Breaking News: Western States Refiles

Last February the Western States Office and Professional Employees Pension Fund out of Portland, OR became the eleventh multiemployer (union) plan to file for benefit cuts under MPRA in an attempt to avoid insolvency. Last month that application was withdrawn. Yesterday it appeared as being refiled.

So what changed?

The best I can make out is that, per item 6 below, there are now “18 employers known to have withdrawn in the 2016 Plan Year” whereas in the original filing there were 11. “All withdrawn employers are assumed to make quarterly withdrawal liability payments, except for ATPA. Due to its recent bankruptcy filing, no withdrawal liability payments are assumed to be made by ATPA.” There was also a change in the estimate of future investment experience (item 5 below) which, coupled with the change in the employer base, revised the projections through 12/31/55 from 71.37% funded ($237,788,126 in assets with $301,707,656 in liabilities) to 137.49% funded ($120,537,956 in assets with $78,069,644 in liabilities).

Exhibit 5 letter from the original filing:

Exhibit 5 letter from the refiling:

 

From their latest 5500 filing here is the plan’s relevant data:

Plan Name: Western State Office and Professional Employees Pension Fund
EIN/PN: 94-6076144/001
Total participants @ 12/31/15: 7,781 including:
Retirees: 3,931
Separated but entitled to benefits: 2,936
Still working: 914

Asset Value (Market) @ 1/1/15: 359,268,671
Value of liabilities using RPA rate (3.51%) @ 1/1/15: $802,164,470 including:
Retirees: $478,948,578
Separated but entitled to benefits: $207,907,650
Still working: $115,308,242

Funded ratio: 44.79%
Unfunded Liabilities as of 1/1/15: $442,895,799

Asset Value (Market) as of 12/31/15: $334,210,200
Contributions: $11,847,576
Payouts: $39,045,991
Expenses: $3,050,665

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Seeing as you have scrolled down this far you might be wondering the same thing I am. How can the departure of seven more employers (one through bankruptcy) over seven months rate a refiling that helps the funded ratio (presumably because withdrawal liability payments are much higher than regular contributions) yet, as far as I can see, there is no assumption of any other employers leaving (or going bankrupt) over the next 38 years?

2 responses to this post.

  1. […] an attempt to avoid insolvency. Last August that application was withdrawn. A month later it was refiled. Today it appeared on the MPRA website as being withdrawn […]

    Reply

  2. […] to avoid insolvency. On August 11, 2017 that application was withdrawn. A month later it was refiled. On March 26, 2018 it was withdrawn again. Today it popped up on the MPRA webstie as being […]

    Reply

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