<nobr>Dec 22, 2005</nobr>
White House Conference on Aging Retirement Planning Resolutions
The White House Conference on Aging (WHCoA) adjourned on December 14 after approving several retirement resolutions that will be included in the final report to the president and Congress. ERIC was well represented at the conference with the largest delegation of any employer group, including ERIC President Mark Ugoretz, Senior Vice President Janice Gregory and Vice President Edwina Rogers.
In August, ERIC, together with the American Benefits Council, International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, Employee Employee Benefit Research Institute, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, and World at Work, submitted a joint report to the conference detailing three priority issues for conference delegates to consider. These issues were barriers to the implementation and maintenance of defined benefit pension plans, barriers to and incentives for greater and more effective employee participation in defined contribution retirement plans, and escalating health care costs and barriers to funding for retiree health care needs.
The Policy Committee of the White House Conference presented several of the recommended solutions to these issues to conference delegates who selected some for inclusion in the top 50 issues that will be included in the report to the president and Congress.
Several retirement planning recommendation will be outlined in the report including automatic enrollment, automatic increases in contributions, and easy rollovers to individual retirement accounts for defined contribution plans; tax incentives to increase retirement savings; incentives for older workers to continue working; and removal of barriers to the retention and hiring of older workers. Conference delegates also included incentives for saving early in one's life such as a $1,000 birth account funded by the Federal Government.
The majority of delegates appeared to reflect groups working on behalf of the already aged and the conference resolutions tended to reflect programs benefiting that group rather than proposals to ensure preparation for retirement.
ERIC will continue to work with WHCoA officials to ensure that the report to the President includes health and retirement security goals.
Joint Report to the White House Conference on Aging
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