The Bipartisan Policy Center on Thursday released a 12-point proposal for improving retirement security and personal savings levels, starting with more access to workplace retirement savings plans.
The center's 19-member Commission on Retirement Security and Personal Savings, representing experts in politics, economics, academia and elsewhere, spent two years studying the issues, and “no relevant policy idea was off limits,” said James B. Lockhart III and Kent Conrad, commission co-chairmen, in the report.
The commission calls for the creation of new, multiple employer retirement plans so small employers could outsource those operations, and expansion of the federal MyRA program. Under the proposal, by 2020, employers with 50 or more workers not currently offering retirement plans would have to enroll them in either the new multiple employer retirement plan or MyRA.
For existing workplace retirement plans, the commission calls for tax incentives to increase automatic enrollment and escalation with higher default rates, and simpler non-discrimination testing rules. Another idea would create voluntary lifetime income plans as an alternative to multiemployer defined benefit plans, with some defined contribution features.
The commission also looked at ways to address retirement security, including account leakage, longevity, financial literacy and the solvency of Social Security.
American Benefits Council President James A. Klein said it will take time to assess all the recommendations, but he commended the report for its focus on “practical, achievable solutions,” and its bipartisan tone.
The report, “Securing Our Financial Future: Recommendations for Retirement Security and Personal Savings” is on BPC's website.