scanlon retirement
Comptroller Sean Scanlon announces an agreement to restructure the Connecticut Municipal Employees Retirement System Credit: Hugh McQuaid / CTNewsJunkie

More than 20,000 private sector workers were participating in a state-run retirement savings plan, Comptroller Sean Scanlon announced in a Wednesday update, which followed a late-August registration deadline and found around 6,000 employers registered with the program.

The MyCTSavings program is free for employers and is designed to automatically enroll private sector workers in a Roth IRA retirement savings plan if their jobs do not already offer such plans. 

“These latest numbers show that Connecticut residents, especially our younger population, are getting the message that saving early can make a huge impact on their retirement, even if it feels far away,” Scanlon said in a press release. “We’re helping people create a better future for themselves and their families in a way that is cost effective for our government.”

For businesses with five or more employees, registration with the program is mandatory and, as of Wednesday, nearly 11,000 businesses had opted out by certifying they already offered retirement plans to their workers. 

Although businesses are required by law to register with the program, the state currently has few tools short of litigation to enforce that requirement. Since taking office in January, Scanlon has held press conferences, toured businesses and imposed two deadlines — one in March and another at the end of August — to encourage employers to participate. 

The number of businesses participating has risen from less than 5,000 ahead of the August deadline to more than 6,000 as of this week. 

While participation has improved, the state has also considered imposing penalties for failure to comply with the law’s requirements. During this year’s legislative session, lawmakers considered a proposal that would have allowed the comptroller to fine businesses that did not respond. The bill failed to pass before the legislative session concluded in June. 

In August, Scanlon said he expects to revisit the issue next year. 

“We’re going to work with our partners in the legislature to try to make sure that compliance piece is fixed and that will inform the next steps of what we do,” he said

As of this week, participants in the program had accrued a total of $10.68 million in their Roth IRAs and more than half the workers participating in the program were between 19 and 39 years old, according to Scanlon’s office. 

Businesses looking to register with the program or individual workers seeking to enroll in the plan can visit