Letter: Urge legislators to support fix to pension plans
Rest assured Americans: senior citizens are coming to the rescue! They have risen from retirement to come up with a plan to expand U.S. prosperity. It's called the Butch Lewis Act. Congress almost passed it a few weeks ago, but kind of "got scared." Here is the background: A lot of elderly folks, thousands of North Dakotans and Minnesotans, had retirement plans as part of their pay when they were working. As the plans became more and more full of money, they caught the attention of government leaders, who eventually said, "We will take care of this money instead of you."
Well, here we are decades later and the plans are underfunded. If they don't get fixed, it will adversely affect retired folks, like the ones who babysit your kids for free; those who do volunteer work for your organization; those who bought the lake cabin you get invited to a lot; those who donate to your charity, your tips, your fundraisers for people who need financial help. These folks will have their incomes cut in half or disappear, with little or nothing left for other working folks who plan on retiring some day.
It would probably be fair to demand a bailout of retirement plans that the government took over and managed. They broke them, they fix them. Right? Well, enter a dedicated group of good citizens who rose up with their creaky knees and bad backs, worked with business leaders and leaders in Washington, D.C., and found the way to a better future for us all. Rather than funding in the form of a handout, the Butch Lewis Act is funded by financial instruments that people want to invest in right now. It's a paid plan that has been scored and given the thumbs up by actuaries and many Congressional Republicans and Democrats. There is yet another government funding vote coming up March 23. Maybe our senators and representatives can attach the Butch Lewis Act to it? Or just pass it outright, thus providing a solution to our seniors' dilemma and insuring the financial future of young workers and their employers? Many retired senior citizens are still working for the good of all. Won't you please voice your support?
Nolan lives in West Fargo.