Senate Finance Committee Chair Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Senate HELP Committee Chair Lamar Alexander (R-TN) released their comprehensive pension reform proposal on November 20.
The proposal, outlined in a Grassley – Alexander White Paper, is complex and contains provisions that are likely to draw criticism from both Democrats in the Senate and from stakeholders whom it would affect. However, it is hoped that this current proposal will be a catalyst for bipartisan, bicameral action to address the failures in the current system.
For background, the House-passed Butch Lewis Act, provided a solution only for failing plans with a loan program many feared would never be paid back and had no chance of passing in the Republican controlled Senate.
A twelve page summary of the Grassley – Alexander White Paper is available, and the full technical explanation of the Grassley – Alexander White Paper has also been prepared.
Members and Chapter of SMACNA along with SMACNA staff have been consistently reaching out to both Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill urging action and modernization of the multiemployer system and repeatedly emphasizing the issues important to construction industry employers.
SMACNA will be evaluating and commenting on the current proposal and working with construction industry partners to make sure any final proposal addresses the concerns of construction industry plan stakeholders.
Previous information relating to multiemployer pension reform is available here.