B.C. takes action on PRPPs

One province is finally listening to Minister of State for Finance Ted Menzies’ persistent call to take action with pooled registered pension plans (PRPPs).

The provincial government of British Columbia tabled PRPP legislation yesterday. If approved during the spring session of parliament, B.C. will break ground on pension reform and be the first province to pass legislation since the national PRPP Act was given royal accent in June 2012.

“For years now, British Columbia has played a leading and constructive role in federal-provincial pension discussions,” said Menzies. “British Columbia leads again in tabling legislation to make this low-cost pension alternative available to the more than two-thirds of workers in British Columbia without access to a workplace pension option.”

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“This legislation will provide an additional, optional safety net for thousands of British Columbians and make it easier for them to save for retirement,” added Finance Minister Michael de Jong.

And Menzies is hopeful that other provinces will soon follow suit. “I look forward to similar steps being taken by other jurisdictions across Canada, which have contributed through consultation and collaboration to help ensure the long-term strength of Canada’s retirement income system.”

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) has openly praised the province on this move.

“CFIB applauds the B.C. government for making it easier for British Columbians to save for their retirement,” said CFIB president Dan Kelly. “We urge all provincial governments to follow B.C.’s lead, as PRPPs will be an excellent addition to the retirement savings options for small business owners and their employees.”

PRPPs could be a big step forward in retirement savings for small business employees in B.C. Kelly says the small organizations tell him the main reason that most of them do not offer any form of company retirement plan is due to the costs and administrative burden of doing so. But with PRPPs the administration costs are expected to be much lower.