Coalition in Congress Pushing Against Teamsters Pension Cuts

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The Multi-employer Pension Reform Act of 2014 allows some underfunded multi-employer plans to cut benefits in certain situations.

The Central States Pension Fund – which covers 400,000 truckers across the U.S. – started the process of enacting benefit cuts last summer.

Now, a coalition of Congressmen and women – 90 lawmakers in all – are asking the U.S. Treasury to reject the benefit-slashing proposal.

From the Detroit Free Press:

U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell led a coalition of dozens of members of Congress is signing a letter to the U.S. Treasury asking that a proposal to make steep cuts to retiree benefits for truckers under the Central States Pension Fund be rejected.

“This is an issue of fundamental fairness,” Dingell said. “These employees worked a lifetime thinking they would have a pension to retire on, and now they don’t know what they will live on. These cuts would have a devastating impact on workers, retirees, families and whole communities.”

Treasury officials are holding a series of hearings around the nation to consider the proposal, including one set for next Monday, Feb. 8, at 4:30 p.m. at the Wayne State University General Lectures Building, Room 100, 5045 Anthony Wayne, in Detroit.

Nearly 90 members of Congress signed the letter, including U.S. Rep. John Conyers, D-Detroit, which was sent to Kenneth Feinberg, who was appointed in June by Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew to serve as special master to oversee the implementation of the Multi-employer Pension Reform Act of 2014.

The executive director of the Central States fund, Thomas Nyhan, argued over the summer that enacting benefit cuts was the only way to avoid the fund’s complete, eventual collapse.

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