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Pension holders push Machinists to drop pensions

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MIKE BAKER | December 31, 2013 12:21 AM EST | AP

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SEATTLE (AP) — Machinists in the Puget Sound are under pressure to accept a Boeing contract offer that moves them away from pension plans, and much of that pressure is coming from local officials who still have pension plans.

On Monday, several political leaders gathered in Everett, Wash., to talk about the importance of having the Machinists accept a new contract this week. Of the six local leaders who called on the Machinists to accept the deal, one is already drawing pension payments while five others are expected to do so upon retirement.

Local union leaders are recommending a no vote on the contract because they feel it has too many concessions. A particular sticking point has been Boeing's insistence that workers move from a traditional pension plan to a defined-contribution retirement savings plan.