For Immediate Release
Washington, DC – The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) today submitted comments with the New York City Council regarding proposed bill Int. 0888-2018, that would establish a retirement savings program for private-sector employees.
ERIC supports proposals and programs run by states and localities designed to promote and facilitate retirement saving by those employed by an employer that does not provide a retirement plan, but has concerns about how the proposed program overlaps and connects with the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), the federal law that already governs the administration of private-sector retirement plans.
ERIC’s comments focused on several aspects of the proposed bill that directly conflict with ERISA or place additional burdens on employers already providing retirement plans to their employees. Most important to ERIC members, who all offer ERISA-qualified retirement plans, is for an employer to be automatically exempt from the program if it provides a retirement plan to employees in accordance with ERISA. ERIC also asked the Council to change the program eligibility criteria, so that it does not directly contradict current federal laws and regulations. Employers should be able to determine eligibility in a retirement plan under federal laws and not alter requirements based on state and local programs.
“For employers that already provide a retirement plan in compliance with federal ERISA law, it is important that they be able to design plans that work effectively and efficiently based on the needs of their workforces and the industries in which they operate. We strongly encourage the Council to revise its proposal to ensure that no additional burdens are imposed on employers that are already providing a qualified retirement plan to employees,” said Annette Guarisco Fildes, president and CEO, ERIC. “ERIC is willing to work with the Council to provide recommendations, using current available data that will assist the program in determining which employers already provide a retirement plan.”
ERIC previously sued the Oregon Retirement Savings Board (ORSB) on ERISA preemption grounds over the employer reporting requirement imposed by Oregon’s state-run mandatory retirement plan, OregonSaves. In its complaint, ERIC argued that ERISA preempts the OregonSaves reporting requirements imposed on employers that already provide an ERISA retirement plan to their Oregon employees. ERIC and the ORSB settled in March of this year.
To read ERIC’s comments to the New York City Council, click here.