Social Security. Defined benefit pensions. Increasingly, secure and dignified retirement is the difference between union and non-union employment.
The Oregon Supreme Court say lawmakers can cut benefits going forward, just not benefits employees have already earned.
Republicans wanted deeper cuts, Oregon’s House Speaker Tina Kotek and fellow Portland House Democrat Rob Nosse told public sector union members.
Plaintiffs say SB 1049 is a breach of contract, an illegal taking, and violates the Constitution.
The bill would give federal loans to union multi-employer pension plans to prevent their collapse.
The Butch-Lewis Act would lend money to pension plans to give them a chance to recover.
Top Democrats propose to cut public employee compensation and divert those resources to fund employer obligations to the pension system, but a coalition of public employee unions plans to fight the cuts in the Capitol and in the courts if need be.
The 2008 financial crisis is still claiming new victims.
The Joint Select Committee on Solvency of Multiemployer Pension Plans was supposed to vote on a solution to the looming crisis in union-sponsored pensions by the end of November.
As of Oct. 1, pension benefits were cut as much as 30 percent for retired members of Office and Professional Employees International Union in the Western United States.
Without a cut of up to 30 percent of benefits, the pension fund is headed for collapse in 18 years.