Consultant warns of Ala. prepaid tuition shortfall

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A financial consultant says Alabama's Prepaid Affordable College Tuition program is millions of dollars short of having enough money to pay its estimated future expenses.

Daniel Sherman, a consulting actuary in Boston with Buck Consultants, said Wednesday that the program as of Sept. 30 was $269 million short of being fully funded. Buck Consultants is the program's actuarial firm.

Sherman told board members that if nothing is done, he estimates the program will not have enough money to pay estimated tuition costs starting in the 2016 fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1, 2015.

Sherman said unexpectedly high tuition hikes and the change in assumed future tuition increases account for most of the shortfall.