More than 30 House Democrats sent a letter to Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis on Monday that not only thanked her for Phyllis Borzi’s decision to withdraw the DOL’s proposed rule redefining the term fiduciary, but also set out specific areas the new rule should address when it’s reproposed in early 2012.
The letter, which was also signed by Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee, argued that if the previous rule had been finalized, “millions of Americans would have been left without the ability to receive adequate investment education and assistance in planning for retirement. Furthermore, the proposal would have been harmful for the many small businesses that need help in providing retirement benefits for their employees.”
The letter writing effort was led by Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., who addressed members of the Financial Services Institute (FSI) at FSI’s Advocacy Summit in Washington in late October.
During the second day of the Advocacy Summit, where FSI members held over 260 meetings on the Hill, “we met with each office that signed the letter, urging them to do so,” says FSI Spokesman Chris Paulitz. “Many of these offices committed to sign the letter during these meetings. FSI and its members followed up with each office via email and/or in person to urge them to sign the letter.”
In order to protect and promote retirement savings, the lawmakers wrote, DOL in its reproposed rule should conduct a thorough review of the need for a new regulation; perform a complete cost/benefit analysis; and take into account the comments submitted.