Industry Insights

2016 ESCA Federal Policy Conference & Lobby Day Key Takeaways

September 2016
Author:  Cara Benningfield

Cara Benningfield

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The 2016 Employee-Owned S Corporations of America (ESCA) Federal Policy Conference and Lobby Day drew more than 140 ESCA members and guests to Washington, D.C. in July. Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, Democratic Conference vice chair, expressed his support of S corporation employee stock ownership plans (ESOP) as guest speaker at the opening session, telling attendees, “Ownership is a great thing.”

There also were visits by other ESOP supporters, including:

  • Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee, Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee chairman
  • Senate Finance Committee members Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and Ben Cardin, D-Maryland
  • House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas
  • House Ways and Means Committee members Erik Paulsen, R-Minnesota, and Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon
  • Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, Democratic Whip

Stephanie Silverman, ESCA president and executive director, gave a political update and shared her outlook on the current environment in Washington. She focused on the upcoming election and issues such as tax reform. She also encouraged members to remain actively engaged with their U.S. Congress members.

Employee-owners advocated legislation to protect and promote S corp ESOPs in more than 120 congressional office visits. They also shared how S corp ESOPs have affected retirement savings and job creation in their communities.

While employee-owners visited legislators, professional members met with Department of Labor, Department of the Treasury and IRS officials. They discussed various hot topics, focusing on regulatory issues and challenges unique to S corp ESOPs.

To learn more about issues affecting S corp ESOPs, contact your BKD advisor.

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