State treasurer says plan still frozen, audit results awaited

At a Senate Finance Committee meeting Thursday, State Treasurer Lynn Fitch updated lawmakers about the status of the program, which is still in limbo and would need $94 million to break even.

“We’re hoping we can get the information back … and plan to get it into a better position,” Fitch said.

To the relief of some , Fitch assured senators she would not be asking them for $94 million.

Fitch said MPACT has approximately 22,000 families enrolled, which includes college reserve funds for children ranging from very young to college aged. Prior to freezing enrollment, 1,500 families were joining the program a year, she said.

State Sen. Will Longwitz, R-Madison, asked Fitch when and why the treasury decided to look into MPACT.

“I was promoting this in April of this year to students, schools and parents,” Longwitz said. “Am I in trouble now?”

Fitch said that in April, the treasury wasn’t aware MPACT needed to maintain a return on its investments of 7.8 percent but only yielded 0.6 percent last year. The average return for 15 years on the program has been about 4.3 percent, Fitch said.

Clarion Ledger
11/12/12