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Teamster Pensions Safe, For Now

Teamsters for a Democratic Union

There's good news for thousands of retired members of the Teamsters Union. The Treasury Department has denied a request from the Central States Pension Fund to cut their benefits.

Treasury appointed Kenneth Feinberg to study the request, and Friday announced his decision, saying the application was rejected because quote "it used flawed investment assumptions, did not distribute the cuts equally among members, and because the notice sent to members was overly technical."

Last year Central States proposed cuts of up to 70 per cent in payments to retirees starting this summer, saying without drastic cuts, it would run out of money within ten years. 

Retirees from the Quad Cities and many other states held meetings and protests, including one last month in Washington DC. And Feinberg said their efforts influenced his decision.

A release from the retirees says they won "this phase of the war, but the threat to Teamster pensions continues." And the union says it will continue working with Congress and the federal government to find a solution to the pension crisis.

Central States says it's disappointed with Treasury’s decision, "as we believe the rescue plan provided the only realistic solution to avoiding insolvency." 

A native of Detroit, Herb Trix began his radio career as a country-western disc jockey in Roswell, New Mexico (“KRSY, your superkicker in the Pecos Valley”), in 1978. After a stint at an oldies station in Topeka, Kansas (imagine getting paid to play “Louie Louie” and “Great Balls of Fire”), he wormed his way into news, first in Topeka, and then in Freeport Illinois.