Albany, New York, June 9, 2022 —The Retail Council of New York State (RCNYS), in partnership with the Alliance of State Retail Associations (ASRA), announces the rollout of a Multiple Employer 401(k) Retirement Plan (MEP) for its members. ASRA is a non-profit advocacy group that administers MEPs for retail associations in 16 affiliate states.

Under recent legislation signed by Governor Kathy Hochul, New York State private businesses with 10 or more employees are required to offer retirement plan options. If no options are offered, employees will be automatically enrolled in the New York State Secure Choice Savings Program.

With this in mind, the Retail Council and ASRA created an MEP 401(k) plan that will serve as a competitive, effective option for employers who wish to explore retirement plans outside of the state-mandated program. The Retail Council’s MEP will provide business owners and their employees access to a robust and cost-effective 401(k) plan.

“We’re excited to offer a 401(k) program to our members and to leverage the knowledge and expertise of ASRA advisers,” said Retail Council President and CEO Melissa O’Connor. “We researched the best options to help businesses keep costs down while offering excellent retirement options for their employees, and we are confident our plan will do just that.”

Multiple Employer Plans leverage economies of scale. By banding together many small to mid-sized businesses, the entire group can enjoy lower aggregate costs. Additionally, an MEP structure provides centralized governance, administration and regulatory oversight.

The Retail Council/ASRA MEP 401(k) is a “closed MEP.” This homogeneous composition, which allows single-plan status in the eyes of the IRS and the Department of Labor, is a tremendous advantage as it decreases the complexities of an open MEP plan while retaining plan design flexibility for each participating employer.

The recordkeeper for the MEP 401(k) is Lincoln Financial Group, a Fortune 200 company and one of the largest retirement plan providers in the nation. The distribution of this solution is open to licensed financial advisers in New York State.

For more information on the MEP 401(k) program or how to become a member of the Retail Council, email info@rcnys.com.

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