When Jack Turner began his professional career following World War II, many companies were starting to offer defined pension plans.

Now as Turner — chairman of the board of Alliance Bancshares, which operates Alliance National Bank in Dalton — nears retirement, he sees many companies cutting back on benefits.

“Companies are moving to 401(k) plans where the retirement responsibility is moved to the employee,” Turner said at the second “Share the Vision” luncheon on Friday sponsored by the Leadership Dalton-Whitfield Alumni Association.

And it’s not just retirement plans that are being cut as small businesses and some large companies across the country struggle to provide health insurance to their employees, Turner said.

“We’re really to the point where more and more people are going to have to provide their own health care coverage, provide their own insurance,” Turner said. “The insurance companies are more interested in writing individual policies. I think we’re going to see a continuing move to push the responsibility of health care onto the individual.”

Turner, who last month was inducted into the Junior Achievement Northwest Georgia Business Hall of Fame, has spent much of his career around the health care industry. He is a trustee of Hamilton Healthcare System, a life associate and past chairman of the Whitfield Healthcare Foundation, and past chairman of the Georgia Hospital Association.

Turner also warned of an economic threat from China as the United States continues to lose manufacturing jobs to that burgeoning nation. But the local floorcovering industry should be safe from losing jobs to China, Turner said, referencing the thoughts of Robert “Bob” Shaw, founder and former CEO of Shaw Industries, who spoke at the first “Share the Vision” luncheon in March.

Turner noted China and the United States remain dependent on each other in many ways.

“If we stop buying from China, they will explode politically,” Turner said. “If China stops selling to us, our economy will take a significant shift.”

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