Boehner, Johnson Bring Bush Pension Reform to House

February 14, 2002 ( - Rep. John Boehner, (R-Ohio), and Rep. Sam Johnson, (R-Texas) have introduced the Pension Security Act, which features a proposed list of 401(k) operating changes - including Boehner's long-time initiative to encourage employers to make available investment advice.

Boehner is chairman of the Education & the Workforce Committee while Johnson is chair of the Employer-Employee Relations Subcommittee.

The Pension Security Act mirrors the initiatives proposed by President Bush on February 1.   

According to Boehner, the bill would

  • prohibit senior corporate executives from selling company stock during “blackout” periods when workers are unable to change investments in their plans
  • require companies to give 30-days’ notice before a blackout period begins
  • clarify that companies have a fiduciary responsibility for workers’ investments during a blackout period – and that employers will be responsible for the consequences of the workers’ inability to control their investments if they violate their fiduciary duty to act in the interests of the workers during blackout periods
  • give employees the right to sell company stocks and diversify into other investment options after they have participated in a 401(k) plan for three years
  • encourage employers to make investment advice available to their employees
  • require companies to give workers quarterly benefit statements that include information about accounts, including the value of their assets, their rights to diversify, and the importance of maintaining a diversified portfolio. 

The bill allows the Labor Secretary to tailor this requirement to meet the needs of small business plans.

“The bill is the first step toward a consensus product that can eventually be signed into law,” Boehner said in a statement. “It will help restore worker confidence in the nation’s retirement security and pension system.”