In keeping with the St. Mike’s 180 commitment to transparency, accountability and good governance, USMC, in conjunction with employee union representatives (USW and UTFA), is exploring the possibility of changing our current pension offering (Retirement Plan of The University of St Michael’s College) to the University Pension Plan (UPP) https://myupp.ca/.
USMC is excited about the possibility of joining the UPP. We believe that joining the plan is good for the University and its employees in that it secures a defined benefit pension that is sustainable.
You can learn more by reviewing the material posted on this page.
Recording of the Sept. 13 presentation: https://us02web.zoom.us/rec/share/uLSztBKyXDEmAHk8uPhNBYSnfQqRIK6xjdfrSC20aH7iqFce36rBWHrpZz7zTO_w.R8XZQLaY372MHbGT
Clarification about Unreduced Early Retirement
During the presentation, there were some remarks about unreduced early retirement that may have caused some confusion, and I want to provide clarity on how early unreduced retirement works with the UPP. It is important to understand that should USMC convert to the UPP, the existing benefits earned under the USMC plan are unchanged. This means that they do not become subject to unreduced early retirement, nor do they become subject to conditional indexation. Having said that, other universities that have joined the UPP have negotiated with their employee groups to amend the provisions of their existing plan as part of the conversion process.
The USMC plan does not have an unreduced early retirement feature. This means that if you retire before the age of 65, then when your pension is calculated, it is reduced by 6% for each year earlier than 65 you retire. The reduction reflects the fact that by choosing to start your pension at a younger age, you will probably receive your pension for a longer period.
One of the attractive features of the UPP is the unreduced early retirement feature. This feature gives members additional flexibility in planning how and when they want to retire. Members can become eligible for early unreduced retirement as early as age 60 if their age plus eligible service equal at least 80 points. This is known as the “60/80 factor.” So, for a member who is 62, they would need at least 18 years of eligibility service to qualify for an early unreduced pension (62 + 18 = 80 points).
In determining if a member is eligible for unreduced early retirement, the UPP will count existing service accrued under the USMC plan as part of the eligible service. This was designed so that members joining UPP with long service could apply those years for eligibility toward the unreduced early retirement features of the UPP plan, versus starting at “year one” upon entering UPP. So, if the above member who was 62 had 15 years of service in the USMC plan and 3 years of service in the UPP plan, they have in total 18 years of total service and thus meet the (62+15+3=80) 80 points required for early unreduced retirement.
If that a member was to then retire at 62, only the post conversion UPP portion (3 years) of the pension would be calculated without a reduction. For the remaining portion (15 years), the pension attributed to the USMC service would be reduced in accordance with the terms of the USMC plan.
If you have any questions about the UPP, please reach out to your union representative, or me. We look forward to sharing more information about the UPP with you.