Flourtown, PA – Joe Torsella, the Democratic nominee for Pennsylvania State Treasurer, today released his first television ad for the 2016 general campaign. In “Opportunity,” Joe talks about his plan for Keystone Accounts: universal, automatic Children Savings Accounts for every child born in Pennsylvania, designated for college or other post-secondary training.
“I’m running because I think the Treasurer has a vital role to play in rebuilding our middle class, and creating opportunity for every Pennsylvanian,” said Joe Torsella. “There are 150,000 kids born every year in our Commonwealth. I want every single one to grow up saving money, fully participating in the financial system, and planning for a bright future as a college or vocational school graduate.”
As State Treasurer, Joe Torsella will work with Pennsylvania stakeholders — in government, the philanthropic and non-profit sector, and others — to establish universal children saving accounts for every child born in Pennsylvania, seeded at birth with a modest deposit and designated for college or vocational training. The plan is modeled on similar programs underway in Nevada, Maine, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, most of which don’t use public funds. New research suggests that children with bank accounts at birth, even with small balances, are four to seven times as likely to attend college or other post-secondary training. And for those children, a college degree can mean up to a million dollars more in lifetime income.
Traditional 529 savings plans, despite their usefulness, are still underutilized — on average just 4.5% of eligible Pennsylvania families have 529 accounts — and disproportionately benefit higher-income families. “With the third-highest student debt load in the country, and the average four-year degree in the state costing over $45,000, it’s time for Pennsylvania to lead the way in pioneering new ways to help make college or vocational training a reality for students in every zip code,” Torsella said. “As Pennsylvania State Treasurer, I will.”
To Read the Entire Plan Go Here