WASHINGTON, Nov. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Teamsters Union expressed its support today of the introduction of the House companion bill for Sen. Rob Portman's (R-Ohio) Pension Accountability Act. The bill (HR 4029), which was introduced in the House by Reps. David Joyce (R-Ohio) and Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), would guarantee that the votes of thousands of retirees and participants would not be nullified as part of the process included in the Multi-employer Pension Reform Act (MPRA).
The legislation would eliminate the threat of the Treasury Department nullifying any vote by the retirees and participants if it judges that the insolvency of the fund would be "systemically important" by causing a liability of more than $1 billion to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC).
The Pension Accountability Act seeks to fix changes to multiemployer pension law that were attached to the omnibus spending bill passed in December. MPRA allows the Treasury Department to nullify any vote taken by pension participants on proposed cuts in large plans. This bill would change that part of the law by making any vote by participants binding and not subject to overrule by the Treasury Department. The legislation would also change the law so that only those ballots returned in any vote are counted.
"The Pension Accountability Act would ensure that participants and retirees in a pension fund have control over their own future," said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. "They have earned the right to have their votes count as surely as they have earned every penny of the pensions that are being threatened by deep cuts. Legislation like the Pension Accountability Act and the Keep Our Pensions Promise Act (KOPPA) go a long way toward protecting our members' pensions."
KOPPA would protect workers and retirees from cuts to their earned retirement benefits. The legislation would restore anti-cutback rules so that retirees in financially troubled multi-employer pension plans would be protected from having their earned benefits cut.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/teamsters.
Galen Munroe, (202) 624-6911
SOURCE International Brotherhood of Teamsters