NPC Newsmaker Program: Harkin to Unveil Legislation to Address Retirement Crisis, Rebuild Private Pension System

Jan 27, 2014, 14:53 ET from National Press Club

WASHINGTON, Jan. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- At a Newsmakers news conference at the National Press Club on Thursday, January 30th, U.S. Senator Tom Harkin, Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, will unveil bold new legislation to tackle the growing retirement crisis and rebuild the private pension system. The current retirement income deficit has reached at least $6.6 trillion—leaving many Americans vastly unprepared for retirement—and 75 million Americans do not have a retirement plan. Half of all Americans have less than $10,000 in savings.


The Universal, Secure, and Adaptable (USA) Retirement Funds Act of 2014 would create a new type of privately run retirement plan that combines the advantages of traditional pensions—including lifetime income benefits and pooled, professional management—with the portability and ease for employers of a 401(k). 

Mary Kay Henry, president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), as well as Denise Bowyer, vice president at Texas-based American Income Life and National Income Life Insurance Companies, will join Harkin to discuss how the USA Retirement Funds Act would give middle-class families the opportunity to earn a secure retirement benefit that they can take with them as they change jobs and that they cannot outlive.  Importantly, the USA Retirement Funds Act would also make it simple for employers to offer a benefit without having to take on risk or administrative burden. 

Harkin's legislation follows a July 2012 report examining the nation's burgeoning retirement crisis, which found that one of the main causes behind the crisis is that people who work for small businesses lack access to quality, low-cost retirement plans. As HELP Chairman for the last four years, Harkin has also convened ten hearings to study and discuss retirement security and ways to tackle the retirement crisis.

Live audio of the news conference will be available on the NPC website at

This NPC Newsmaker news conference is scheduled to take place on Thursday, January 30  at 10 a.m. in the Club's Zenger Room, on the 13th floor of the National Press Building at 529 14th St. NW, Washington DC, 20045.

Contact: Herb Perone, NPC Newsmakers Chair, 301-512-7636

SOURCE National Press Club