Bill Would Allow Tax Benefits for K-12 Tuition

Unicameral Information Office

Educational savings plan trust accounts could be used to pay private school tuition under a bill heard March 4 by the Revenue Committee.

The trust provides tax-advantaged 529 accounts meant to encourage saving for postsecondary education. Contributions grow tax-deferred and are exempt from state and federal taxes as long as they are used for a beneficiary’s qualified higher education expenses. Individuals may claim a state income tax deduction equal to contributions they make to an account, up to $5,000 for those married filing separately and $10,000 for other filers.

Under Legislative Bill 681, introduced by Elkhorn Sen. Lou Ann Linehan, owners could use their accounts to pay for qualified expenses at eligible postsecondary educational institutions and up to $10,000 in elementary and secondary school tuition per beneficiary per taxable year.

Linehan said 38 states and the District of Columbia allow 529 accounts to be used for elementary and secondary education after a federal tax change in 2017. She said that Nebraska should join those states, partly to attract young parents, who are using 529 accounts to save for their children’s education more than previous generations.

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