January 28, 2008
For additional information:
Jason Hammersla:
Office: 202-289-6700
Cell: 202-253-5458

Council staff available to comment on State of the Union health,
tax and entitlement proposals

WHO: James A. Klein, president, American Benefits Council
Lynn Dudley, senior vice president, policy, American Benefits Council
Paul Dennett, senior vice president, health care reform, American Benefits Council

President George W. Bush's State of the Union address on Monday, January 28, may highlight a number of health, tax reform and entitlement policy issues including efforts to increase health insurance coverage, reforms to the current tax code, and a renewed look at individual retirement savings initiatives.

"As Congress considers any number of health policy initiatives this year, it is vital that Congress preserve the federal framework of the law governing this area, rather than allowing it to be eroded by state or local laws, in order to enable employers to provide much-needed coverage to their workers," Council President James A. Klein said.

Regarding the likelihood of an economic stimulus package, Klein added, "while a fundamental element of a stimulus package will be to encourage consumer spending in the short term, we believe that the public should not lose sight of the need to focus on retirement savings, which not only will protect their personal financial security, but also will infuse the economy with more capital to be invested to fuel economic growth."

American Benefits Council staff will be available to comment on employee benefits issues related to the President's remarks before and after the speech. The Council is also prepared to discuss these topics as they relate to the ongoing presidential campaigns.

WHERE: Interviews may be conducted via phone, e-mail or in person at the Council offices at 1212 New York Avenue, NW, Suite 1250, Washington DC.
WHEN: Any time following receipt of this advisory, including before and after the State of the Union address. Council office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday. At other times, please see the contact information below.

For interviews with Council staff following President Bush's message, please contact:
For health reform issues: Paul Dennett, (202) 442-4137
For other policy issues, particularly retirement security issues: Lynn Dudley, (703) 615-1990

For other queries, or to schedule an interview during business hours, contact Jason Hammersla, Council director, communications & publications, at or by phone at (202) 253-5458.

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The American Benefits Council is the national trade association for companies concerned about federal legislation and regulations affecting all aspects of the employee benefits system. The Council's members represent the entire spectrum of the private employee benefits community and either sponsor directly or administer retirement and health plans covering more than 100 million Americans.