Prepaid college tuition debate - - Jackson, MS

Prepaid college tuition debate

 By Howard Ballou - bio | email

Jackson, MS (WLBT)- Some heated exchanges in a house budget committee hearing at the state capitol today.

House Appropriations Chairman Johnny Stringer subpoenaed the actuary for the Mississippi Prepaid Affordable College Tuition Plan or M-PACT to get answers about the health of the program.

Mike Brister, who charges 300-dollars an hour, refused to come before lawmakers without additional pay to answer questions about his financial reports, prompting Stringer to subpoena Brister.

Representative Steve Holland said, "We're not interested in but one thing; that the program is sound; that we offer the citizens of this state. I personally have my granddaughters' college tuition paid. I gave it to her on her first birthday. I want to make sure it's there. She's five now. I wanna make sure it's there when she goes to state university in about 15 years."

State Treasurer Tate Reeves, who's office runs the program, maintains M-PACT is stable despite tuition hikes, fee increases and a weak economy.

Reeves called the subpoena a political ploy by Stringer and House Education Committee Chairman Cecil Brown.

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