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Musicians Union Applauds Bipartisan Pension Reform Bill

The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM) applauded the reintroduction yesterday of bipartisan pension reform legislation by U.S. Representative Richard Neal (D-MA).

“Musicians and other working people deserve to keep the pensions they earned,” said AFM International President Ray Hair. “We thank Representative Neal for reintroducing the Butch Lewis Act. We also thank the nine lawmakers from both sides of the aisle who have already co-sponsored the bill. Working together to ensure that America’s multi-employer pension plans remain solvent is critical for current and future retirees.”

The Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pensions Act, also known as the Butch Lewis Act, would ensure that all promised benefits are paid by creating a new office within the U.S. Treasury Department called the Pension Rehabilitation Administration (PRA). The PRA would issue bonds backed by the U.S. Treasury to finance loans to distressed pension plans so they can remain solvent and continue providing retirement security for retirees and workers for decades to come.

Representative Neal first introduced the Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pensions Act in November 2017. U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) introduced a Senate version of the bill called the Butch Lewis Act last year.

Over 300 multiemployer pension plans, including the American Federation of Musicians and Employers’ Pension Fund, are financially struggling.