MIL-OSI USA: Kennedy introduces bill to help Louisianians claim $337 million in unredeemed savings bonds

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US Senate News:

Source: United States Senator John Kennedy (Louisiana)
WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) today introduced the Unclaimed Savings Bond Act of 2021 to help Americans claim more than $26 billion in unredeemed savings bonds, including $337 million that belong to the people of Louisiana.
Sens. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and James Risch (R-Idaho) cosponsored the legislation.
“The Treasury is sitting on billions of dollars that should be in Americans’ pockets—including more than $300 million that belong to Louisianians. Louisianians pay their taxes faithfully, and Washington needs to pay out these savings bonds. The Unclaimed Savings Bond Act would make sure states have what they need to get this money to its rightful owners—so they can invest it in what matters most to their families,” said Kennedy.
“Americans are owed billions of dollars by the federal government for unclaimed, matured savings bonds,” said Moran. “This sensible legislation requires the U.S. Treasury to provide states, including Kansas, with the necessary records to locate the rightful owners and heirs of these matured bonds.”
“Treasury currently holds billions of dollars in unclaimed savings bonds that have been forgotten or lost. This money belongs to the people. Our Unclaimed Savings Bond Act would help Americans identify and access their unclaimed savings bonds,” said Young. “I appreciate Indiana Treasurer of State Kelly Mitchell’s support as we work to help Americans get funds that are rightfully theirs.”
“Washington needs to do its job and returns these bonds to their rightful owners,” said Dr. Cassidy. “This bill ensures Louisianians will have access to the $337 million in unredeemed savings they have earned over the years.”
“Over $470 million is owed to Hoosiers in unredeemed U.S. savings bonds, and I’m proud to join Senator Kennedy to help get this money to its rightful owners,” said Braun.
“The federal government is sitting on billions of dollars in unredeemed savings bonds, including at least $1.4 billion belonging to Floridians,” Rubio said. “This legislation would help the State of Florida to identify bond owners, so that these funds can be returned to their rightful owners.” 
The Treasury Department is currently holding more than $26 billion in matured, unredeemed U.S. savings bonds, most of which the Treasury deems lost, stolen, destroyed or “unclaimed.” Many of these bonds were issued more than 70 years ago and have matured—meaning they no longer earn interest for bondholders. 
In cases in which bonds are not physically possessed by their rightful holders, only the Treasury has the names and addresses of the original bond owners. The Treasury also has the serial numbers needed to claim the bond proceeds.  
The Treasury has not taken any significant actions to proactively reunite bonds with their rightful owners despite its relaunch of Treasury Hunt, an online search tool that allows bond owners to locate bond information, at Kennedy’s request. Individual states, however, conduct programs that reconnect their citizens with unclaimed property. 
Kennedy’s bill would require the Treasury to provide states information about matured and unclaimed bonds so these states can use unclaimed property programs to help find the original owners (or heirs of those original owners) of these bonds. This provision would only apply to unredeemed bonds that matured before 2018.
Text of the Unclaimed Savings Bond Act of 2021 is available here.

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