Congressman Earl Pomeroy today released a draft of legislation he will introduce next month to provide funding relief to help defined benefit pension plans weather the historic economic downturn. This draft fills in the details of the previously released outline of the legislation, and includes feedback Pomeroy received from various stakeholders on his funding relief proposals.
“Our country is showing some signs of financial recovery, but exceedingly large pension costs will hamper both job growth and capital investment that are needed to grow the economy. Without help from Congress, many employers face pension costs that are double, or more, of those in 2008, and face stark choices as a result: freeze pensions or cut their workforce,” Congressman Pomeroy said.
“Last month, employers made an urgent plea for manageable and predictable pension funding rules as the nation works it way back to recovery. I heard valuable suggestions from employers and from employee organizations in reaction to the earlier outline of this legislation, and they have been incorporated into the draft legislative language being released today.
“The cornerstone of this bill is temporary pension funding relief that eases an employer’s obligation to make up for the investment losses that pension plans experienced in 2008 by making significantly greater contributions in the coming years. At the same time, employees would get important assurances that their retirement benefits will continue to grow. I believe this bill is an important step in ensuring workers’ lifetime income security in retirement.”
Congressman Pomeroy released an outline of his pension funding proposals on June 23, 2009. Since that time he has spoken with stakeholders and interested parties to get their feedback on the proposals.