Regina Civic Pension Plan talks break down, says union
About 7,000 current employees and current pensioners are facing uncertainty for their retirements
The dispute over Regina's Civic Pension Plan appears no closer to being resolved.
Kirby Benning, chair of the Pension and Benefits Committee, said the City has walked away from negotiations.
"Instead of working with plan members to finalize a proposal on dispute resolution, the City has decided to go its own way and turn its back on the work we have done together in the past," Benning said in a news release. "It has made it clear that it does not want to negotiate a timely dispute resolution mechanism or jointly promote the signed deal we have."
Glen Davies, city manager, said he is surprised and concerned about that statement.
"We're disappointed that the Employees' Group would suggest that the Employers have walked away from the table," Davies said in a news release. "We weren't satisfied with the discussions, but we finished the day with the understanding that we would go back to our teams to talk about prospective meeting dates. We don't understand the statement from the Employees' Group."
Davies said he remains committed to meet any time.
Benning said he believes the City will be writing a submission on its own to the Superintendent that deviates from the signed Letter of Intent.
"The City seems to prefer to make submissions on its own rather than negotiating a joint settlement," Benning said. "We call on the City to abandon its obstructionism and to work with employee groups to implement the deal that would save the City money while respecting a modest and decent defined benefit pension for its hard workers - just as it agreed it would."
About 7,000 current employees and current pensioners are facing uncertainty for their retirements after the provincial regulator threatened to wind up the pension plan, which has a large deficit.
The largest groups are current and retired workers from the city (with 2,936 plan members) and the Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region (with 2,448 plan members).
According to the city, the plan - as of 2013 - has a funding shortfall of $240 million. The city's calculation includes a "safety margin" of 10 per cent of the liabilities. Without the safety margin, the deficit is about $117 million.