Sunday, January 21, 2024

House Probe Starts After $127M in Bailout Funds Paid to Dead Teamsters’ Pension Plan; Biden’s American Rescue Plan Paid $127M to Dead Teamsters’ Pension Plan: Watchdog

House probe starts after $127M in bailout funds paid to dead Teamsters’ pension plan:
The Biden administration is facing a new congressional probe after an agency that distributed tens of billions of dollars from the American Rescue Plan failed to stop $127 million from going to deceased participants in a Teamsters’ pension fund.
The House Education and Workforce Committee sent a letter on Tuesday to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), demanding records related to the agency’s “mismanagement” and “overpayment” to the union pension plan, according to a copy of the missive exclusively obtained by The Post.
“As part of this investigation, the Committee requests documents and information relating to PBGC’s disbursal of these payments and its plan to recoup these significant taxpayer funds,” Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions Chairman Bob Good (R-Va.) wrote.
“Taxpayers rightfully expect agencies like PBGC to take the necessary measures to ensure that their funds are protected and spent wisely. Instead, PBGC’s reckless disregard of prudent steps is a case study of waste and abuse. The Committee intends to conduct robust oversight of PBGC’s negligence, including possible testimony before the Committee.”
A Nov. 1 memo from PBGC’s Office of Inspector General found the International Brotherhood of Teamsters’ pension fund received money for 3,479 dead members out of $35.8 billion allocated from President Biden’s 2021 American Rescue Plan.
The federal auditor revealed that PBGC failed to consult the Social Security Administration’s Full Death Master File (DMF) before distributing the dollars to the Teamsters’ Central States Pension Fund, which includes almost 350,000 members and is one of the largest multiemployer plans in the nation. --->READ MORE HERE
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Biden’s American Rescue Plan paid $127M to dead Teamsters’ pension plan: watchdog:
Hold your horses, Joe!
President Biden’s American Rescue Plan authorized $35.8 billion for a Teamsters’ pension scheme — but the federal agency overseeing the payments failed to prevent $127 million from going to a fund with dead participants, according to an inspector general’s report.
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s Inspector General found the International Brotherhood of Teamsters’ pension received money for 3,479 deceased members, a Nov. 1 memo from the office shows.
The federal agency was required to request a death audit from the plan, known as the Central States Pensions Funds, but never verified the accuracy of its information before the money went out.
Central States is one of the largest multi-employer pension funds in the country and can make use of commercial vendors to perform death audits, but in a Nov. 2 statement in response to the watchdog report, the PBGC cited “limitations” on those vendors’ accuracy.
“PBGC’s final rule requires that SFA applicant plans certify the accuracy of the data, including a requirement to submit documentation of a death audit, identification of the service provider conducting the audit, and a copy of the results of the audit provided to the plan administrator by the service provider,” a spokesperson told The Post.
“Pension plans don’t want to be paying out money to dead people,” PBGC watchdog Nicholas Novak told The Post, but noted the agency could have consulted the Social Security Administration’s master death file to obtain the information.
PBGC claimed funds were never directly paid to Teamsters’ individual pensions — and said it would not try to recover the funds.
“OIG’s June 12, 2023, White Paper, ‘Searching Plan Records for Deceased Participants,’ highlighted limitations on the accuracy of commercial vendors’ death audits. In response, PBGC promptly revised the application review process to require an independent death audit for all pending and prospective SFA applications,” PBGC’s statement read. --->READ MORE HERE
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