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Regulator has ‘grave concerns’ over new pension proposal

Image: Alarichall [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

A leaked letter from the Pensions Regulator to the chairman of the Universities Superannuation Scheme reveals serious misgivings about a new option to resolve the 2018 valuation of the fund, and says the valuation deadline is likely to be missed.

On 7 May the USS made a fresh offer to resolve the long-running dispute over the valuation of its pension fund, proposing an option for 30.7 per cent joint contributions to be shared between employers and employees. However, in an email posted on the website Academic Freedom Watch, Mike Birch, director of supervision at the Pensions Regulator, wrote to David Eastwood, chairman of USS, a week later demanding information about the new offer.

The Pension Regulator has confirmed to HE that the email is genuine, and was sent in advance of a meeting of the USS trustee board on the 16 May. The letter reveals that the regulator was blind-sided by the new plan.

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