TSP Wants Congressional Hearing Delay

April 18, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - The federal Thrift Savings Plan board is resisting Congressional efforts to add a real estate investment option to the retirement savings program.

TSP Executive Director  Gary Amelio said officials objected to the notion of adding one more fund without first having a systematic study of all possible additional options, according to govexec.com. The board hired consulting firm Ennis Knupp & Associates of Chicago to conduct such a review, which TSP said should be wrapped up this fall.

Andrew Saul, chairman of the TSP board, said he wants the House Government Reform Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce and Agency Organization to wait for Ennis Knupp to finish before going forward with its announced plans for an April 26 public hearing on the issue. But TSP officials will keep their promise to present testimony at the hearing.

“Why we’re going through all of this at this point in time I just don’t understand,” Saul said. “(But) We’ve made a commitment to Congress and we intend to keep that commitment.”

The TSP federal employees’ version of a 401(k) retirement savings plan, invests participants’ $180 billion in five basic funds and life cycle options blending those funds based on anticipated retirement dates.

In March, the Employee Thrift Advisory Committee, made up of representatives from federal employee unions and advocacy groups, passed a resolution opposing a REIT fund (See Federal Employee Groups Strongly Against REIT in TSP).