Sam Johnson, John Cornyn Reintroduce Bill to Ensure Fair Retirement Savings Treatment for Guard, Reserve Forces

f t # e
Washington, March 2, 2017 | comments

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today U.S. Congressman Sam Johnson (TX-03) reintroduced the Servicemember Retirement Improvement Act (H.R. 1317).  This bill would stop the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) from limiting the ability of Guard and Reserve service members to save for their retirement.  Senator John Cornyn (TX-R) likewise introduced companion legislation in the Senate. 


“Ensuring our troops and veterans receive fair treatment is a top priority of mine, particularly as a 29-year Air Force veteran and POW for nearly seven years,” said Johnson.  “Unfortunately, the IRS is able to limit many of America’s Guard and Reserve forces ability to save for their retirement if they also hold a civilian job.  In effect, these service members and their families are being penalized when it comes to saving for their retirement just because they happen to serve our country.  This is wrong.  The men and women who defend freedom deserve better.  That’s what today’s bill is about.  I thank my friend Senator Cornyn for his support in this effort, and I look forward to getting this commonsense bill swiftly signed into law.”


“So often our Guardsmen and Reservists put their civilian lives on hold to answer the call to protect our country, and that sacrifice deserves the full benefits of military service,” stated Cornyn.  “I’m proud to work with Senator Casey to ensure our National Guard members and reservists can get the full retirement benefits they deserve.”


The Servicemember Retirement Improvement Act is supported by a wide range of military and veteran advocacy groups, including the Reserve Officers Association (ROA) and the Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States (EANGUS). 


ROA’s Executive Director, Jeff Phillips, spoke in support of the bill, saying “ROA believes reservists must be able to make the same TSP contributions and reap the same rewards as the active duty; we applaud Representative Johnson's bill, which will achieve this equality.”


EANGUS’s Executive Director, Sergeant Major (Retired) Frank Yoakum, stated, "EANGUS fully supports this legislation. The uniformed services Blended Retirement System has some strong advantages to it, but one of the unintended consequences of the law is the IRS limit on contributions to defined contribution plans and its effect on National Guard and reserve members who already have civilian employers and defined contribution plans. We fully and firmly support this legislation which allows these citizen-patriots to invest in both their civilian and military retirement plans, negating the unintended consequences and providing full value of their contributions."


Groups Supporting H.R. 1317:

Association of the United States Army
Association of the United States Navy
Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States
National Association for Uniformed Services
National Guard Association of the United States
Naval Enlisted Reserve Association
Reserve Officers Association
The Retired Enlisted Association
Marine Corps Reserve Association
U.S. Army Warrant Officers Association
American Military Retirees Association
Commissioned Officers Association of the U.S. Public Health Service
Military Officers Association of America (MOAA)



f t # e