By Treasurer David McRae
I came into the role of Mississippi Treasurer with the intention of making state government work a little more like a business – and from Day One, we got to work doing exactly that.
Internally, we made simple technology upgrades (such as laptops instead of desktop computers) that allow our team to be more mobile and have greater access to the communities we serve. We also gave treasury.ms.gov a face lift, ensuring it was more user friendly, relatable, and transparent.
Those small tweaks have enabled our team to move faster and do more, but they aren’t the only modernizations we undertook.
The State Treasurer has three core responsibilities: manage the state’s cash flow, distribute unclaimed money, and administer College Savings Mississippi. I’m proud to say each area has received a much-needed update.
First, we modernized the state’s investment strategies, saving taxpayers tens of millions of dollars in the process and helping protect Mississippi’s strong credit ratings.
Second, we rolled out a new e-claims system that allows Mississippians to complete the unclaimed money process entirely online. This has helped us boost returns to more than $70 million over the last four years, an economic stimulus that didn’t cost taxpayers a penny. To search for your own unclaimed money, visit treasury.ms.gov/search.
Finally, and most recently, we rolled out a free, integrated prepaid debit card program for Mississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS) account holders. Now, whether account holders are purchasing textbooks, education-related technology, or even their college meal plan, MACS funds can be accessed with a simple swipe of their MACS529 Mastercard Prepaid Card – in store or online!
For those unfamiliar with MACS, it is a tax-advantaged college savings plan that is administered by the State Treasury. Accounts can be opened with a contribution of just $25 and the saved funds can be used for a variety of education-related expenses at most learning levels – from elementary private school tuition to apprenticeship programs to four-year colleges and even continued learning. The funds within these accounts grow over time, and there are some tax advantages on the interest earned that most families can take advantage of! To learn more, please visit treasury.ms.gov/macs.
These changes are not the end of my work to modernize your State Treasury; more will always need to be done. But I’m committed to continually evolving our services and processes to make them more efficient and accessible for all Mississippians.
Mississippi Treasurer David McRae is the 55th Treasurer for the State of Mississippi. In this role, he helps manage the state’s cash flow, oversees College Savings Mississippi, and has returned nearly $65 million in unclaimed money to Mississippians. For more information, visit Treasury.MS.gov.