Washington, D.C. – Today, Reps. Jim Renacci (R-OH) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) introduced the bipartisan Pension and Budget Integrity Act (PBIA) to eliminate a Washington-created budget gimmick and protect employees and their employers. This legislation has gained the support of numerous business and labor groups, highlighting the critical need for this legislation.
In recent years, Congress has increased the PBGC premiums several times in order to off-set increased spending, most recently increasing premiums through 2025 by $7.65 billion in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. The Pension and Budget Integrity Act will fix this budget gimmick by amending budget rules to prevent PBGC premiums from being used as an off-set for unrelated spending. It is important to note that this legislation does not prevent Congress from raising premiums if necessary.
“We need to improve our country’s fiscal health by balancing the federal budget, and it cannot be done with accounting gimmicks,” said Renacci. “Budget gimmicks only result in contributing to our nation’s growing debt. Our commonsense, bipartisan bill promotes sound budgetary policy and helps protect the PBGC from losing vital premium contributors.”
“For too long Congress has raised pension premiums as a gimmick to balance the budget on the backs of working class Americans,” said Pocan. “This legislation will ensure that when Congress chooses to increase these premiums, it does so for the benefit of the PBGC and pension beneficiaries.”
“The ASPPA College of Pension Actuaries strongly supports the PBIA,” said Judy Miller, the Executive Director of the ASPPA College of Pension Actuaries (ACOPA). “In past years, PBGC premium increases for single employer plans have been used as a budget gimmick.? The thousands of responsible employers who sponsor defined benefit plans have been penalized simply because they choose to provide this benefit to employees.? This legislation will put a stop to this unfair, and frankly deceptive, practice.
“The Pension and Budget Integrity Act is common-sense legislation that will restore Congress’ original intent with regard to the PBGC and the premiums employers pay, and bring honesty and accountability back to the budget process,” said members of the Pension Coalition.
“For too long, Congress has increased Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) premiums to pay for unrelated budget items, even though Congress does not acknowledge a responsibility for the financial health of the agency,” said International President Robert Martinez, Jr, of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. “By unnecessarily raising PBGC premiums, pension plans suffer undue financial pressure while working to provide retirement security to tens of millions of Americans. We are pleased that Congressmen Renacci and Pocan have introduced bipartisan legislation, the Pension and Budget Integrity Act, which would amend budget rules to prevent premiums from being used as an off-set, and we strongly support their efforts.”
Renacci has represented the 16th district of Ohio since 2011 and sits on the Ways and Means Committee and Budget Committee.