Winnipeg city administrators are going forward with plans to eliminate police overtime from pensionable income and require that police officers work longer before receiving their pension benefits, according to an email sent to city councillors.

According to the CBC, a letter was sent to both the Winnipeg Police Association and the Winnipeg Police Senior Officers’ Association from Mike Ruta, interim chief administrative officer, notifying the unions that city council “will consider changes to the police pension plan.”

Read: Soaring costs prompt Winnipeg to consider changes to police pension plan

If the plan goes through, the city could save upwards of $1.5 million annually, said Ruta, noting the extra funds could be reinvested in police operations.

In 2016, the city approached police unions about amending their defined benefit pension plan because of concerns about its sustainability. At that time, Ruta said the city spent $29.1 million to fund the plan while its members contributed $13 million.

According to the CBC, the Winnipeg Police Senior Officers’ Association and the Winnipeg Police Association are planning to fight the city’s plan.

“It will be a significant legal battle that could be expensive for both parties, but we will take every action possible to prevent the city from making unilateral changes to a benefit that was previously negotiated,” said Moe Sabourin, president of the Winnipeg Police Association, in a written statement to CBC.

The City of Winnipeg hasn’t responded to an email from Benefits Canada.

Read: Border officers’ union calls for 25-and-out pension

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Joe Nunes:

Good: Addressing both the 3:1 funding imbalance and the unreasonable cost of having an officer work lots of overtime right before retirement.

Bad: If including overtime in pensionable earnings is part of the collective agreement then it is acting in bad faith to try and unilaterally change the deal.

Monday, August 19 at 10:57 am | Reply


Given that the Canada Revenue Agency defines “pensionable earnings” nation-wide, does the City of Winnipeg have any authority to do anything?

Also, since CPP maxes out at around $60,000 of annual income, would any changes by the City have any effect on higher-wage police officers?

Monday, August 19 at 1:05 pm | Reply

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