Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HR1225
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Full Text of HR1225  100th General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, Over ten million Americans are currently
3participating in multiemployer pension plans, which support
4over 9.1% of the United States workforce, or over 13.5 million
5jobs; in 2015, participants in these multiemployer pension
6plans received $41 billion in benefits; and
7    WHEREAS, The Central States Pension Fund is the largest
8multiemployer pension plan in the United States and has 1,335
9employers participating and over 378,000 individuals; and
10    WHEREAS, Current beneficiaries of the Central States
11Pension Fund receive over $2.8 billion a year in benefits and
12pay over $230 million annually in taxes; and
13    WHEREAS, Almost 25,500 participants in the Central States
14Pension Fund live in Illinois, and they receive almost $166
15million in annual benefits; the Illinois beneficiaries pay
16almost $13 million annually in taxes; and
17    WHEREAS, As of August 2017, 114 multiemployer pension plans
18nationwide were underfunded by $49.9 billion, affecting 1.3
19million workers; and
20    WHEREAS, The Central States Pension Fund suffered massive



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1investment losses in the 2008 financial crisis and is projected
2to go insolvent by 2026; the Pension Benefit Guaranty
3Corporation has a $65 billion deficit and is likely to run out
4of money by 2025; and
5    WHEREAS, Should the Central States Pension Fund fail, there
6will be negative economic effects throughout the country and in
7Illinois, as the Fund's participants will lack sufficient
8resources for basic necessities, including housing and medical
9expenses; and
10    WHEREAS, The failure of the Central States Pension Fund
11will cause its participating employers to enter bankruptcy or
12go out of business; when the Central States Pension Fund fails,
13any attempt by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation to meet
14its obligations to the Fund will likely force the PBGC into
15insolvency; and
16    WHEREAS, The Chamber of Commerce has expressed its concern
17that should the Central States Pension Fund fail, other
18multiemployer pension plans would also become insolvent,
19producing a devastating effect on the economy; and
20    WHEREAS, The Butch Lewis Act, Senate Bill 2147, as
21proposed, would create the Pension Rehabilitation
22Administration, an agency of the U.S. Department of Treasury;



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2    WHEREAS, The Pension Rehabilitation Administration would
3provide financially distressed plans with low-interest loans
4guaranteed by the U.S. Government; the proceeds for these loans
5would be raised by the U.S. Treasury in the public debt markets
6and are not grants from the Federal budget; the loans for
7distressed plans, such as the Central States Pension Fund,
8would be interest only for years one through 29, with principal
9repayment in the year 30, and would mandate low-risk investment
10strategies that create a high certainty of repayment; and
11    WHEREAS, The Joint Select Committee on Solvency of
12Multiemployer Pension Plans, a Joint Committee of the U.S.
13Senate and House of Representatives, is devising
14recommendations and legislation that will significantly
15improve the solvency of multi-employer pension plans,
16including consideration of the Butch Lewis Act; the Joint
17Select Committee must issue a report with its conclusions by
18November 30, 2018; and
19    WHEREAS, In developing its recommendations, the Joint
20Selection Committee is seeking input from all who may be
21impacted by the failure of the multiemployer pension funds,
22such as the State of Illinois; and



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1    WHEREAS, The Butch Lewis Act is supported by employers
2participating in the Central States Pension Fund, the U.S.
3Chamber of Commerce, the International Brotherhood of
4Teamsters, Teamsters Joint Council 25, and many labor unions
5and employers; and
6    WHEREAS, The creation of the Pension Rehabilitation
7Administration would prevent substantial harm to the economy of
8Illinois; therefore, be it
11urge the United States Congress to immediately pass the Butch
12Lewis Act and allow these vital portions of our country's
13economy to remain solvent; and be it further
14    RESOLVED, That suitable copies of this resolution be
15presented to all members of the United States House of
16Representatives and the United States Senate.