NEW YORK (August 5, 2014) -- Surrounded by supporters from Autism Speaks and other national disabilities organizations, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today urged Congress to move quickly on the ABLE Act which would allow tax-free savings accounts for Americans with disabilities.
“Caring for some of our most vulnerable disabled children, and managing the huge financial cost that comes along with that care, must be a top priority for everyone, and not just their families," said Schumer. "Creating tax-advantaged savings accounts, similar to IRAs, will allow parents to put away more money for their disabled child, without losing key government disability services and benefits that they need now.
"Unfortunately, cases of autism and other disabilities are on the rise and passing this bipartisan legislation is more important than ever," he added. "I’m strongly urging my colleagues to get on board with this plan and pass this bill.”
Sponsored by Sen. Robert Casey (D-PA) and Rep. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL) in the House, the ABLE Act (S.313) would authorize the creation of Section 529 tax-free savings accounts to cover the medical, housing, educational, transportation and other expenses for people with disabilities. Crenshaw's House bill (HR.647) was reported out of the House Ways and Means Committee last week and awaits a floor vote when Congress returns from its August recess.
ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) Act has 75 cosponsors in the Senate and 380 in the House.
Autism Speaks President Liz Feld said, "Children with autism grow up to be adults with autism and they have challenges and needs across their lifespan and they change as they grow. A medical savings account that is tax-free is going to allow parents to plan, to save and to provide for their children long after they're gone."
In addition to Autism Speaks, representatives from the National Down Syndrome Society, the National Fragile X Foundation, and the United Cerebral Palsy of New York City.