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Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel and the Arizona Department of Economic Security Announce Launch of AZ ABLE for Individuals with Disabilities

Arizona Becomes Tenth State to Launch Partner Program with Ohio’s STABLE Accounts

COLUMBUS – Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel and the Arizona Department of Economic Security announced today the launch of AZ ABLE, tax-free savings accounts for eligible individuals with disabilities, powered by Ohio’s STABLE Accounts.  With this partnership, Arizona becomes the tenth state to launch a partner program with Ohio’s STABLE Accounts.

STABLE Accounts are made possible by the federal Achieving a Better Life Experience (“ABLE”) Act passed by Congress in 2014.  STABLE Accounts allow individuals with disabilities the opportunity to save and invest money without losing eligibility for certain public benefits programs, like Medicaid, SSI or SSDI.  Earnings in STABLE Accounts are not subject to federal income tax, so long as funds are spent on qualified disability expenses.

On June 1, 2016, Ohio became the first state in the country to offer enrollment for eligible individuals living with disabilities. As a national leader in this initiative, the Treasurer’s office has been working with other states to offer STABLE Accounts to individuals with disabilities across the country.  With the launch, Arizona becomes the tenth state to launch a partner program with Ohio’s STABLE Accounts, following Kentucky, Vermont, Missouri, Georgia, South Carolina, New Hampshire, New Mexico, West Virginia and Wyoming. 

“As Treasurer of Ohio I am proud to serve as administrator of STABLE Accounts,” said Treasurer Mandel.  “By assisting individuals and families with saving and investing, we are supporting persons with disabilities to maintain health, independence and quality of life.”

“AZ ABLE will give individuals with disabilities and their family members another option on the pathway to a successful life, unimpeded by the fear for some of losing the public support upon which they rely,” said DES Director Michael Trailor. “The program will serve as an additional source of empowerment to remove a barrier that can prevent individuals from preparing for the future.”

 Under the federal ABLE legislation, which was signed into law on December 19, 2014 with strong bipartisan support, each state is responsible for establishing and operating ABLE accounts.  On July 16, 2015, Governor John Kasich signed into law HB 155, which passed unanimously by both the Ohio House and Senate, authorizing the Treasurer’s Office to open and administer these accounts. 

In Arizona, H.B. 2388, signed into law on May 12, 2016, established the Arizona ABLE Program, managed by the Department of Economic Security (DES), and the ABLE Act Oversight Committee.  DES, in conjunction with the Arizona ABLE Act Oversight Committee, selected a partnership with the Ohio Treasurer’s office as a high-quality and cost efficient way to bring an ABLE Account savings program to Arizona residents.

AZ ABLE will be administered through the Ohio Treasurer’s office and will function similarly to Ohio’s STABLE Accounts. 

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