Maryland 529 Board chairman resigns amid issues related to account calculations

Maryland's 529 Board Chairman is stepping down amid issues with the system that has left hundreds of parents not knowing how much money is in their college savings accounts.

On Friday, the Maryland 529 Board released a statement indicating that Chairman Peter Tsirigotis has stepped down.

The announcement of Tsirigotis stepping down, comes one day after lawmakers in Annapolis held a hearing to speak with parents about the issue pertaining to their Maryland 529 college savings accounts. During the hearing, parents spoke about their frustrations with being unable to access their fund and said misstatements from the Maryland 529 system led them to believe there was more money in their children's savings accounts than there actually was.

As a result, some families say they will have to tough conversation with their children about their college decisions.

The University System of Maryland, which oversees the state's public colleges and universities, said they are well aware of the problem.

Maryland 529's Executive Director Anthony Savia says the error occurred while distributing additional earnings to account-holders in 2021. He says the calculation for distributing those earnings was inaccurately reported and had to be corrected by compliance. The error impacted at least 480 account-holders. 

To help, officials are working with students and families to help reduce the hardships that losing access to their accounts has created.

Savia says his team has addressed the situation with 419 of the impacted accounts.

You can read the Maryland 529 Board's full statement on Tsirigotis stepping down below:

"The Maryland 529 Board and staff would like to thank Peter Tsirigotis for his dedication and service as the Maryland 529 Board Chair and wish him well in future endeavors. Vice Chairman, Geoffrey Newman, will serve as the interim Board chair until a new chairperson is elected at the February 23, 2023 Board meeting."