For Immediate Release - June 18, 2013

Grossman Advocates for Tax Form Donation Option to Help Support Financial Literacy Trust Fund

Move Would Encourage Voluntary Contributions to Help Fund Financial Education

             Treasurer Steven Grossman today testified before the Joint Committee on Revenue to urge support for legislation that would make it possible for Massachusetts citizens to donate a portion of their annual taxes to the Financial Literacy Trust Fund (FLTF).

            “Financial literacy is one of my key priorities as Treasurer, and funding efforts to ensure that more people understand the fundamentals of personal finance is critical,” said Grossman.  “By creating this voluntary donation initiative on tax forms, we would provide direct assistance to populations most in need of financial education, such as schoolchildren, single moms, veterans and senior citizens.”

            Under Senate Bill 1337, Massachusetts residents would be able to check a box on their state tax forms that would donate an amount of their choosing to the FLTF.  The legislation was sponsored by Senator Barry Finegold (D-Andover). 

            The FLTF is an independent body chaired by Grossman that has developed a state-wide strategic policy for enhancing financial literacy and raises funds to implement its goal of educating historically underserved populations on smart saving and budgeting practices.  The Trust Fund, which is governed by a twenty-member board comprised of elected officials, business leaders, and financial literacy advocates, was created by the Legislature in 2011. 

             Since its inception, the FLTF has received or been pledged over $80,000 in funding.  Its board is presently in the process of awarding up to $20,000 in grants to tax-exempt organizations to fund programs to help educate senior citizens on financial matters.

            Grossman has made financial literacy a priority in his administration.  He has attended and promoted a series of associated seminars through his Office of Financial Education, including Money Conferences in a number of Massachusetts Gateway Cities and fiscal “Reality Fairs,” where high school students participate in a series of simulated exercises and scenarios surrounding budgeting and saving.  His advocacy also led in part to the creation of the FLTF.