On February 25, 2016, the Ontario government released its 2016
Budget (the "Budget"). Not surprisingly, the Budget
included a number of pension related announcements. In this
Communique, we review those announcements.
Ontario Retirement Pension Plan ("RPP")
As expected, the Ontario government confirmed its commitment to
the ORPP and its pledge that, by 2020, all eligible workers will be
covered by the ORPP or a comparable workplace plan. As reported in
our January Labour and Employment Law Communique The Ontario Retirement Pension Plan – An
Update, the Ontario government announced a number of ORPP
design elements earlier this year. In the Budget, the government
confirmed that it will be introducing legislation outlining the
design elements in spring 2016. The legislation will focus on
employer eligibility, benefit calculations, and the compliance and
With respect to enrolment in the ORPP, the government indicated
that the ORPP Administration Corporation will launch the employer
verification and enrolment process in 2017. It also confirmed, as
was first announced on February 16th, that the implementation of
the ORPP will be delayed by one year from January 1, 2017 to
January 1, 2018.
Collaboration on National Pension Solution
In the Budget, the Ontario government reiterated its commitment
to work with the federal government and the other provinces and
territories on CPP reform as part of a "national pension
Solvency Funding Review and Temporary Solvency Funding
To assist sponsors of single-employer defined benefit pension
plans facing funding pressures, the government has initiated a
review of the current solvency funding framework. A stakeholder
reference group is being established and a consultation paper will
be released in spring 2016.
Draft regulations extending temporary solvency funding relief
measures for private sector plans, originally introduced in 2009
and 2012, will be posted for consultation in spring 2016.
Target Benefit Multi-Employer Pension Plans
In summer 2015, the government released a consultation paper on
target benefit multi-employer pension plans ("MEPPs"). In
the Budget, the government committed to continue consulting with
affected stakeholders on all aspects of a target benefit MEPP
Additional Legislative Measures
Pension advisory committees ("PACs"): Draft
regulations under the Pension Benefits Act to facilitate
the establishment of PACs were posted for public comment in the
fall 2015. In the Budget, the government indicated that it will be
proposing additional legislative changes to enable implementation
of PACs and that the regulations will be finalized later this
Pooled registered pension plans ("PRPPs"):
The government announced that it intends to introduce amendments to
the Pooled Registered Pension Plans Act, 2015 to
facilitate harmonization with other jurisdictions. Supporting
regulations are under development. The government will also be
developing an appropriate comparability test for the purposes of
Teachers' Pension Plan Act: The government will be
proposing amendments to this Act in respect of the re-employment
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