Washington State Poised to Launch Small Business Retirement Plan

The official launch of Washington State’s Small Business Retirement Marketplace “is drawing near,” Washington State Department of Commerce Marketplace Director Carolyn McKinnon has announced. The state Department of Commerce operates the program.

The Department of Commerce has reported in a press release that it has verified five plans from two providers for the program. These include two traditional IRAs, two Roth IRAs and a simplified employee pension IRA.

The Department of Commerce says that it is working closely with financial service firms to increase the variety of plans the program will offer, and that it will adjust the program based on user feedback.

Once the plans have been loaded and tested, says the department, the Washington State Retirement Marketplace will go live and be available to the public.

Washington’s Small Business Retirement Marketplace is a virtual marketplace in which financial services firms will offer low-cost retirement savings plans to businesses with fewer than 100 employees, including sole proprietors and the self-employed. The state government intends the program to serve as “an informational hub, bringing together financial services firms, employers and employees to help make retirement possible for everyone” and to “simplify retirement savings options” in order to facilitate “informed decisions” about retirement and saving.

The Washington state House and Senate passed legislation creating the program in April 2015, and Gov. Jay Inslee (D) signed it into law on May 15 of that year.

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