05/06/2014 04:09 EDT | Updated 07/06/2014 05:59 EDT

New Brunswick government introduces bill to overhaul teachers' pension plan

FREDERICTON - The New Brunswick government has introduced legislation to create a new pension plan for the province's teachers.

The Teachers Pension Plan Act will formalize an agreement reached between the government and the New Brunswick Teachers' Federation last month.

Finance Minister Blaine Higgs says the agreement makes the pension plan affordable and sustainable.

Higgs had been pushing for changes to the pensions, saying the government can't continue to make special payments that have averaged $83 million a year over the last decade.

Like other public sector plans that have been changed, Higgs says the teachers' plan will reach a 50-50 funding ratio between the province and the teachers.

The federation has about 9,000 current members and about 7,000 retirees.