A PORAC member Association can join the Trust by entering into an MOU with its employer, which mandates contributions to the Trust in the same amount for every employee in the bargaining unit. The MOU can provide for employer contributions on behalf of employees, and/or to take pre-tax deductions from employees’ paychecks to pay into the Trust (or both). In order to comply with IRS guidelines, there can be no individual election to enroll, and the contributions by or on behalf of employees generally must be the same for all members of the bargaining unit.
However, there is an exception to this all-or-none rule: an Association may bargain that only a defined class within the bargaining unit, e.g., new hires, will participate in the Trust. That is, although there can be no individual employee election whether or not to join the Trust, an Association may bargain that only a certain group of employees will participate in the RMT. That may help in situations where your employer is cutting off retiree health benefits only for new hires. Please call the Trust Office if you have any questions about this feature.
Joinder fee. Generally, there is a joinder fee for an Association to join the Trust. This fee covers administrative costs to the Trust and is generally much less than the cost to form your own Trust.
For more info: Contact Ms. Suzan Kolb of Vimly Benefit Solutions (phone: (877) 808-5994) for sample MOU provisions and enrollment requirements.