ESOP Company Congressional Visits – Part 1

The best way to show your member of Congress what your ESOP means to employee owners and the company is to have your member of Congress visit your company. Several ESOP Association members have done just that and we’re going to be sharing their stories over the next two days.

If you’d like information on how to schedule a Congressional visit at your company, download a copy of The ESOP Association’s Congressional Company Visit Kit.

If your member of Congress met with employee owners at your company, or if a meeting was scheduled with a member of Congress in the Washington or District office, please share it with us at media AT esopassociation.org.

Senator Amy Klobuchar Visits WASP Inc.

Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) visited WASP Inc., located in Glenwood, MN, on February 19, 2013.

During her tour with WASP employees, President and CEO, Dane Anderson, stressed to the Senator that statistics show that a large percentage of all workers and Americans nearing retirement age have less than $30,000 saved for retirement. An employee at WASP, with 15 years of participation, already has approximately $300,000 in their ESOP account.

Senator Klobuchar was asked to reintroduce the Promotion and Expansion of Private Employee Ownership Act, which she co-sponsored in the 112th Congress. She was also urged to consider support for Senator Ayotte’s bill (S. 273) to block the DOL’s ill-advised efforts to treat ESOP appraisers as fiduciaries and, most importantly, to protect ESOPs from becoming a victim of tax reform. As this posting, Senator Klobuchar has co-sponsored S. 273.

Klobucher at WASP
Senator Klobuchar with employee owners of WASP Inc.

Thanks to MN/Dakotas Chapter Administrator Sue Crockett for sharing photos and information with the Association.

Congressman Danny K. Davis Visits Burwood Group, Inc.

Rachel Gibson, Director of Finance and Operations at Burwood Group, Inc., located in Chicago, IL, reported that Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL) visited the company on February 21, 2013. Ms. Gibson said of the visit: “The meeting was very positive. Congressman Davis provided an overview of his roll leading one of the most diverse districts in the U.S., along with comments on the general concerns that our nation is facing related to the Sequester. Congressman Davis is a strong supporter of ESOPs and has been for many years. We were honored to share our passion for ESOPs with him and are encouraged to have a strong supporter of our cause on the Ways and Means Committee.”

Employee owners of Burwood Group, Inc. and Congressman Danny Davis.
Employee owners of Burwood Group, Inc. and Congressman Danny Davis.
Burwood Group CEO Mark Theoharous, Congressman Danny Davis, and Burwood Group President, Jim Hart.
Burwood Group CEO Mark Theoharous, Congressman Danny Davis, and Burwood Group President, Jim Hart.
David Solomon, Congressman Danny Davis,  and Rachel Gibson.
David Solomon, Congressman Danny Davis, and Rachel Gibson.

Thanks to Illinois Chapter Administrator Donna Walseth for sharing photos with the Association.

Iowa Chapter Members Step Up in Des Moines, IA for ESOP Day at the State Capitol

A group of 10 Iowa ESOP Association members participated in an ESOP Day at the state capitol in Des Moines on February 27, 2013. The purpose of the visit was to share their support of the Iowa Partners for Economic Progress proposed budget that includes a request for $1 million to establish a program to encourage the formation of ESOPs in Iowa.

Chapter members met with five House members and five Senators presenting a background statement and ownership census flyer (link below photo) asking for their support.  Members felt bipartisan support of the proposal was favorable. Another day at the Capitol may be scheduled prior to a vote on the legislation.

Left to right: Wayne Hansen, CI3; Debbie Williams and Scot Storjohann, BTC ESOP Services; Al Ryerson and Greg Weber, BCC Advisers; Terry McGonegle, Wright Tree Service; Don Brown, Van Meter Inc.
Left to right: Wayne Hansen, CI3; Debbie Williams and Scot Storjohann, BTC ESOP Services; Al Ryerson and Greg Weber, BCC Advisers; Terry McGonegle, Wright Tree Service; Don Brown, Van Meter Inc.

Background statement and ESOP census information leave behindIowa Nebraska Chapter – Day at the Capital – ESOP Census

Thanks to Iowa/Nebraska Chapter Administrator Donna Walseth for sharing information with the Association.

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