01.26.17

Burr Celebrates Launch of NC Program to Help Children with Disabilities

WASHINGTON – Today, the state of North Carolina launched its ABLE account program. The North Carolina program was authorized by Senator Burr's Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act.

“This is an important day for the families of children with disabilities,” said Senator Burr. “ABLE accounts are a game changer for people living with disabilities. Now families will be able to save to give their children a better future. The ABLE program is an example of what is working in Washington, what we can accomplish when we work together on programs that improve people’s lives.”

Amy Wright, the founder and CEO of Bitty & Beau’s coffee, a Wilmington business that provides employment opportunities to people with intellectual disabilities, celebrated the launch by setting up ABLE accounts for two of her children who have Down syndrome.

"If you know us, our family, our business, then you know how much the NC ABLE Program means to us,” said Amy Wright. “This morning, we explained to Bitty and Beau that starting today they can save for the future just like their older sisters.  Beau said he plans to buy a house one day. We love that he understands how important this is!"

The ABLE Act created tax-free savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. The law eases the financial strain faced by individuals with disabilities and their families by making tax-free savings accounts available to cover qualified expenses such as education, housing, medical, and transportation. The ABLE Act supplements, but not supplants, benefits provided through private insurance, the Medicaid program, the beneficiary's employment, and other sources.

North Carolina enacted legislation implementing the ABLE program in 2015. Families interested in creating an ABLE account should contact the North Carolina Treasurer’s office.