Letter to the Speaker of the House Transmitting Proposed Pension Equity Legislation

September 29, 1983

Dear Mr. Speaker:

I enclose for your consideration a draft bill entitled the ``Pension Equity Act of 1983.'' This legislation seeks to amend the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and the Internal Revenue Code to provide greater equity in the provision of retirement income for women.

In my State of the Union Address last January, I underscored my commitment to taking action to end inequities in the provision of pensions to women. This issue is a top priority of my Administration, and I believe passage of legislation is imperative to eliminate difficulties faced by women both in earning their own pensions and receiving retirement income as widows and divorcees.

Many of these provisions are similar to proposals contained in S. 19, the ``Retirement Equity Act,'' which has been introduced in the Senate by Senator Dole. Further, the Administration has testified before the Senate Finance Committee where we stated our strong endorsement of many of these proposals and urged their prompt consideration and enactment. We believe that these and the other amendments contained in our bill are long overdue and will significantly improve the ability of women to realize a fair and equitable retirement income. At my direction, we will continue to work closely with Senator Dole and other members of the Senate to enact pension equity legislation this year.

We are specifically transmitting this legislation to you to focus the attention of the House of Representatives on many of the problems facing women in securing an adequate pension. We look forward to working with the appropriate Committees of the House to provide whatever assistance may be required to achieve enactment of these extremely important statutory provisions.

Sincerely,

Ronald Reagan

[The Honorable Thomas P. O'Neill, Jr., Speaker of the House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. 20515]