- Associated Press - Thursday, October 1, 2015

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The Michigan Legislature is voting to let residents with disabilities open tax-free savings accounts to pay for long-term needs such as education and housing.

The accounts would offer tax advantages similar to 529 college savings plans. The House unanimously approved half of a four-bill package Thursday.

Families could deposit up to $14,000 annually.

Under another bill pending in the House, Michigan would disregard the accounts when determining if someone with disabilities has too many assets to qualify for public assistance.

A 2014 federal law lets states establish Achieving a Better Life Experience, or ABLE, accounts. Advocates called it the most sweeping national legislation to help the disabled in a quarter century.

Another pending bill would raise the maximum account balance in Michigan’s 529 account program from $235,000 to $500,000.

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