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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) criticized the Biden Administration’s decision to reject an extension of time to comment on its recently announced investment advice rule.

“The Biden Administration’s rejection of a reasonable request to extend the time for all interested stakeholders to comment on a proposed rule that we know will cause harm to millions of retirement savers is disconcerting and frustrating,” said Wayne Chopus, President and CEO of IRI. “Equally unsettling is the decision to move a public hearing date ahead by nearly a week,” he added.

In addition to rejecting a request for additional comment time, the Employee Benefits and Security Administration (EBSA), an agency within the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) with jurisdiction over the proposed fiduciary rule, scheduled a public hearing for December 12, the fifth day of Hanukkah. Public hearings are typically held after an agency receives comments, with additional time for stakeholders to append their input after the hearing.

Earlier this year, Acting Secretary of Labor Julie Su testified to Congress and was asked about the fiduciary rule. She said that DOL was “looking forward to engaging with the public on this issue…to balance the interests of the regulated community and those they serve.”

“Such a short comment period for major federal rulemaking does not allow for meaningful public engagement,” Chopus said. “I find it hard to understand why the Biden Administration is needlessly rushing to finalize a nearly 500-page proposed rule affecting retirement planning and financial security for millions of workers and retirees. We hope that President Biden and Acting Secretary of Labor Julie Su will intervene to overturn EBSA’s decision and grant the extension of time so that thoughtful input on rulemaking of such consequence can be provided.”

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Contact: Dan Zielinski

 

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