A provision contained in pension benefit reform legislation allowing insurance agents to offer investment advice to their 401(k) customers remains up in the air, said a key member of the conference committee drafting a final bill.
In comments to tax lobbyists at a fund-raiser here, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., ranking minority member of the Senate Finance Committee, also said negotiations aimed at completing work on the bill began in earnest May 23, and conferees are aiming to complete work on the bill by June 16.
Baucus also told those attending the lunch that there is speculation that some effort will be made by Republicans to attach legislation repealing the estate tax to the bill.
But Marc Cadin, a lobbyist with the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting, said, “there was no credence” to the speculation and that a vote on estate tax repeal is likely to be held before work on the pension bill is completed.
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Congress is out this week for the Memorial Day recess but returns to work next week.
Cadin, who did not attend the fund-raiser but who heard about the speculation elsewhere, said AALU believes that supporters of full repeal still lack the 60 votes needed to close off debate on such legislation in the Senate.
While there is some talk that a vote on compromise legislation raising the threshold for paying estate taxes and lowering the rate on taxes above the threshold level, Cadin said most observers believe such a vote would not likely occur this year.