account owners.
3) Based on the recent passage of the College Affordability Act, effective September 2, 2015 and through December 15, 2016, the GET program will permit account owners to receive a refund of their contributions or the payout value, whichever is greater. These refunds are available for a tax-free rollover to a 529 education savings plan.
To learn more about our recommendations on Washington’s GET program select Soundmark’s Advice on GET Program