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Seven laws to be that could affect your life - If you're not saving for retirement

May 17, 2017

Excerpt from 7 Days article "Seven Laws to be that Could Affect your Life" by Alicia Freese

If you're not saving for retirement

Stowe Street Café is a family-owned coffee shop in Waterbury that hosts community events such as Friday Night Sushi & Bring Your Own Vinyl. Its baristas are among the 104,000 Vermonters who, according to the AARP, don't get retirement benefits through their work.

Café owner Nicole Grenier said she wants to offer it, but her business is so small that "it's just not something that financially would be feasible."

After years of study, and pending final approval by both chambers, the legislature will finally set up a public retirement plan that will benefit Grenier's baristas and anyone else whose job doesn't provide a retirement plan.

The public option will allow workers to make pretax contributions directly from their paychecks, and it will eventually give employers the option of pitching in as well. The benefit won't be tied to employment, so switching jobs won't require changing plans.

A panel of seven, chaired by the state treasurer, will oversee the fund, which must be up and running no later than 2019.

State Treasurer Beth Pearce makes the case that employees aren't the only ones who'll benefit.

"Studies have shown that a dramatic reduction in government expenditures occurs when you're able to increase the net worth of folks that are contemplating retirement," she noted. "We see this as a win for taxpayers, a win for retirees and a win for employers."