Defined contribution plan provisions in the pension compromise bill now being hammered out by Congress are of prime importance to small businesses.
Witnesses delivered that message here Wednesday at a hearing on small business pension plans that was organized by the Senate Finance Committee’s long-term growth subcommittee.
The compromise version of the pension bill, which focuses mainly on shoring up defined benefit pension plans, has been stalled in a conference committee for weeks, and some fear the conference committee may not finish its work by the time Congress leaves for a month-long recess July 28.
Steven Bjerke, an investment representative in the Pendleton, Ore., office of Edward Jones Investments, said small businesses need pension bill provisions that would allow employers to enroll employees in 401(k) plans automatically.
Other provisions important to small businesses include a provision in the House version of the pension bill that would make it easier for agents to give investment advice to participants in 401 (k) plans, Bjerke said.