State Visitor
National Chromium’s John Miller, right, gives a tour to Sean Scanlon, state comptroller Jan. 20. Supervisor Fred Aptley, left, explains the process to Scanlon. Linda Lemmon photo.


A ‘perfect
fit’ for small
Putnam business was
one of the first to sign on
By Linda Lemmon
Town Crier Editor
PUTNAM — For small businesses, to say that competition for employees — especially after COVID-19— is stiff would be an understatement.
The state, recognizing this, created a retirement savings program called MYCT savings plan which gives small employers one more weapon in the hiring wars. And the push is on to open the program to even smaller businesses.
State Comptroller Sean Scanlon visited one of the first companies to sign on to the program, local business National Chromium in Putnam.
In September 2021, business owner John P. Miller was contacted about joining the program, at that point a pilot program. He researched it and signed on to the program at the end of 2021. Miller said that 401K and IRA plans are expensive, even through payroll providers.
Miller said the program is invaluable to small companies. All costs, especially after COVID-19, are up for businesses. To keep employees pay had to go up, and medical benefits. That left little for retirement plans for employees. And having a retirement plan to help keep/appeal to potential employees is important. The pool of potential employees shrunk — some employees, after COVID-19m just stayed retired.  
Scanlon agreed that MYCT savings plan is an excellent benefit that can be offered in hiring.
This program, Miller said, takes about five minutes to set up, is easy, paperless and employee driven. Five of his nine employees enrolled in the plan. Four of them make a 3 percent contribution through payroll deduction and one contributes 5 percent. Employees can change their contribution anytime they want.
If an employee goes elsewhere, Scanlon said, they can take their plan with them.
Scanlon said his mother was a small business owner so this challenge for Connecticut businesses “resonated with me.” He said 50 percent of Connecticut businesses don’t offer retirement plans. The program is divided into three tiers: More than 100 employees, 25 to 100 employees and five to 25 employees. He said there are 22,000 businesses in the program.
Scanlon said his office is working to allow even smaller businesses, with fewer than 5 employees to enroll in the program. “We’re working on that,” said Scanlon.
National Chromium was founded in 1940 by Norman Trudeau and made phonograph needles. The company then plated torpedo shafts. After WWI the company did textile parts and then pivoted to tool and die, mold makers and machine shops. Because many of their customers were then outsourcing some work, the company pivoted again and since 2002, concentrates on hard chrome and electroless nickel.
Miller said the program is excellent and “a perfect fit.”

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