Straight Talk

Addressing the top myths about the Comprehensive Plan Review

This special bulletin provides important information about the Comprehensive Plan Review. In light of materials that have been circulating about the change proposals, we are using this edition of “Straight Talk” to provide clarity around misunderstandings or inaccuracies that you may have seen.

Top three myths about the Comprehensive Plan Review:

For more myths and facts, keep reading or skip ahead to “Setting the record straight”.

Background

In October 2017, the OMERS Sponsors Corporation (SC) began direct consultation with Sponsors. This conversation began with sponsors because of the role they play in the governance of the OMERS plan. Sponsors nominate members of both the OAC and SC Boards, and the SC Board is responsible for the design of the Plan. The goal of the consultation is to ensure – given the realities that OMERS faces – that the Plan remains sustainable, meaningful and affordable for both members and employers. 
 
The OMERS SC has communicated extensively the work the Board has done as part of the Comprehensive Plan Review. Over the past 12 months, members of the SC management team and Board have:

  • met regularly with sponsors and other key stakeholders to discuss plan issues; 
  • conducted dozens of meetings with union, employer and member representatives; 
  • hosted member webcasts and responded to thousands of member questions; and
  • provided formal communications to stakeholder groups, including members. 

We have been open and transparent as decisions were made – and information was available and respectful of varying views and perspectives. At this time, it has become necessary to provide clarity and to directly address some of the inaccuracies and misunderstandings that we are seeing in public conversations. 
 
This edition of Straight Talk responds directly to questions that we have received, and to inaccuracies or misunderstandings that have surfaced in discussions over the past few months. It should help to clarify things – and to ease some of your concerns.

Go to Myth #1

Key reminders

Here are a few essential things to keep in mind:
  • No changes have been made at this point. The SC Board will vote on final changes at the Board meeting on November 15th. As always, Plan changes require a two-thirds affirmative vote by the SC Board.
  • The granting of conditional indexing, in full or in part, would not depend on full funding. The intent is to grant the maximum sustainable level of indexing. If the plan’s financial health does deteriorate, the Board would still determine, based on a 2/3rd majority vote, what level of indexing would be granted.
  • Changes, if any, are unlikely to take effect before January 1, 2021. That would give us at least two full years to finalize administrative processes and systems requirements. It would also give current members two more years to accrue (earn) benefits under the current Plan – and to prepare for any changes that might impact them.
  • Any approved changes will apply only to service after the effective date of the change. The current rules will apply to all benefits accrued (earned) before the effective date.
  • Any changes will have no impact on current retirees or members who retire before the effective date. The changes, if any, will only impact members who accrue (earn) pension benefits after the effective date of the change.