About the California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Investment Board
Legislation enacted in 2012 (Senate Bill (SB) 1234, Chapter 734) authorized establishment of the California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Program (Secure Choice). If implemented, Secure Choice would provide a voluntary, low-risk, automatic-enrollment retirement savings plan for an estimated 6.3 million California workers who currently lack access to retirement savings plans through their jobs. Secure Choice would require private employers with five or more employees not currently offering a retirement savings plan to provide their employees access to, and payroll deductions for, Secure Choice retirement accounts. Implementation is contingent on enactment of subsequent legislation. Secure Choice would be administered through the State Treasurerís Office with oversight from the nine-member California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Investment Board (Board).
Before the Legislature can consider further legislation to implement Secure Choice, SB 1234 requires the Board to conduct a market analysis and feasibility study to determine whether the legal and practical conditions for implementation can be met. Funding for the market and feasibility study must come from private nonprofit or for-profit entities, or from federal sources. The use of State funds for the study is prohibited. Upon completion of the study, the Board will provide the results and its recommendations to the Legislature, and await further authorizing legislation to implement the program.
The nine member board is comprised of the State Treasurer (Chair); the Director of Finance; the State Controller; an employee representative appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly; an individual with retirement savings and investment experience appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules; a small business representative appointed by the Governor; and three additional members appointed by the Governor.
Retirement Security by the Numbers
The gap between what U.S. households have saved for retirement and what they should have saved in order to maintain their pre-retirement standard of living.
The percentage of California workers on track to retire with income below 200 percent of the federal poverty level, a commonly used threshold for economic hardship.
The percentage of private sector workers in California age 25 to 64 who work for an employer that offers a retirement savings plan.
The percentage of private sector workers in California who actually participate in an employer-sponsored retirement plan.
Retirement Security Research and Reports
- The Retirement Savings Crisis: Is It Worse Than We Think?
(National Institute on Retirement Security, Nari Rhee, June 2013)
- Meeting California's Retirement Security Challenge
(UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education, Edited by Nari Rhee, 2011)
- Lower Earning Households Could Realize Increases in Retirement Income
(GAO, September 2013)
- The California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Program
(New America Foundation, Aleta Sprague, April 2013)