Bush Unveils Pension Proposal

February 1, 2002 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Drawing an analogy between a new era of individual and corporate responsibilities, President George W. Bush today unveiled a new series of pension proposals.

“It’s about respect for the process,” Bush said.  “It’s about openness, fairness.”

Bush, speaking to congressional Republicans at the Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, said that companies were responsible for sharing financials with both shareholders and employees. 

Bush said that the reforms were intended to

  • protect pensions
  • strengthen worker’s ability to manage their funds
  • provide better access to professional advice in making those decisions.

The President cited the 42 million Americans participating in 401(k) plans – and the $2 trillion invested as a ‘critical part’ of retirement security.

Bush said employers should be encouraged to make ‘generous contributions’ to their workers 401(k) plans.  He then said that his proposal called for workers to be able to sell company contributed stock after three years of participation in the plan.

Another key element according to Bush was to ensure that black-out periods, when present, are fair – and that company executives are bound by the same restrictions imposed on their workers.  ‘What is good for the sailor is good for the captain’, Bush noted.