Youth Services Bureau pension members overwhelmingly endorse merger with CAAT

Posted for Everyone, January 4, 2018

(Toronto: January 4, 2018) Members of The Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa (YSB) pension plan joined the Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology (CAAT) Pension Plan, effective January 1, 2018.

Under the merger, the 300 active, retired and deferred pension YSB plan members will receive a pension based on the YSB plan provisions for service accrued to December 31, 2017, and a pension based on CAAT Plan provisions for service accrued after that date.

During the 90-day consent period required under provincial regulations, 99.6% of active YSB plan members voted for the merger, while no retired or deferred members objected. This overwhelming consent outshines the regulatory requirements of two-thirds of active members approving with no more than one-third of retired and deferred members objecting.

In the coming months, application will be made to the Financial Services Commission of Ontario for its consent to transfer the pension assets from the YSB pension plan to the CAAT Plan. This process is expected to be completed before the end of 2018.

As one of the largest and most comprehensive non-profit agencies in Ottawa, the YSB offers more than 30 programs and services to 3,000 youth and families every month.

The merger allows the YSB to exit the pension-management business and focus on its core competency of supporting youth and families with services in housing, mental health, youth justice, employment, health, diversity, and youth engagement.

This is the second merger of a single-employer, defined benefit pension plan with the CAAT Plan. The Royal Ontario Museum pension plan merged with the CAAT Plan in 2016.

The CAAT Plan is focused on the security of pension benefits, stability of contributions, and equity among groups and generations of members.  At its January 1, 2017, valuation, the Plan is 113.3% funded on a going-concern basis and has $1.6 billion in funding reserves.

The Plan has net assets of $9.4 billion as at January 1, 2017, available to pay pension benefits to 46,000 members and their families, and has 40 participating employers. The Plan provides members with an efficient worry-free way to build predictable retirement income without the need to become an investment expert, understand longevity risk, or to monitor the best time to retire based on investment market cycles. The Plan provides employers with the opportunity to offer an attractive pension program at a lower cost and risk level than traditional single-employer DB pension plans.

Derek Dobson, CEO and Plan Manager, CAAT Pension Plan

“We’re proud to welcome the Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa as our newest employer and I’m delighted that members of the YSB pension plan overwhelmingly approved the merger. It is a strong vote of confidence in the CAAT Plan as a modern, well-funded, sustainable pension plan.”

Quick facts about the CAAT Pension Plan

The CAAT Plan is a modern defined benefit pension plan with equal cost sharing. Decisions about benefits, contributions and investment risk are also shared equally by members and employers through their representatives on the Plan’s two governing bodies.

  • Created in 1967, the CAAT Pension Plan assumed its current jointly sponsored governance structure in 1995.
  • The Plan is sponsored by employers, represented by College Employer Council, and employees, represented by the Ontario College Administrative Staff Association (OCASA) and Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU).
  • With $9.4 billion in assets, the CAAT Plan is Ontario’s only multi-employer pension plan serving the postsecondary sector and related employers with 46,000 members from 40 employers.
  • The Plan is open to new employers from the public and private sectors that either want to merge their pension plan or simply join the Plan going forward.  
  • The CAAT Plan’s well-diversified investment portfolio has earned a 5-year average annual rate of return of over 10.5% net of investment management fees, as of January 1, 2017.
  • The CAAT Plan has appropriate contribution rates at a level adequate to secure pension benefits over the long term while maintaining a healthy funding reserve to manage through unforeseen economic and demographic shocks.

Media Contact:
John Cappelletti,
Manager Stakeholder Relations
CAAT Pension Plan
416.673.9040, mobile 416-720-7853,