Legislation to help struggling multiemployer pension funds is to be considered this week by a key House panel as part of a COVID-19 relief measure.
The House Ways and Means Committee is expected to start marking up a package of pandemic relief measures Wednesday, including one aimed at stabilizing pensions for more than 1 million participants in multiemployer plans approaching insolvency.
The pension section of the proposed Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021 is cited as the "Butch Lewis 4 Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021."
It is based on a previously proposed multiemployer pension relief bill named for retiree Butch Lewis that called for a federal loan program for struggling plans and more resources for the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. to help troubled plans through partitions.
The latest proposal does not include a loan program but does call for cash payments through the PBGC to help financially troubled multiemployer plans with more retirees than active workers in any plan year beginning in 2020 through 2022.