Ontario Businesses Remain Concerned About the Ontario Registered Pension Plan

Ian McLean, President & CEO

Ian McLean, President & CEO

In an open letter to Premier Kathleen Wynne, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) further echoed the long standing opinion of the Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce that the upcoming implementation of the Ontario Registered Pension Plan (ORPP) will have far reaching negative impacts on business in Ontario. And, in a recent survey administered by the OCC shows that only 26 percent of employers in the province believe they can shoulder the cost of the ORPP.

While the Chamber understands the need to enhance and innovate to allow more options for retirement savings in Ontario, we do not believe that the ORPP is the right direction, nor the most financially viable. As OCC President and CEO Allan O’Dette points out in his open letter to the Premier Wynne, the biggest point of contention in the formation of the ORPP as it stands now is it’s vague definition of “comparable” workplace pension plan.

The ORPP will penalize those employers who are already contributing to their employees’ retirement plans that are not deemed “comparable” under the government’s guidelines. This will increase costs for employers who are currently providing “non-comparable” savings plans and could actually lead to a decrease the amount of savings contributed to retirement accounts. The bottom line is that the ORPP could disrupt public-private retirement savings in Ontario for many workers in the private sector.

This is not an issue simply of the cost businesses in Ontario will be forced to take on due to the ORPP, but the real threat is to the government’s current inability to clearly define comparable pension plans.

As the ORPP scheme proceeds to implementation, much more needs to be done to explain and clarify the ORPP before its scheduled introduction in 2017 in order for businesses in Ontario to understand how it will impact them. Without further clarification there are significant ricks to many Ontarians.

Head over to the OCC’s website to read Allan O’Dette’s full open letter to Premier Wynne.

And the Greater KW Chamber encourages you to make your voice heard to your local MPP’s and the premier.