Kaptur urges immediate action to provide pension relief

January 10, 2018
Press Release
Pushes for passage of bipartisan Butch Lewis Act

Washington, D.C. — As one of her first actions in 2018, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), the longest-serving woman in Congress and Dean of the Ohio Delegation, took to the House floor to urge Congress and President Donald Trump to act and provide pension relief to thousands of retirees and workers through the bipartisan Butch Lewis Act of 2017

“Congress needs to step up and secure the pension benefits these workers have earned,” said Kaptur in her floor speech. “And there should be no pension cuts for workers who contributed to their own plans, and should have a right to the money that they invested.”

“Congress can no longer kick the can down the road. This problem does not go away if Congress continues to ignore it. Rather the financial stress mounts for the retirement funds and of course for the retirees and their families,” Kaptur continued.

Watch the video here.

In December, Kaptur sent a bipartisan letter to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI), requesting action to address the looming crisis in America’s private pensions, which puts the retirement of millions at risk. The letter was signed by Reps. David B. McKinley (R-WV), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Debbie Dingell (D-MI) and Don Young (R-AK).  Read the full letter here

Recently Kaptur shared the stories of several retirees and workers who discussed the importance of their pension and how many retirees have paid into this earned benefit for 30 plus years. Watch those videos here

BACKGROUND:

Kaptur is a cosponsor of several efforts to address the pension crisis and is a leader in Congress to protect the pensions of millions of Americans whose retirement is at risk through no fault of their own.

In December 2014, amidst the threat of a government shutdown, Congress approved and President Obama signed a spending bill that included non-germane provisions that allowed for dramatic cuts to financially troubled multiemployer pensions. Under this provision, the pension benefits of retirees could be cut by 70 percent or more after a complicated set of reviews and Treasury Department approvals were completed. Before the law was changed, it was illegal for an employer to cut the pension benefits retirees had earned.

Kaptur has championed the Butch Lewis Act and her bill, the Keep our Pension Promises Act, which establishes a legacy fund within the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation to ensure that multiemployer pension plans can continue to provide pension benefits to every eligible American for decades to come. This legislation is paid for by closing two tax loopholes that allow the wealthiest Americans to avoid paying their fair share of taxes. For a one-pager on KOPPA bill click here.

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