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Congress could soon pass measure aimed at helping more people save for retirement

Employees around the country could soon have more options when it comes to retirement plans.

The House almost unanimously passed what’s known as “Secure 2.0,” the Securing a Strong Retirement Act, with only five votes against it and 414 in favor of it.

The measure aims to help people save more for retirement at all stages of their career.

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According to the legislation, “this bill makes various changes with respect to employer-sponsored retirement plans, including providing for the automatic enrollment of employees in certain plans and increasing the age at which participants are required to begin receiving mandatory distributions.”

It also makes it easier for small businesses to offer competitive retirement plans for workers.

“This is really saying to all those folks that get up every day and go to work every day and worry about making sure their children are taken care of that you can prepare for your own retirement,” said Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA), who co-sponsored more than a dozen proposals included in the retirement package.

For 26-year-old Lillian Ondus, retirement is a big part of her financial planning.

“I chose the job I have now because it has a good 401k plan,” said Ondus. “I’m trying to plan and separate all of my finances so I can do things in the future.”

But not everyone starts thinking about retirement early on, especially as they are focusing on starting out in their career.

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“In my early 20s, all the guys who were at my job who were way older than me were telling me, ‘save now until it hurts because you’ll be thankful later,’” said James Baier.

“Life does come at you fast,” said Kelly. “I just think the earlier you start, the more secure you’re going to feel and the more peace of mind.”

The Senate is moving more slowly on their version of the bill and some changes are expected.

“We’re never sure what’s going to come out of the Senate,” said Kelly. “I think this would be very hard for our friends down the hall to look at and say well you know what this doesn’t have that much support and maybe we can make it better… The sheer number of members who voted for this leaves a lot of credibility to what the effort was for.”