U.S. Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio), who has been a key player in driving reforms to 401(k) rules in the aftermath of Enrons financial collapse, is applauding a move to replace the executives who oversee that companys retirement plan.
After Enrons bankruptcy, the largest in U.S. history, it was disclosed that employees of the Houston-based energy trader had lost millions in their 401(k) plans because those plans were over-weighted in Enron stock.
Since, lawmakers, as well as the White House, have been scrambling to pass legislation aimed at preventing other workers from suffering the fate of Enrons employees. Most recently, the Department of Labor announced that it will replace Enrons retirement plan executives with a "pension expert."
Boehner, who serves as chairman of the Committee on Education and the Workforce, successfully passed a bill in the House that would allow fund companies to provide advice to retirement investors in November. He said today that dismissing Enrons 401(k) trustees will demonstrate that "the federal government will move decisively to restore worker confidence in the nations retirement security and pension system."
Boehner said last week that he intends to introduce legislation proposed by President Bush that would allow workers greater freedom in diversifying their retirement portfolios and ensure that top executives are held to the same restrictions as other workers during periods when employees cannot alter their 401(k) plans because those plans are changing providers. Bushs proposal would also provide investors with information about their retirement plans on a quarterly basis.