2.8 Million New York City Residents To Get Retirement Coverage

Link: https://www.forbes.com/sites/teresaghilarducci/2021/05/19/28-million-new-york-city-residents-to-get-retirement-coverage/?sh=5cbd24fb5d4a

Excerpt:

At the end of April, the New York City Council took a bold step and approved a city-sponsored retirement plan for private-sector employees who do not have retirement coverage at work, creating the city’s first ‘auto-IRA’ (individual retirement account). SCEPA’s Retirement Equity Lab, which testified in support of the policy, estimated the New York auto IRA plan will provide coverage to 2.8 million city workers that today have none. 

Mayor de Blasio signed the bill last week implementing the city’s auto-IRA program.

The NYC Auto IRA Bill Is Well- Designed

Employers with more than five employees will have to automatically deduct a percentage of their workers’ pay and forward it to city-facilitated, not-for-profit IRAs. (Employers with less than five employees, self employed, and gig workers need to voluntarily join.) Auto IRA account’s are individually-owned and professionally managed, and administered by an independent board headed by city-appointed trustees. While employers are required to participate, employees would have the right to change their contribution rates or opt-out of the program. The plan is also portable; participants can maintain their accounts when they change jobs. 

Author(s): Teresa Ghilarduci

Publication Date: 19 May 2021

Publication Site: Forbes

Can States Be Trusted To Manage Retirement Savings? Two New Reasons For Concern

Link: https://www.forbes.com/sites/ebauer/2021/02/28/can-states-be-trusted-to-manage-retirement-savings-two-new-reasons-for-concern/

Excerpt:

Readers, I have long been of the opinion that it’s a sensible approach to enable savers to choose among multiple retirement funds, so that they are able to reflect their particular ethical concerns, whether this means an “ESG” (environmental, social, and governance-issue focused) fund or a religious-screening approach, such as excluding companies which donate to Planned Parenthood (Ave Maria Funds) or which are in the alcohol industry (GuideStone Funds).

But no state official should be using investors’ money to play politics — not the money of individual investors through state-run IRAs or the retirement savings accounts of state employees, and not the money of public pension funds. And, frankly, I find it appalling that these sorts of actions aren’t universally considered to be wholly out of bounds — but I suppose living in Illinois (newly-declared the third-most-corrupt state, with Chicago as the most-corrupt city), I suppose I should lower my expectations. Readers in the remaining 49 states, however, should watch carefully.

Author(s): Elizabeth Bauer

Publication Date: 28 February 2021

Publication Site: Forbes

Wisconsin Treasurer Recommends Creating State-Run Retirement Plan

Link: https://www.ai-cio.com/news/wisconsin-treasurer-recommends-creating-state-run-retirement-plan/

Excerpt:

A task force headed by Wisconsin’s state treasurer has recommended that Wisconsin establish a state-run program that provides a retirement benefit plan for employers that don’t offer one.

The task force, which was created by Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers in 2019, issued a report outlining the causes of the state’s “retirement security crisis” and provided several recommendations it said would strengthen the financial security of Wisconsin’s retirees.

“Wisconsin is in trouble when it comes to retirement security,” the task force’s report began ominously. “Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, our retirement system was not working for a significant number of Wisconsin workers.”

Author(s): Michael Katz

Publication Date: 24 February 2021

Publication Site: ai-CIO

States push ahead on private-sector initiatives

Link: https://www.pionline.com/retirement-plans/states-push-ahead-private-sector-initiatives

Excerpt:

To date, 12 states and Seattle have enacted retirement savings programs for private-sector workers. They include OregonSaves with more than 90,000 funded accounts and $92 million in assets, the Illinois Secure Choice retirement savings program with $52.6 million and 82,852 funded accounts, and the $38 million CalSavers Retirement Savings Program that as of February had enrolled 274,024 participants, with another enrollment phase coming up.

The predominant model is an auto IRA, in which employer participation is required if no plan is already offered. Other options are a voluntary payroll deduction Roth IRA, a multiple employer plan, and a service provider marketplace, or a hybrid.

Author(s): Hazel Bradford

Publication Date: 22 February 2021

Publication Site: Pensions & Investments

Wisconsin Task Force Recommends State-run Retirement Plan

Link: https://www.asppa-net.org/news/wisconsin-task-force-recommends-state-run-retirement-plan

Excerpt:

If the recommendations of the Wisconsin Retirement Security Task Force are followed, the Dairy State could join others that have implemented a state-run plan to provide coverage for workers whose employers do not offer a retirement plan.

The task force, headed by Wisconsin State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, issued its report on Feb. 10. The task force makes a variety of recommendations, including establishing a state-run program dubbed “WisconsinSaves.” Gov. Tony Evers (D) had signed Executive Order 45 on Sept. 16, 2019, creating the task force to address retirement security in the state.

The Situation

“Wisconsin is in trouble when it comes to retirement security,” says the report, adding that “even before the COVID-19 pandemic, our retirement system was not working for a significant number of Wisconsin workers.” It notes that in 1983, traditional pension plans covered 62% of employees in Wisconsin, but that by 2016, that had shrunk to 17% of them. In addition, the task force says, AARP found that:

Author(s): JOHN IEKEL

Publication Date: 16 February 2021

Publication Site: ASPPA