Why would anyone want to be a trustee? Perhaps you were roped in to it. Maybe no one else stepped up to the plate. Or, perhaps you’re doing a favor for your chapter exec. Let us know your reason in the comment section below.
Whatever may have prompted you to agree to act as a trustee of a pension, health and welfare, training, industry, or other benefit fund, we at SMACNA are just glad that you did. We need intelligent capable people, such as yourself, to direct our funds and do your level-best to ensure they operate efficiently and effectively. SMACNA recognizes that this can often be a difficult task because of the exceedingly complex and continually evolving laws in which the funds must operate.
It is our hope that the Trustee Advisor will become a valuable resource that helps you navigate the myriad of laws, regulations and practical consideration that go into operating a fund.
In promoting this new educational effort by SMACNA, you’ve probably heard us talk about how this education campaign is aimed at helping you meet your own, as well as your association’s, fiduciary duty. You’ve probably read where we said that most non-compliance discovered by the Department of Labor is believed to stem not from “ill-intent” but from lack of knowledge and that the DOL believes there is a pronounced need for more fiduciary education. All of this is true but SMACNA also has a vested interest that our industry’s trust funds control costs and still provide quality benefits. To do that, we need trust-fund savvy trustees who are willing and able to take an active role in the management of every fund.
Our goal is to provide enough information to you so you can be that inquisitive trustee who asks the necessary questions of your fund’s legal counsel, consultants and administrators to ensure your fund is operating at its best. Over the next several months, the Trustee Advisor will be re-familiarizing everyone with the basic information you really need to know. In upcoming posts, we’ll discuss your role as a fiduciary. We’ll also cover the role of service providers as well as key documents every fund should have. While we may focus on the basics, take a look at our “News Briefs” post which highlights recent regulatory developments impacting multiemployer trust funds.
Thank you again for serving as a trustee in our industry. If you have suggestions for topics or issues you’d like discussed by the Trustee Advisor, please contact Joye Blanscett in SMACNA’s Labor Relations Department.