PENSION

Alison Logan
Winnipeg
Chair
 
MEMBERS:
  • Raymond Bisson, Winnipeg
  • Bill Cann, Winnipeg
  • JoAnne Hoyak, MacGregor
  • Julian Hoyak, MacGregor
  • Rudy Peters, Winnipeg
 

 

Committee Report to the Last RTAM AGM

Report to the 2018 AGM 

Respectfully submitted by JoAnne Hoyak, Chair (MacGregor)

Members: Bill Cann (Winnipeg), Julian Hoyak (MacGregor), Alison Logan (Winnipeg), Rudy Peters (Winnipeg), Peggy Prendergast (Winnipeg) 

Six committee meetings were held during the 2017-2018 year.

Major issues on the pension agenda included:

  1. Reaction to the Pension Commission’s recommendations for reforms to The Pension Benefits Act. The Pension and the Political Advocacy committees jointly with MTS submitted a response to the government.
  2. Continued vigilance and opposition to the Federal government’s Bill C-27 which may set precedence and impact existing pensions and the defined benefit security they offer now.
  3. Monitoring the status of the joint agreement with MTS and accepted by the TRAF Board as to the dispersal of the restricted surplus. TRAF has sent it to the government and it is, at present, in the hands of the Treasury Board.
  4. Appointment of an RTAM member to the TRAF Board. The protocol for the selection process has been initiated by the committee.
  5. Continued communication with senior support groups such as the Manitoba Seniors Coalition and the Canadian Coalition for Retirement Security with whom ACER-CART is connected and who submitted a brief to the Manitoba government in opposition to the Pension Commission Reform recommendations.
  6. Concern regarding the status of the COLA going forward now that Bill 45 has ended. Minister Wishart gave his assurance that the situation would simply revert to that of pre-Sale report days. The COLA as of July, 2018 is 1.15%.
  7. Continuation of the tradition of meeting with our provincial representatives to keep our issues current and at the forefront: Education and Training Minister Ian Wishart in February, NDP leader Wab Kinew and Education critic Matt Wiebe in March and also, Liberal leader Dougald Lamont in March.

The Pension Benefits Act Review

On January 10, 2018, Finance Minister Cameron Friesen announced that the review of the province’s pension laws had been completed by The Pension Committee of Manitoba.  A public consultation period with a submission deadline of February 21, 2018 was also announced at that time along with the release of a consultation paper and the commission’s recommendations for reforms to The Pension Benefits Act.
 
While RTAM developed a plan of action to respond to the recommendations of The Pension Benefits Act Review, collaborative contact with The Manitoba Teachers’ Society (MTS) was also made.  The result was the submission of a joint RTAM-MTS “Response to the Consultation Paper The Pension Benefits Act Review”.  To view the joint MTS-RTAM submission click here.
 
RTAM also belongs to the national association of retired teachers, Association canadienne des enseignantes et des enseignants retraités-Canadian Association of Retired Teachers (ACER-CART).  ACER-CART, in turn, is part of The Canadian Coalition for Retirement Security (CCRS).  CCRS also responded to the call for consultation on the The Pension Committee of Manitoba’s recommendations for reforms to The Pension Benefits Act.  To view the CCRS brief click here.
 

Download > Joint MTS - RTAM PBA Submission 21 February 2018

Download > CCRS Brief to the Pension Commission of Manitoba - CCRS - Feb 21 2018

 

 

 

Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)

The Teachers’ Pensions Restricted Surplus Regulation, 2017 (M.R. 63/2018) was registered May 18, 2018, putting in place the regulatory authority necessary to disburse the restricted surplus equally over a five year period commencing July 1, 2018.  The regulation is consistent with the joint RTAM/MTS proposal which had been accepted by the TRAF Board and submitted to government as a proposed regulation in June, 2017.

The impact for 2018 of the enactment of the Teachers’ Pensions Restricted Surplus Regulation, 2017 (M.R. 63/2018) is that the previously announced COLA of 1.15% effective July 1, 2018 will now be increased to 1.35%.

Background:

  • The TRAF Board earlier approved a 1.15% COLA effective July 1, 2018.
  • The 2/3 of CPI cap that had been in place on the annual COLA since July 1, 2008 ceased to apply effective with the July 1, 2018 COLA.
  • At a February 2018 meeting with the Minister of Education and Training, RTAM was informed that, at the time, there were no plans to extend the provision for restricting the TRAF Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) implemented in 2008 which has now expired. The calculation of COLA reverts to the provisions in place prior to 2008 as per subsection 10(7) of The Teachers’ Pensions Act.

Information on the Disposition of the Restricted Surplus

RTAM and the RTAM Pension Committee worked in the interests of all the retired Teachers’ Retirement Allowances Fund (TRAF) members in Manitoba to obtain the best possible outcome for the distribution of the restricted surplus.  We continue to work in the interests of all retired teachers with regard to pension issues in general.

1. The joint RTAM/MTS (The Manitoba Teachers’ Society) proposal has been accepted by the TRAF Board. It read as follows:“That the Restricted Surplus, as calculated by the TRAF plan actuary, at December 31, 2017, be distributed over a five year period commencing July 1, 2018 to all retired teachers”.

2. On June 28, 2017, the TRAF Board submitted a proposed regulation to government which provides for the restricted surplus to be disbursed equally over a five year period commencing July 1, 2018.  This proposal is consistent with the joint RTAM/MTS recommendation presented to the Board. 

3. The joint MTS/RTAM recommendation for disbursement, as supported by TRAF, was submitted to Government and is currently under review by the Treasury Board. At a February 2018 meeting with the Minister of Education and Training, RTAM was informed that Government is working to address a resolution.

4.  The Teachers’ Pensions Restricted Surplus Regulation, 2017(M.R. 63/2018) was registered May 18, 2018, putting in place the regulatory authority necessary to disburse the restricted surplus equally over a five year period commencing July 1, 2018.  The regulation is consistent with the joint RTAM/MTS proposal which had been accepted by the TRAF Board and submitted to government as a proposed regulation in June, 2017.
The impact for 2018 of the enactment of the Teachers’ Pensions Restricted Surplus Regulation, 2017 (M.R. 63/2018) is that the previously announced COLA of 1.15% effective July 1, 2018 will now be increased to 1.35%. 

5. The Pension Committee, through the RTAM President, continues to seek opportunities to meet with the Minister of Education and Training, as well as leaders of the opposition political parties, to discuss pension issues and concerns.

6. In March 2012, the RTAM Board adopted the RTAM Nomination Process for TRAF Board Appointment.  The policy sets out a nomination process framework to provide guidance to the RTAM Board in determining a nominee for appointment to the TRAF Board in the event that Government requests such input.

7. The RTAM Board has authorized the Pension committee to carry out the search process, according to the policy, for RTAM’s nomination for the government’s discretionary appointment of a “representative of retired plan members to the TRAF Board”.  This will ensure that, if requested by Government to provide a nominee, the RTAM Board will be prepared to respond.

8. We continue to monitor pension related issues and still would be grateful for personal stories or observations on this topic, or input of any kind, from our membership.

Pension Committee Mandate

1.    Be current with the basic aspects of the Teachers’ Retirement Allowance Fund Board, the Teacher’s Pension Act and other relevant pension matters.

2.    Advise the Board on pension issues and make recommendations for policies and actions.

3.    Assist the board in responding on pension issues on behalf of RTAM members.

4.    Assist the board in educating members, other related parties, and the public on pension issues.

5.    Establish and maintain liaison with other relevant pension groups.

6.    Carry out the research process for RTAM’s nomination for the government’s discretionary appointment of a “representative” of retired Plan members to the TRAF Board, and shall conduct the search process and make recommendations in accordance with the RTAM Nomination Process for TRAF Board Appointment.

The Pension Committee is Seeking Grassroots Input
The Pension Committee is seeking personal stories and anecdotes from retired teachers with regard to their opinions and experiences on our defined benefit pension plan, the security and sustainability of it, and the effects of Bill 45 on their personal purchasing power. Please contact any committee member or the RTAM office.


PRIORITIES for 2017/2018

1. To be aware of changes in The Pension Benefits Act and The Teachers’ Pensions Act that may affect us. Office staff will aid in monitoring this.

2. To keep abreast of pension related articles and relevant letters in print media such as those pertaining to the effects of the Federal Bill C-27.

3. To continue to work with MTS on relevant issues such as the status of the restricted surplus dispersal,

4.    To foster ongoing communications with the Government on pension issues such as the implications of the end of Bill 45.

5. To keep communications open with the TRAF Board.

6. To advocate that the Government appoint a retired teacher to the TRAF Board from RTAM’s list of recommended nominees.


WHO WE ARE

Retirement is a time of transitions. Throughout your career you belonged to the Manitoba Teachers’ Society (MTS), but upon retirement you are no longer a member. The Retired Teachers’ Association of Manitoba (RTAM) exists to serve retired teachers. We invite you to join the growing number of RTAM members and enjoy the benefits of belonging.

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