Dear friends and neighbors,

As the father of four daughters, I know how stressful it can feel when planning to save for college. What families need are options. That’s why this session I co-sponsored Senate Bill 6601, which establishes the Washington College Savings Program. This bill creates a 529 defined-contribution savings plan that will work in concert with the state’s Guaranteed Education Tuition (GET) program.

SB 6601 also has provisions designed to inform families how the two savings options can work together to provide a more robust college savings plan. This makes it simple for people who want to move money from one plan to another. Right now it is a complex process if a family wants to transfer GET dollars into a different savings program. With this legislation, all it will take is a click of a button.

We need to make it as easy as possible for families in Washington to save money for college. Similar savings accounts have been successful in other states. Now it’s Washington’s turn to implement this smart and simple proposal so families can pick the savings plans that best help them invest in their children’s future.

At the beginning of the legislative session, I encountered resistance from several Republican Higher Education Committee members about creating a state savings plan, so having the bill pass the Senate with a unanimous vote was a major accomplishment. SB 6601 now heads to the House for further consideration. I am confident this bill will be signed into law before the end of the legislative session.