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U.S. Congress Members Meet in Columbus for Special Pension Meeting

photo of pension meeting
More than 60,000 Ohio workers could be impacted if the issue is not resolved.

Members of the U.S. Congress left Capitol Hill and held a special meeting in Columbus on the national pension crisis. Pension plans for more than 1 million union workers and retirees are in danger of collapse if something isn’t done soon. More than 60,000 Ohio workers could be impacted.

Union members from around the country traveled to Columbus, making their plea to Congress. They represent a range of sectors and professions, from coal miners and Teamsters to candymakers. The union members say they spent their lives working toward earning their pension, but those funds are drying up.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, said it was important to connect union workers with lawmakers.

“This whole industrial Midwest has been hit because of Wall Street malfeasance and other economic factors that have caused these pensions to almost collapse, and we have an obligation to fix this,” he said.

Brown’s proposal would offer low-interest, 30-year loans. But opponents call that a taxpayer-funded bailout.

Andy Chow is a general assignment state government reporter who focuses on environmental, energy, agriculture, and education-related issues. He started his journalism career as an associate producer with ABC 6/FOX 28 in Columbus before becoming a producer with WBNS 10TV.