Retired Truck Drivers Fearful of Pension Cuts

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Hundreds of thousands of retired truck drivers could lose out on more than half of their pension payments in the next few months, because of a bill passed by lawmakers in Washington 2 years ago.

The Multi-Employer Pension Reform Act was a part of the Omnibus Spending Bill in 2014, which will cut pension payments to retired truck drivers, who rely on the Central States Pension Fund, anywhere between 50% and 65% on July 1st.

“This National Coordinating Committee of Multi-Employer Plans lobbied congress, [and] they slipped the bill through,” retired truck driver and Loves Park resident, Terry Randall, said. “A lot of the Senate and the House signed it because they didn’t want the country to shut down.”

Randall represents the Rock River Valley Committee to Protect Pensions. He says he’ll see a nearly 50% cut in his monthly check. The reason for the cuts is to save the fund, but Randall questions whether they’re necessary right now because there’s enough in the fund to last another 10 to 15 years.

“If the money’s going to last that long, can’t we at least put this on hold until we might come up with another viable plan that won’t be so detrimental to the participants, to the retirees themselves?” Randall said, adding he fears that if the cuts aren’t reversed, it could end up hurting tax payers in the long run.

“If you take half your money away, and you can’t pay your grocery bill, or you can’t pay your house payment, the only other option you have is depend on the government,”

Randall will be heading to Washington to rally in front of the Capitol on April 14th. He also says they’ve tried to talk to Rep. Adam Kinzinger, who supported the bill, but haven’t been successful in setting up a time to meet with him. They hope to talk with Kinzinger while in Washington.

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