Saving for College & the Tax Code: A New Spin on the "who Pays for Higher Education?" Debate

Front Cover
Taylor & Francis, 2001 - Business & Economics - 264 pages
Placing the recent rush to use tax incentives as a new source of student financial assistance in both its historical and theoretical contexts, this book documents the rise of tax-advantaged college savings plans and how they signal the shift to solving the challenge of middle-class affordability and its replacement of the twin goals of access and equity as public policy's greatest higher education funding priority. Including an in-depth analysis of the affordability crisis, a detailed encapsulation of the public-versus-private responsibility to pay for higher education debate and its historic roots, and the theoretical studies of student aid and the tax code, the book develops concrete definitions of the various types of tax-advantaged college savings plans, their origin and development and a detailed taxonomy of all such state-sponsored programs in the United States. Unique to this book, the taxonomy is based upon detailed State Profiles of all tax-advantaged college savings plans in existence circa 1999. Building upon the State Profiles and their taxonomic summary, the book analyzes the rhetoric of the documents surrounding each state's program's adoption in order to understand what the state's say such programs mean. Further, each program's characteristics are evaluated against a Continuum of "Publicness" in order to ascertain the state's position regarding the public-versus-private responsibility debate. The results is both a rhetorical and behavioral data set documenting the states' policy position elevating solving the challenge of middle-class affordability above the issues of access and equity. Although the concept of "publicness" is discovered to be highly ambiguous, thebook concludes with a Best Practices description of an ideal tax-advantaged college savings plan that maximizes public responsibility to pay for higher education. Such a program will be of great interest to all policy analysts and public officials concerned about maintaining the historic American commitment to access and equity.
 

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Contents

List of Tables Table I Statesponsored Taxadvantaged College
1
List of Figures
5
Responsibility to Pay for Higher Education Issue p
6
Responsibility Debate and College Savings and
17
Average Tuition and Fees in Current Dollars p
20
Average Tuition and Fees in Constant Dollars p
21
Tuition and Fees as a Percentage of Household Income p
23
Distribution of Financial Aid by Sources p
25
Landscape p
63
The National Context p
64
College Savings Program p
65
States with College Savings Bond Programs p
66
States with Prepaid Tuition Programs p
68
States with College Savings Plan Trusts p
73
State Contributions p
81
State Financial Aid Policies p
85

Higher Educations Benefits p
29
The Rise of TaxAdvantaged College Savings Plans p
47
Chronological Sequence of State Program Inception Dates p
48
Internal Revenue Code Section 529
51
Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 p
56
State Tax Treatment of StateSponsored College Savings Programs p
59
Table XVIII
99
StateSponsored TaxAdvantaged College Savings
120
Directors p
203
Index p
259
Copyright

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