Senate Finance Committee Chairman William V. Roth Jr., R-Del., joined the fight to drop a provision from the Senate version of bankruptcy reform legislation that would end protection for retirement assets in a bankruptcy proceeding.
In a letter sent yesterday afternoon to Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Administrative Oversight and the Courts, Mr. Roth expressed concern about the potential impact that this provision will have on the retirement plans that Americans depend upon for security in the older years. Mr. Roth also noted that because current tax law protects retirement plan assets from creditors in bankruptcy proceedings, any change in the law would fall under the jurisdiction of the Senate Finance Committee, not the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Mr. Grassley is on the Senate Judiciary subcommittee responsible for the legislation and, as a likely member of the conference committee that will thrash out differences with similar legislation in the House, will help determine the final version of the legislation.
There is no similar provision in the bankruptcy bill passed by the House.
Sen. Jim Jeffords, R-Vt., chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, announced a hearing on the provision tomorrow. Mr. Jeffords said he will seek to strike the provision.