Ontario will introduce legislation later this year to implement a new legislative and regulatory framework for target benefit multi-employer pension plans.

The province announced on Thursday that it intends to introduce legislation in the fall, and regulations in 2018, to implement a new framework that will alter the requirements for these plans. It plans to consult on the details of the new framework and transition arrangements. In the meantime, the government is extending the temporary solvency funding exemption that is currently in place for these plans until August 2018.

The new framework would grant a permanent exemption to these plans from funding on a solvency basis, while also requiring them to finance a reserve to help deal with adverse events, such as poor investment returns; improve transparency into how plans are operated and governed; and, adopt measures to lower the risk of benefit reductions.

“Our government believes everyone in Ontario deserves a secure retirement after a lifetime of working,” says Charles Sousa, Ontario’s minister of finance, in a statement. “With these changes, target benefit multi-employer pension plans will remain a sustainable source of income for retirees, and businesses will be able to continue to grow and thrive.”

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