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Legislature to study best ways for workers to save more for retirement

Thanks to the work of AARP advocates and legislative champions including bill co-sponsors Bobby Hanig, Stephen Ross and Jon Hardister, North Carolina is working to find easier ways companies can offer payroll deduction savings options to employees and what type of savings plan will work best for North Carolina workers and small businesses.

AARP North Carolina Manager of Advocacy Lisa Riegel explains, “Whether or not people are saving for retirement largely depends on where they work. Employees who have the ability to save for their retirements through 401Ks and automatic payroll deductions are 15 times more likely to save than those without that option. Building greater wealth not only helps workers live more securely in their retirements, it also saves the state hundreds of millions of dollars in money spent on programs to assist limited-income older adults.”

According to SmartAsset, which looked at federal statistics from the General Accounting Office, “Around half of American households have no retirement savings at all and around 29% of households age 55 and older have neither retirement savings nor a pension.”

H 604, the Small Business Retirement Savings Program passed unanimously in both the House and Senate and sets up a 10-member Joint Legislative Study Committee on Small Business Retirement Options to be made up of the specified membership and appointments.

“Not only has AARP been the force behind raising awareness that more needs to be done to improve savings, it worked tirelessly over the past few years to educate lawmakers about various plan options and what a growing number of states have been doing to help more small businesses offer workers savings options,” Riegel added.

“Now it is up to North Carolina to determine what plan works best in the Tar Heel State,” she said. “However, AARP will continue to play a role in facilitating Committee meetings, sharing information with all stakeholders, and pushing for a new program to be enacted into law.”

Among the tasks of the Committee will be studying ways the State can reduce the burden on small businesses that want to offer payroll deduction retirement savings options to employees, and optimal oversight for any proposed retirement program.

AARP is conveneing the first meeting of the study committee on October 24. Videos of the presentations will be available here on by November 1.

The Committee is required to report to the Speaker of the House, President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and Fiscal Research Division by March 31, 2020.

Close up of savings jars with money

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