Dear NAGDCA Members,
As the winter fades and signs of spring start to emerge, a feeling of normalcy is beginning to return at NAGDCA. Preparations for the Annual Conference – live and in person in Baltimore! – are in full swing, our online events calendar is starting to fill up, the Executive Board met in Atlanta last week, and the Industry Committee and staff are busy planning to meet in Washington, DC on June 6 – 10.
I want to take this opportunity to focus on our upcoming meetings at the Capitol because this year they will be especially important. While we meet in DC with our industry members to discuss legislative issues annually, 2022 presents an exciting opportunity to connect in new ways and potentially address some longstanding issues that have caused headaches in the industry for many years.
Unlike previous years, we are inviting both our industry and government members to DC to help our advocacy efforts to improve public sector retirement plans. For industry members, we will be returning to our in-person Industry Roundtable following a two-year Covid hiatus. For our government members, we will be offering our inaugural DC Fly-In. This is a new event that will allow us to show our national reach and connect our government members with their home senators and representatives. We are also excited to hold both events in the same week, which provides the opportunity for our government and industry members to get together at a mid-week reception.
While we cannot wait to get to DC, our lobbying process is already well under way. NAGDCA government members from Delaware, Colorado, Indiana, Nevada, Texas, Washington, Rhode Island, and Virginia have joined us on calls with staff from the Senate Finance Committee to help them understand why NAGDCA’s Legislative Priorities will support public plan administrators in providing a secure retirement to employees in their jurisdiction. Our government members have spoken eloquently and competently about their experiences and the role of defined contribution plans in the public sector, and we are incredibly grateful for their willingness to join us for our virtual meetings.
We look forward to continuing these conversations in-person in DC this summer, and we hope you all can come and meet with your congressional staff. Hearing directly from our members has been incredibly important in our efforts to get retirement legislation passed this year, and we are confident that in-person meetings will be even more effective. Whether you represent our largest states or smallest local plans, your voice will have a significant impact on the future of public defined contribution plans. So come join us!
Thank you for all you do, and we can’t wait to see you again.
All the Best,
By Groom Law Group
2022 is off to a rapid start in Washington. As this is being written, Congressional negotiators are close to the finish line on an omnibus appropriations bill to fund the government for the remainder of fiscal year 2022 and avoid a shutdown. Meanwhile, Democrats in Congress are continuing to work to advance President Biden’s stalled Build Back Better domestic policy agenda. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has held up progress on the House-passed legislation for months by objecting to the cost and scope of the package. Recently, Senator Manchin indicated an openness to advancing a package that would include repealing some of the 2017 tax cuts and putting the revenue toward “fighting inflation or deficit reduction,” lowering prescription drug prices, and some climate change provisions. Sen. Manchin is reportedly not open to items such paid family leave and an extension of the enhanced, refundable child tax credit that had appeared in the earlier House-passed Build Back Better legislation. How quickly a renewed domestic policy package comes together remains to be seen.
While neither the omnibus nor the domestic policy package include retirement provisions at this time, Congressional staff are working extensively behind the scenes on retirement legislation. The House Ways and Means Committee approved H.R. 2954, the Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2021, colloquially known as SECURE 2.0, last year, but the bill has yet to come up for a vote on the House floor. It is our understanding that the lack of a vote at this time is not due to a lack of support for the measure. Across the Capitol, the Senate Finance Committee is gearing up for a hearing on its own version of SECURE 2.0. The Finance Committee is building its own retirement bill, pulling popular provisions from an assortment of existing retirement bills, including S. 1770, the Retirement Security and Savings Act of 2021, colloquially known as Cardin-Portman for the two senators who introduced it. The Cardin-Portman bill is endorsed by NAGDCA and includes a number of provisions important to governmental plans, among them allowing 403(b)s to invest in collective investment trusts, the elimination of the “first day of the month” rule for 457(b) plans, and more.
The Senate Finance Committee is expected to hold a markup of its retirement legislation in the coming months, with mid-May currently targeted. A mid-May markup dovetails perfectly with NAGDCA’s planned DC Fly-In scheduled for June 7-8: fly-in participants will be able to build on the Finance Committee’s momentum to encourage all lawmakers on both sides of the Hill to support this bipartisan legislation working its way through the legislative process. Please sign up here to join us in Washington.
EBRI Issue Brief: ESG Investment Options in Public DC Plans
Increasing consideration of sustainable investing in retirement plans has been driven by growing recognition of climate change and evolving consumer preferences, as well as innovations in both data and investment products, heightened regulatory focus, and continued media coverage. As a first step toward providing objective research on this topic, this Issue Brief studies the adoption of one kind of sustainable investment — environmental, social, or governance (ESG)- themed investment options — among public defined contribution (DC) plan participants.
To study the prevalence and adoption of ESG investing in employer-sponsored retirement plans, we use data collected by the Public Retirement Research Lab (PRRL). In this Issue Brief, we study the ESG investment decisions of approximately 32,000 participants in public-sector defined contribution retirement plans.
The value of impartial financial education: How organizations can provide financial education that changes lives
It’s no secret that when people have control over their money, they’re more likely to achieve life goals, feel more secure, and experience holistic wellbeing. And yet, even in the 19th century, American essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson voiced a sentiment that many people still feel today: Finances are daunting, and when you don’t feel as if you know how to manage money, getting enough can feel like an insurmountable task.
Trends in Public and Private Sector DC Plan Investment Menu Design, Costs and ESG Incorporation
Much can be made of the differences between public sector defined contribution (DC) plans and their private sector corporate counterparts. Despite these differences, however, public sector and corporate DC plans share similar objectives and, increasingly, a view of best practices that are driving several important trends across the industry.
Dear NAGDCA Members,
I’ve had the distinct pleasure and honor to serve as the NAGDCA Association Director for the last 18 years. It has been a wonderful, rewarding experience. The organization has grown and accomplished so much and is poised to grow and accomplish even more. I wanted to share with you today that I’ll be stepping away from my role as Association Director with NAGDCA effective March 31.
Recently, we introduced you to Josh Spradling, NAGDCA’s Deputy Director. He will manage the day-to-day operations as I have in the past. Along with Matt Petersen – Executive Director, Carly Miller – Program Manager, and the rest of the staff team, you are in great hands.
My role within our company, AMR Management Services, is expanding and I will become our company’s Client Liaison to NAGDCA. This will provide an opportunity for me to stay connected to NAGDCA to continue providing the historical perspective as well as overall association management expertise.
I can’t think you enough for your support and friendship over the years. The NAGDCA community is incredibly special, and I look forward to seeing everyone in Baltimore for the Annual Conference.
CONNECT WEBINAR – MARCH 16
Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program: Temporary Waivers Explained
Wednesday, March 16 | 3:00-4:00 pm ET
Join us on March 16 to learn about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program and the eligibility requirements. The speakers will explain the temporary waivers announced in October 2021 that address many of the barriers that public sector employees faced in the past, such as having the wrong loan type or making payments on the wrong payment plan. This short-term waiver ends on October 31, 2022, meaning that borrowers must take action on or before the expiration date to benefit.
Learn how to help employees and participants take advantage of the relaxed requirements and discover the impact student loan debt support can have on employee retention.
2022 DC FLY-IN – REGISTER TODAY!
We’re excited to announce the DC Fly-In event is rescheduled for June 2022. Plan sponsors will have the opportunity to help NAGDCA strengthen our message around key legislative priorities and reinforce NAGDCA as the primary resource for policymakers on public sector defined contribution plan issues.
The Fly-In offers NAGDCA government members a unique opportunity to:
- learn about legislative priorities that could impact your plan.
- join fellow plan sponsors in meetings with legislative staff.
- be part of the process that shapes public sector defined contribution plans in years to come.
2022 INDUSTRY ROUNDTABLE – REGISTER TODAY!
Registration is open for the 2022 Industry Roundtable scheduled for Monday, June 6 and Tuesday, June 7. The NAGDCA Executive Board would like to express their gratitude to the industry for your continued support and welcome you back to the in-person Roundtable by offering free registration for the 2022 event.
The Roundtable offers you a unique opportunity to meet and discuss important legislative, administrative, and strategic issues facing public sector DC plans. The meeting is exclusively for industry representatives and is designed to address concerns specific to your needs.
2022 LEADERSHIP AWARD NOMINATIONS OPEN
Nominations due – April 29
NAGDCA is now accepting nominations for the 2022 Leadership Awards, an annual program recognizing plans and industry partners who have demonstrated excellence in one of four main categories – Participant Education & Communication; Plan Design & Administration; Technology, Interactive Multimedia & Cybersecurity; and National Retirement Security Month.
Plans of all sizes are encouraged to submit nominations and asset size and plan resources will be taken into consideration during the scoring process. Successful nominations in all categories will include measurable results that led to a sound improvement in the plan.