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Fitch suspends state's prepaid college tuition program

JACKSON — State Treasurer Lynn Fitch has told lawmakers that she suspended the state’s prepaid college tuition program because it is struggling financially and an audit will show whether it needs to be overhauled or scrapped, as many other states with similar programs have done.

Fitch appeared yesterday before the Joint Legislative Budget Committee.

Until the audit is completed, Fitch says the Mississippi Prepaid Affordable College Tuition program will not enroll any new participants.

Fitch said MPACT, which has 22,293 families enrolled, is only 76.8 percent funded, leaving a $94 million shortfall. She said investment earnings last year were only 0.6 percent.

Actuaries say it must earn 7.8 percent a year to stay in the black, with college tuition increasing about 7 percent a year.

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