Pension take-back 'nightmare' for steel plant retirees

Lorain Morning Journal

LORAIN -- Dec. 1, 2099. That's the date Rick Wyers was told he will be finished paying back what he owes the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., the federal agency that took over pensions from Republic Technologies International after it went bankrupt in 2002.

''I'll be dead before it's done,'' Wyers said. ''They'll never get it back.''

Wyers, of Florence Township, is one of more than 1,000 steel plant retirees who have learned that their pension benefits were overpaid for years by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. The overpayment will be collected by a 10 percent reduction in their benefit rate, further decreasing their monthly check.

Gary Pastorius, a spokesman for the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., said federal law limits what his agency is allowed to pay retirees.

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