TALLAHASSEE, FL. (WTXL) - Thousands of Floridians with pre-paid tuition plans will see a drop in their payments.
The Florida prepaid college board approved lowering the program's prices and refunding nearly $200 million. The new law, aimed at holding down higher-education costs will go to about 18,000 families.
The announcement came as prices were set for the 2014-2015 open-enrollment period, which starts October 15th. The program is designed to allow families to pay years in advance and lock in the costs of sending students to state colleges or universities.
This spring lawmakers approved a measure that would put a cap on the fund's payments to colleges and universities, rolling back a "differential tuition" law, which allowed university tuition increases of as much as 15% a year.
Florida prepaid executive Director Kevin Thompson says, prices for newly purchased plans will decrease as much as 50% from last year.
“You take, for example, a family that bought in recent years. They might have paid $350 per month for a newborn plan. Now you can buy that same plan for $173 per month. So, it's significant savings for them."
Thompson expects many more parents to enroll in Florida prepaid program now that rates have dropped.
Families that purchased plans in recent years at higher prices will see their payments reduced or will receive refunds if they are paid in full.