The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. has approved two more applications for a federal assistance program that assists struggling multiemployer plans with aid totaling $74 million.
Alaska Ironworkers Pension Plan, Anchorage, Alaska, will receive $53.5 million and Plasterers Local 82 Pension Fund, Portland, Ore., will receive $20.5 million under the Special Financial Assistance Program, the PBGC announced Thursday.
The Alaska Ironworkers Plan, which covers 744 participants in the construction industry, implemented in 2018 a benefit suspension under the terms of the Multiemployer Pension Reform Act of 2014 to address the plan's troubled financial condition at that time and its projected insolvency, the PBGC noted in a news release. The plan reduced benefits of about 650 plan participants by an average of 25%.
The Plasterers Local 82 Fund covers 317 participants in the construction industry. In 2019, it also implemented a benefit suspension under MPRA and reduced benefits of about 250 plan participants by an average of 25%.
PBGC's approval of the SFA applications enables both plans to restore benefits suspended under the terms of MPRA and to make payments to retirees to cover prior benefit suspensions. The SFA will enable the plans to pay retirement benefits without reduction for many years into the future, the PBGC said.
The Alaska Ironworkers Plan had a funding ratio of 69% with $68.9 million in projected benefit obligations as of July 1, 2020, according to the plan's most recent Form 5500 filing. As of June 30, 2021, the plan had $54.8 million in assets, the filing showed.
The Plasterers Local 82 Fund had a funding ratio of 63% with $31.3 million in projected benefit obligations as of Jan. 1, 2021, according to the plan's most recent Form 5500 filing. As of Dec. 31, 2021, the plan had $21.5 million in assets, the filing showed.