Wednesday, March 20, 2013

MLB May Eliminate Working-Class Pensions

MLB has a mini-controversy on its hands this week and it has nothing to do with another failure by Team USA at the World Baseball Classic.  ESPN's Adam Rubin reports:
Major League Baseball owners, despite boasting $8 billion in annual revenue and climbing, are moving toward eliminating the pension plans of all personnel not wearing big league uniforms, sources told

The first attempt to do so, initiated last year by a small-market owner, never came to a vote after Chicago White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf chastised his brethren for being petty with the lives of ordinary people given the riches produced by the sport. A vote, which was intended to be kept secret, is now scheduled to take place at owners meetings May 8-9 in New York.

A majority of owners now favor the abolition of the pension plan, a source said.

MLB executive vice president Rob Manfred acknowledged that candid discussions on the topic have gone on for "several years," but he disputed that pensions will go away entirely.
The potential impact of eliminating the pension plan would affect much of the MLB family: front-office executives, trainers, minor league staff and scouts. Some of those personnel, particularly on the minor league level and in amateur scouting, make less than $40,000 a year and rely on pensions in retirement.

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