Dutch shipping sector scheme to lose mandatory status

first_imgHijlke Hijlkema, the chairman of the pension fund, attributed the lack of support to the structure of the sector, with its 1,100 affiliated companies employing an average of just four staff.“They comprise many unattached entrepreneurs, skippers who are averse to too many rules and obligations,” he argued. Credit: Erich WestendarpIngrid Blom, responsible for social affairs at the employer organisations CBRB and BLN-Schuttevaer, said that the social partners wanted to develop new, non-mandatory pension arrangements, in order to generate sufficient scale and lower barriers for employers to join.However, both Blom and Klein said this would require extending the compulsory status of the pension fund by at least one year to allow for the transition.Hijlkema said he feared that suspending the scheme’s mandatory status would lead to a domino effect.“As large firms already pay wages from abroad and avoid mandatory participation, suspension may also tempt other employers to do the same,” he said. “This would lead to a vicious circle, with ever-increasing costs for the remaining companies.”Last year, the pension fund spent €327 per participant on pensions administration.At the end of last June, its funding ratio stood at 118.3%. Its financial position enabled the scheme to grant its participants and pensioners inflation compensation of 1.27%.The shipping scheme reported a 2% loss on investments. It has 4,985 workers, 11,335 deferred members and 2,910 pensioners. The €970m Dutch sector scheme for the Rhine and inland shipping is likely to lose its mandatory status, as not enough employers support the current compulsory participation.In its annual report for 2018, the Pensioenfonds Rijn- en Binnenvaart said that 40.7% of active participants were employed by companies affiliated with an industry organisation that had requested mandatory participation.This figure must be at least 50% for the pension fund to keep its legal mandatory status, and both the pension fund and its social partners have warned that the necessary improvement is unlikely be achieved before the deadline in May next year.According to Bert Klein, trustee at trade union Nautilus International, possible alternatives – such as setting up a employer organisation dedicated to pensions, or a merger with another sector scheme – had already been ruled out “as they would create new problems”.last_img read more

Jefferson County jailer tests positive for COVID-19

first_imgMadison, IN—According to Sheriff David Thomas, on Wednesday, April 22, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department received lab confirmation that one of our jail officers tested positive for COVID-19. The officer last reported for duty on the evening of Wednesday, April 15.During the COVID-19 screening process in our COVID-19 Checkpoint, the officer was found to meet criteria devised by the jail medical staff and based on CDC recommendations which denied him access into the facility. The officer was immediately sent home without ever entering the facility. The jail officer did not have close contact with any inmates or jail staff for more than 48 hours prior to his presentation of symptoms according to Sheriff Thomas.The Jefferson County Jail is taking extra precautions to keep staff and inmates safe.  This includes all the officers wearing gloves and masks as necessary and all areas are being cleaned often and in accordance with CDC recommendations.  They also have multiple handwashing stations available to workers and inmates and hand sanitizer.The Sheriff has also waived all medical co-pays for any inmate who may present COVID-19 symptoms.  According to Sheriff Thomas, officials are screening all new book-ins and quarantining them for 14 days prior to transferring them to the cell blocks.last_img read more

Women’s hockey: Badgers head west to start 2015-16 campaign

first_imgAs the summer becomes a distant memory, the Wisconsin women’s hockey team heads west to start the season.With the calendar marching toward October, the realities of fall are setting in, and the Badgers are ready for the autumnal awakening. The end of September means the beginning of a long journey for head coach Mark Johnson and his team.Entering his 14th season at the helm, Johnson was optimistic about the start of the regular season, he said at his news conference Monday afternoon.“We have been practicing for eight or 10 days, and certainly as a coaching staff excited about the way the players came back in to start school,” Johnson said. “They spent the summer working out, conditioning and are in a good place right now, so the fun part is to get ourselves organized for game week.”Coming off a successful season that saw UW bested by Minnesota in the Frozen Four, the Badgers enter the season younger and with minutes to fill. This poses a challenge for Johnson and his staff, but the early indications look positive.“We have everybody except one of our incoming freshman able to spend the summer here, and it showcases it,” Johnson said. “They took that seriously, put themselves in a position to start the season in a good place.”With a large youth movement, the Badgers will look for a veteran presence to lead them. To guide the relatively inexperienced squad, Johnson has tapped senior Courtney Burke as captain.To open the season, the Badgers will ditch the surprisingly cooperative Madison weather this week and instead fly to San Jose, California, to prepare for their season opening showcase series against Providence.UW faces off at 9 p.m. Friday night and will make the quick turnaround for their final tilt against the Friars at 5 p.m. Saturday.The trip to the West Coast offers the Badgers the chance to not only get their feet wet as a unit, but to act as ambassadors for women’s hockey. Johnson was excited for the exposure players like Annie Pankowski — a Laguna Hills, California native — will receive.“A lot of young players look up to her, and I’m sure she is going to need a few [tickets],” Johnson said.Instead of flying back to Madison right away, the team will remain in the Golden State until Sunday to put on a youth clinic for girls in San Jose and the surrounding areas.“It gives the players a chance to show some of the tips that got them to be a Division I player to these young kids,” Johnson said. “And hopefully it inspires them to continue with their careers and maybe one day get the opportunity to play college hockey.”last_img read more