When automaker, General Motors, went through bankruptcy in 2009, about 20,000 non-union, salaried retirees from Delphi saw their pensions slashed, and other benefits like health and life insurance dropped completely. Those cuts were not applied to all Delphi union workers. WYSO’s Jerry Kenney reports, fingers are now pointing at the US Treasury Department for not applying those cuts evenly for all Delphi workers.
In a press conference with reporters, Congressman Mike Turner says between 1000 and 1500 Delphi retirees here in the Miami Valley were affected by those pension cuts. That was not the case for United Auto Worker retirees, members of the UAW, who kept their pensions and medical benefits. There is some controversy now about where the decision to let union workers keep their pensions, while cutting the pensions of non-union workers came from.
Turner said, “The Obama Administration has] previously said that the pension decisions were made by General Motors, then they said they were made by PPGC, the emails that are now surfacing clearly show that this was ran by treasury and back door deals with the Auto Task Force, the PPGC and of course General Motors being acquired by the taxpayers through the Treasury were all being coordinated through the treasury department, resulting in what we believe may be illegal activity, but is definitely improper activity…"
Tom Rose of Dayton worked for GM for 39 years – the last 9 years were at Delphi. During the press conference, he stated that [he felt] "absolutely betrayed and I don’t understand why I was designated as a ‘loser.’ I lost all of my life insurance, all of my healthcare for my family and myself, and in my case I also suffered a 40 percent pension cut… So what I don’t understand is how can our own government pick winners and losers amongst its own citizens.”
Congressman Turner says the emails surfacing as a result of both the Delphi Salaried Retirees Association lawsuit and congressional hearings are in direct conflict with previous testimony from Obama administration officials. He’s calling for ongoing investigations with House Oversight and Government Reform Committee of the Treasury Department’s involvement.