A member of the Sheet Metal and Air-Conditioning Contractors’ National Association recently told Congress that something needs to change regarding the nation’s pension system.

Carol Duncan, CEO of General Sheet Metal in Clackamas, Ore., spoke Oct. 28 before the House Committee on Education and a labor and pensions subcommittee.

She told the members that although employers like her company make major contributions to multi-company pension plans, they end up responsible for amounts far beyond those contributions.

“Funding issues are beyond the control of contributing employers and, significantly, employers ultimately hold all the risk for plan funding,” she said. “The majority of issues cannot be solved without structural changes to the defined benefit system.” 

 Duncan submitted the report “Solutions Not Bailouts” to the committee, which SMACNA helped create. It suggests ways to strengthen the system by reducing the numbers of employers that leave and allowing new companies in.