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State Senator Charlie Bethel.

State Senator Charlie Bethel.

ATLANTA – Very sobering, if not frightening, research results reveal that only one out of every two workers in the State of Georgia have a way to save for retirement at work. The Georgia AARP, in conjunction with the state legislature, are coalescing their efforts to develop a viable vehicle by which Georgia workers can save considerably more and create more financial autonomy during their retirement years.

State Senator Charlie Bethel, Chair of the Georgia Senate Insurance and Labor Committee, has introduced SR 736, designed to create a committee to examine the retirement needs of working Georgians and determine the feasibility of creating a “Work and Save” plan in the state.

The “Work and Save” plan would give those employees a simplistic and easy way to build their own private savings. As a result, more retirees would therefore less reliant on government safety net services and subsidies. This would, subsequently, save taxpayers’ dollars.

According to the National Institute on Retirement Security, the typical working-age household has only $3,000 in retirement savings. However, employees participation in retirement savings programs increase exponentially — at a rate of 71.5% — when they can do so through payroll deduction. AARP is working to provide Georgians with a financial security strategy to ensure choice, savings ease, and portability.

Nine states have already passed legislation to examine or create a “Work and Save” plan which would provide a way for all employed residents to save for retirement via payroll deduction at work, similar to a 529 college savings plan. Research shows that an individual is over 15 times more likely to save for retirement if the employer offers a plan than if they must find an IRA on their own. On average, Georgia retirees receive only about $1,200 a month from Social Security, causing workers to rely on employer-sponsored retirement plans to supplement their income as they age.

“We are delighted by the introduction of this important legislation,” said Debra Tyler-Horton, AARP Georgia State Director. “We are one step closer to providing the 1.7 million Georgians who do not have a way to save for retirement at work with a common sense solution to take charge of their financial future.”

To learn more about the Retirement Security Bill, also known as “Work and Save” bill, and other programs, please visit www.aarp.org.



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