Bill introduced to take PBGC premiums off the federal budget

Sen. Mike Enzi
Sen. Mike Enzi

Legislation that would take premiums paid to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. off the table when federal budgets are drawn up in Congress was introduced Thursday by Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo.

Groups representing plan sponsors, who have seen PBGC premiums increase dramatically in recent years as Congress used them to offset spending on unrelated programs, welcomed the legislation.

Eight associations — the ERISA Industry Committee, American Benefits Council, ASPPA College of Pension Actuaries, Committee on Investment of Employee Benefit Assets, National Association of Manufacturers, Society for Human Resource Management, U.S. Chamber of Commerce and WorldatWork — said in a letter to Mr. Enzi that the proposed Pension and Budget Integrity Act of 2017 would eliminate the incentive for legislators to raise premium costs to pay for unrelated initiatives and programs, and help stabilize single-employer pension plans.

Mr. Enzi introduced similar legislation in the 114th Congress last year, but no further action was taken.

Similar legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives on Jan. 31 by Reps. Jim Renacci, R-Ohio, and Mark Pocan, D-Wis. Mr. Renacci said in a statement that the Pension and Budget Integrity Act of 2017, which does not prevent Congress from raising PBGC premiums if necessary, “promotes sound budgetary policy and helps protect the PBGC from losing vital premium contributors.”