Rod Blagojevich Signs Jack Franks’ Bill Making College Savnigs Program Better

It looks as if Governor Rod Blagojevich (D-Chicago) decided not to take his dislike of State Rep. Jack Franks on a bill favored by newly-elected State Treasurer Alexi Gianoullisa (D-Chicago).

And the bill will cost Illinois state government tax revenues. It allows income tax deductions for parental investments for college education, even if they are not made in Illinois’ Bright Start program.

Franks (D-Bull Valley) sent the following press release about a recent bill signing:

Governor Signs Franks’ and Gianoullias’ Bill to Give Illinois Families More College Savings Options

Illinois Bright Start College Savings Program will now be competitive with other states

WOODSTOCK, IL- Illinois families will have more flexibility to invest in college savings programs for their children now that legislation authored by State Rep. Jack Franks and State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias was signed into law.

“Illinois provides parents with excellent opportunities to help them save for their children’s college costs, but state investment programs were not functioning as efficiently as possible,” Franks said.

“The State Treasurer and I designed House Bill 376 to make Illinois’ college savings programs competitive with other state’s. Now that the Governor has signed our bill into law, Illinois will lead the nation in helping our families invest in saving for their children’s futures.”

The cost of tuition has tripled in the last 20 years and it now costs an average of $13,000 per year to send a child to a public university and $30,000 for a student to attend a private college. House Bill 376 increases the contribution limit to the state’s Bright Start savings and investment program and makes out-of-state college savings plan distributions eligible for an income tax deduction in Illinois.

Formerly, Illinoisans did not receive an income tax deduction for investments they made in other state’s college savings programs.

Now, families may take advantage of other state’s college savings programs with an income tax deduction for their investment. The change will force the Illinois Bright Start College Savings Program to compete with other states in offering competitive rates and incentives for investing in college savings.

The new law is effective immediately and will have a great impact on the State Treasurer’s Office who administers the program.

For more information on the legislation, please contact Franks’ constituent service office at 815-334-0063, or visit the General Assembly’s website at

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