Monday, May 23, 2005

Kerry Concerned Social Security Private Accounts Will Cost Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, May 23 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Sen. John F. Kerry (news, bio, voting record) (D-Mass.), Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, and Sen. Tom Harkin (news, bio, voting record) (D-Iowa) today sent a letter to the Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA) expressing their concerns that establishing private accounts under "The president's own Social Security commission has acknowledged that privatization would mean expensive new costs and administrative headaches for small businesses, yet the president has put forward no real plan on Social Security and no plan on how to make this work for small-business owners and employees," Kerry said.

In the letter, Kerry and Harkin expressed concerns that President Bush's private accounts for Social Security would be mandatory for small businesses "because employers would have to accommodate the wishes of employees who want to have a private account." Private accounts, they wrote, could potentially further complicate the payroll system, place unnecessary burdens on small businesses such as new administrative costs like those associated with 401(k) plans, increase paperwork, and hold small businesses accountable for any financial losses due to reporting errors.

"In December 2001, the President's Commission to Strengthen Social Security acknowledged that establishing and maintaining a system of private accounts could impose new costs on small businesses," they wrote. "Since then, the structure of private accounts and the increased administrative, regulatory and cost requirements have not been addressed."

Harkin is a member of the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee. To read the full letter, visit the Committee's website at


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