Congressman Rooney stated, “H.R. 397 is putting taxpayers on the hook for a broken system. Time and again, the management of Multiemployer pensions (MEP) has proven entirely irresponsible.
“Currently, 95 percent of participants in multiemployer pensions are in plans that are less than 60 percent funded. In 2018, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that a government bailout of the MEP system would cost American taxpayers over $100 billion, but the actual shortfall of these plans exceeds $630 billion. Bailing out the corrupt and imprudent actions of private firms is not the responsibility of the American public- it lies with the employers and unions who made those promises to the participants.
“Further, an MEP bailout sets a dangerous precedent for another pension system in crisis: state pensions. The state pension system currently has a $1.28 trillion funding gap, however this deficit is not distributed equally among all states. Just like the federal government should not bail out private firms, states with mostly-solvent pension funds should not be required to bear the burden for unfunded states.
“The Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pensions Act sets a dangerous precedent that unfairly burdens hardworking taxpayers with the disastrous outcomes of risks taken by private firms. The multiemployer pension system is broken, and this bill does nothing to fix it.