Pension Reform May Hitch A Ride With Tax Bill

May 10, 2001 ( - The Senate should turn its attention to pension reform shortly, but the timing could depend on the decision to include the provisions with the tax relief bills currently pending.

Senators Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Max Baucus (D-MT), who co-sponsored the Senate version of the pension reform bill (S. 742) are now working toward inclusion of that bill in the tax relief reconciliation bill being prepared by the Grassley-chaired Senate Finance Committee, according to the American Benefits Council.  A final decision on this inclusion in expected this week.  

The pension package to be included in the larger tax bill would be based on S. 742, but would probably carry a cost of just $40 billion over 10 years rather than the original projected cost of $81 billion over the same period.  If so, that reduction would require many of S. 742’s provisions to be cut or reduced.

Grassley is expected to release his “Chairman’s mark” of the broad tax relief legislation this Friday.  At that point, it should be clear how much, if any, of the pension provisions have been included.

The Senate Finance Committee is expected to undertake a full review of the tax bill beginning on Tuesday, May 15.
– Nevin Adams