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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Attention younger working Pennsylvanians!
Senior citizens have some advice for you.
“Our advice to younger people is to recognize that they need to start saving for retirement,” says Ray Landis of the AARP (American Association of Retired People).
That’s because the average monthly social security check is just $1,400.
“If folks haven’t saved for retirement, they are going to be in desperate situations,” adds Landis.
“These young millennials that are entering the workforce they need to think about their future now,” says Kevin Shivers with the Federation of Independent Businesses.
It’s a huge problem, especially since many workers don’t save on their own or they work for employers with no IRA or 401K savings plan, let alone a pension.
“We know that Pennsylvania is unprepared for retirement,” state Treasurer Joe Torsella told KDKA money editor Jon Delano on Friday. “We know that one out of three of us don’t have a single dollar saved for retirement. The other thing we know is that there is a huge number of working Pennsylvanians who don’t have access to any way to save at their place of work.”
Torsella has convened a bi-partisan panel — which held a hearing in Pittsburgh on Friday — to examine this issue.
Private sector retirement security is missing for over 2 million Pennsylvanians.
So the question is what can the state of Pennsylvania do about that?
Small businesses criticize the high cost of legal set-up and compliance fees.
“My employees are very important to me. We’re a small business, family owned, we’ve got 15 people, and it’s really hard to offer retirement benefits,” says Steve Rennekamp of Energy Swing Windows.
And small companies that do offer 401K’s say employees don’t have extra money to save.
“Many times they are busy feeding their families. They’re busy planning for college education, instead of looking at myself and my retirement plan,” says Kelli Robbins of Contact One Communications.
Torsella says there’s one option — a state-created but independently operated IRA that employers could opt into for their workers.
“There is a relatively simple set of solutions here that could really make a difference in people’s lives,” he said.