Ways & Means Hearing Considers Retirement Tax Reform

By April 17, 2012Taxation

Manufacturers continue to applaud the thoughtful process underway in the Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committee considering numerous topics that would need to be considered as part of tax reform. Today’s addition came in the way of a Ways and Means Hearing on Tax Reform and Tax-Favored Retirement Accounts. The facts are clear, employer-provided plans play a critical part in our nation’s retirement system. In fact, there are approximately 660,000 private-sector defined contribution plans covering 72 million participants and over 47,000 private-sector defined benefit plans covering about 18 million participants.

A group supportive of retirement provisions and incentives in law today sent a letter urging the Committee to be mindful during this process that employer-provided plans are a key component of our nation’s retirement system and changing the tax treatment and/or lowering contribution levels will result in lower retirement savings.

We were glad to hear the Chairman state that: “As the Committee continues its work toward comprehensive tax reform, it is important to keep in mind that these savings vehicles affect average people who depend on these resources for their retirement.  We must ensure that we do not inadvertently take steps that result in unintended consequences that could threaten the retirement security of ordinary families.”

And we hope that the commitment to the policies supporting this system is maintained as the march towards what we hope will be comprehensive tax reform proceeds.

Carolyn Lee

Carolyn Lee

Executive Director of The Manufacturing Institute at The Manufacturing Institute
Carolyn Lee is Executive Director of The Manufacturing Institute, the non-profit affiliate of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the nation’s largest industrial trade association. Carolyn drives an agenda focused on improving the manufacturing industry through its three centers: the Center for the American Workforce, the Center for Manufacturing Research, and the Center for Best Practices.

In her role, Carolyn leads the Institute’s workforce efforts to close the skills gap and inspire all Americans to enter the U.S. manufacturing workforce, focusing on women, youth, and veterans. Carolyn steers the Institute’s initiatives and programs to educate the public on manufacturing careers, improve the quality of manufacturing education, engage, develop and retain key members of the workforce, and identify and document best practices. In addition, Carolyn drives the agenda for the Center for Manufacturing Research, which partners with leading consulting firms in the country. The Institute studies the critical issues facing manufacturing and then applies that research to develop and identify solutions that are implemented by companies, schools, governments, and organizations across the country.

Prior to joining the Institute, Carolyn was Senior Director of Tax Policy at the NAM beginning in 2011, where she was responsible for key portions of the NAM’s tax portfolio representing the manufacturing community on Capitol Hill and in the business community and working closely with the NAM membership. She served as the Director of Legislative and Government Affairs at the Telecommunications Industry Association, Manager of State and Federal Government Affairs for 3M Company, and in various positions on Capitol Hill including as Legislative Director for former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and as a senior legislative staff member for former U.S. Rep. Sue Kelly (R-NY).

Carolyn is a graduate of Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania graduating with a B.A. in Political Science. She resides in Northern Virginia with her husband and three children.
Carolyn Lee

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