FSRA Stakeholder Advisory Committee – Pensions

Summary of the Meeting of November 26, 2019
At the FSRA Offices, 5160 Yonge Street, 14th Floor 

Stakeholder Advisory Committee Members Present:

Julie Belair – OPTrust 
Kathryn Bush – Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Gareth Gibbins – OMERS
Sean Hewitt – Toronto Transit Commission Pension Fund Society
Evan Howard – CAAT Pension Plan
Stephanie Kalinowski – Association of Canadian Pension Management (ACPM)
Hugh Kerr – Sun Life Financial
Mariana MacIntosh – Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board
Alex D. McKinnon – United Steelworkers
Wendy Mizuno – George Weston
Scott Perkin – Ontario Teachers' Federation
JP Provost – Mercer
Peter Shena – Ontario Pension Board

Board Members Present:

Bryan Davies – Chair of the Board
Brigid Murphy – Director
Kathy Bouey – Director
Joanne De Laurentiis – Director
Brent Zorgdrager – Director

Management Members Present:

Mark White – Chief Executive Officer
Glen Padassery – EVP, Policy
Stephen Power – EVP, Corporate Services
Caroline Blouin – EVP, Pensions

Corporate Secretary

Alena Thouin – Corporate Secretary and Deputy General Counsel
Margaret Kingerski – Assistant Corporate Secretary

General Comments

The Committee advised that it has been encouraged by FSRA’s progress thus far and appreciates the collaborative and transparent approach. It noted that cultural change is challenging and appreciates that this will be a journey for FSRA. The increase in pension-specific expertise on staff is very encouraging.

The Committee also noted that FSRA will likely receive more deference by the courts than its predecessor as it is a rule-making authority.

Feedback on F2020-2021 Draft Priorities and Business Plan

The Committee provided feedback with respect to FSRA’s F2020-2021 Draft Priorities and Business Plan. It advised that it supports the move towards becoming an outcomes-focused and collaborative regulator. It would like to see more burden reduction initiatives and further collaboration. The Committee expressed concern that FSRA’s priorities may be too aggressive. Ongoing discussions should continue with respect to service standards and expectations.

The Committee noted that FSRA can play a role in educating the public and generally championing financial literacy. Most people do not have a formal pension and it was felt that FSRA could have a voice improving public awareness of retirement income security and coverage. In addition, the sector does not have a minister focused specifically on pensions. FSRA could utilize the data provided by the sector to illustrate this topic with the Ministry of Finance. The Committee also noted that it would like to see FSRA establishing a liaison with the federal government and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). It was noted that the CRA could provide valuable assistance in locating missing pension plan members. To date, the CRA has declined involvement in such efforts, citing privacy concerns.