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headshot of DOL nominee Lisa Gomez

Regulation and Compliance > Federal Regulation > DOL

Biden's Key DOL Pick Could Get Senate Vote This Week

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What You Need to Know

  • Gomez’s nomination could come up for a vote on the Senate floor as early as Tuesday.
  • Biden renominated ERISA attorney Gomez on Jan. 4.
  • Gomez will be the point person on helping Labor shepherd a new fiduciary rule.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, has filed a procedural motion to expedite the final consideration of Lisa Gomez, the Biden administration’s nominee to lead the Labor Department’s Employee Benefits Security Administration, the agency overseeing retirement plan rules.

Gomez’s nomination could come up for a vote on the Senate floor this week, as early as Tuesday.

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee approved by a 12-9 vote on Jan. 14 Gomez’s nomination to head EBSA.

President Joe Biden renominated Gomez, an ERISA attorney, on Jan. 4. She is a partner at Cowen, Weiss and Simon in New York.

If confirmed by the full Senate, Gomez will be the point person on helping Labor shepherd a new fiduciary rule.

Brad Campbell, partner at Faegre Drinker’s Washington office and former head of EBSA, predicted, correctly, in late 2021 that Labor would miss a December deadline it had set to release a new fiduciary rule. He said a new rule wouldn’t likely come until “the end of spring” 2022.

Labor’s proposed rule will be released to the Office of Management and Budget for review.

“That review could take another 60 to 90 days after that before the proposals are approved [by OMB] and published in the Federal Register, which will be when we will first see” what the rules say, added Fred Reish, partner at Faegre Drinker, in previous comments to ThinkAdvisor.

Retirement Security Roundtable

Labor Secretary Marty Walsh on Monday held the first in a series of roundtable discussions in New York on retirement security.

Walsh was joined by Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the secretary’s representative for pensions and retirement, and other industry stakeholders.

“Every single American worker should be able to retire with security. It’s fundamental to the dignity of work, and fundamental to our mission at the Department of Labor,” Walsh said at the roundtable.

“In this nationwide campaign, we want to hear all the challenges people are facing, in every industry and at every stage of their career — and we want to hear about solutions as well. We want to work collaboratively to improve our nation’s retirement system so that no one has to worry about outliving their money. I’m grateful to all the stakeholders helping us launch this vital conversation,” he explained.

(Photo: Cohen, Weiss and Simon)