Now is the Best Time to Contact Congress
While your legislator is home on break, now is a good time to urge them to take Congressional action to help stabilize industry pension plans.
Congress has heard loud and clear from employers contributing to failing plans and from unions worried about failing plans. Now they need to hear from their local businesses about how our industry has been working to solve its own problems and how Congressional action is required this year. No Action is Not An Option!
SMACNA, along with seven construction industry associations, recently sent a detailed letter to all U.S. senators and representatives expressing the urgent need for them to not delay on the matter of composite plans, warning about changes to investment assumptions and urging caution with regard to PBGC premium increases. SMACNA would like you to take this letter to your legislator and use it as a conversation starter to help explain that the current system is fragile and what needs to be done to modernize it this year. We want you to explain that another year of inaction will result in fewer employers being able to make their ever-increasing contribution requirements putting a secure retirement for millions of construction craft workers in jeopardy.
Furthermore, the Joint Select Committee on the Solvency of Multiemployer Pensions (JSC) has been working to find a balanced, bipartisan solution for PBGC funding issues and for failing plans. The concerns of construction industry employers, who represent a significant segment of the multiemployer defined benefit system, have not been adequately heard. Members of the JSC and all members of Congress need to know and understand the urgency of our position on the GROW Act and any changes to plan structure the JSC may be considering.
Even though SMACNA’s Capitol Hill office is constantly working on this issue, the most effective lobbying is done by you, their constituents. To assist you in reaching out to your legislator, check SMACNA’s Advocacy Take Action page using your zip code under the “Find Legislator” section and see “profile” to get district office information. In addition, you can visit the U.S. House website and use Find Your Representative to send a message directly from there. Plus, SMACNA’s Capitol Hill office is ready to help. Call them at (202) 547-8202 and always, be sure to let them know who you contact and share any replies you receive from your legislator.