Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

Resources for Multiemployer Reform

Date Published: 
Friday, December 8, 2017

This is an urgent time. Senator Sherrod Brown (OH)  and Congressman Richard Neal (D-MA) have introduced bills to help save multiemployer pension plans, which retirees and their allies are pushing to be included as part of the end-year Omnibus bill. S. 2147, the “Butch Lewis Act” and its house companion bill H.R. 4444, called the “Rehabilitation of Multiemployer Pensions Act” provide an innovative way to avoid reductions in retiree pensions by providing relief to severely-underfunded multiemployer plans.

How do the bills help save multiemployer plans? In brief, S. 2147 and H.R. 4444 would set up a new office in the Treasury Department called the Pension Rehabilitation Administration (PRA) that would sell Treasury bonds to financial firms and the public. The PRA would then lend the money from the sale of the bonds to troubled pension plans. Among the most protective features of the bill is that plans would be required to use the loans to pay the full benefits of retirees, either by buying annuities from insurance companies or other equally protective measures. The plans are given 30 years to pay back the loans, which will be ample time for most plans, especially since the retiree liabilities will have been taken off the books, which is one of the biggest reasons these plans are suffering financially.

In the final push to get these bills passed before the end of the year, we urge you to contact your members of Congress and urge them to both co-sponsor these bills and also urge Republican and Democratic leadership to include this bill in any year-end deal struck on end-year legislation.

Here are resources that may help you:

Take Action

About the Bill

Pension Rights Center Resources

Letters of Endorsement