Gerald Parsons is not happy with the process Kruger Inc. is again taking in its quest to modify pension payments into the Corner Brook mill.
The chair of the Corner Brook Pulp and Paper Union Pensioners Committee said they were approached about a month ago to defer funding to the plan, which a 10-year re-payment plan is already in place.
Negotiations followed, but an agreement could not be reached. Parsons said the company was asked not to deliver letters to pensionsers and beneficiaries, like was done in 2012. However, letters were sent out May 26, 2015.
The company’s notice requests approval to petition the Newfoundland and Labrador government to modify payments into the pension plan.
Daniel Archambault, the executive vice-president of Kruger’s industrial products division, states the company faces a substantial discrepancy between pension fund rules at the Corner Brook mill that its competitors do not. He said it would help even the playing field with its newsprint competitors and ensure the mill’s long-term viability.
Kruger outlined that, despite the increased payments they have been able to make into the fund in the past three years, its competitors have been granted additional relief measures to gain an advantage.
Meetings for employees and pensioners and beneficiaries are underway in Corner Brook and will also be held in Deer Lake.