Horner responds to referral of pension bills to committee
President of Treasury Board and Minister of Finance Doug Horner issued the following statement regarding the amendments to refer Bill 9, the Public Sector Pension Plans Amendment Act, and Bill 10, the Employment Pension (Private Sector) Plans Amendment Act to an all-party committee.
“The case for pension reform is clear. Defined benefit pension plans around the world are facing real challenges that jeopardize their long-term sustainability.
“I will not turn a blind eye to these challenges. My number one priority has, and will continue to be, protecting pension plans for as many Albertans as possible. This is the right thing to do for everyone involved.
“That said, I’m hearing concerns from stakeholders about some of the provisions in these pieces of legislation. Upon reflection, I believe the right course of action is to briefly hit the pause button and refer Bills 9 and 10 to the all-party Standing Committee on Alberta’s Economic Future for further consideration and comments.
“For Bill 9, I’ve asked the committee to further examine how the long-term sustainability and affordability of the plans can be managed, taking into consideration intergenerational fairness for members and taxpayers. I’ve asked the committee to conduct their discussions with the view of protecting the defined benefit pension promise.
“While Bill 10 impacts non-public sector pension plans, I would like to take the opportunity to discuss the issues with the broader community. As a result, I have referred it to the committee for further consideration and comments.
“I’ve also asked the committee to provide their feedback once the Legislature resumes sitting in the fall.
“Our government remains fully committed to pension reform and has not weakened its resolve to find the best solution for plan members, employers and taxpayers. To ensure a successful pension future, we must continue to work with stakeholders and rebuild relationships. This new step will help us further achieve that goal.”