Write To Members of Congress To Tell Them To Make Improvements To Pension Reform Legislation

March 11, 2006

From: Jim Norby, NRLN President

This may well be the most important letter that I ever ask you to write to members of Congress.

As you know, on November 16, 2005, the U.S. Senate passed by a vote of 97-2 The Pension Security and Transparency Act of 2005 (S.1783) and on December 15, 2005, the U.S. House of Representatives passed by a vote of 294-132 The Pension Preservation Act of 2005 (H.R. 2830). Conferees have recently been named for the joint House and Senate conference committee on pension reform legislation. It is the job of these conferees to work out the differences in the two bills and make any other changes they deem appropriate before sending a revised bill back to the House and Senate for final votes.

The National Retiree Legislative Network feels strongly there must be improvements made during the conference committee process in order to strengthen the protection for retirees’ pensions. Therefore, I want to urge you to go to the ACTION ALERT page on the NRLN website at http://capwiz.com/abtr/home and use the sample letters provided to send a clear messages to members of Congress. On the ACTION ALERT page you will see the following headline: MAKE IMPROVEMENTS TO PENSION REFORM LEGISLATION.

After you Click on the "CLICK HERE," below the headline you will be requested to type in your zip code. Your zip code will identify whether any of your legislators are conferees. If so, you’ll be presented a "targeted" letter for conferees. A "general" letter will also be available for all other members of the House and Senate.

If you have a problem accessing the ACTION ALERT through the link above, go to http://www.nrln.org . In the "Take Action Now" paragraph near the top of the NRLN Home Page click on the "Click Here" link to take you to the ACTION ALERT.

As you will see in the sample letters, there are four areas where the NRLN is lobbying for improvements in the pension reform legislation. These include:

--Supports the prospective provision in the Senate bill eliminating "wearaway" for normal and early retirement and opposes any effort to retroactively legalize cash balance conversions.

--Opposes the lowering from 125% to 115% of the Section 420 threshold for transfers of money out of pension plans.

--Urges strengthening of pension plan disclosure requirements.

--Require that investment advisors for 401K plans have no potential conflicts of interest.

To increase the likelihood that the Senator’s staff will pass your letter along to the Senator to read, edit it to include a personal comment. Add your own subject line and a personal comment, such as, stating you voted for the Senator or Representative or you have lived in his/her state for "x" number of years.

Once this pension legislation passes it will impact retirees for years to come. Therefore, we must make every effort to gain the improvements that the NRLN has identified as critical. Please go now to the NRLN website at http://capwiz.com/abtr/home and send your letters to Congress.

 

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