06/24/2015 06:52 EDT | Updated 06/24/2016 05:59 EDT

Public pension plans getting overhaul in Newfoundland and Labrador

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - The Newfoundland and Labrador government is moving ahead with pension plan reform for its public service.

The government says a plan announced last September has been spelled out in two bills tabled Wednesday in the legislature.

This follows the signing of an agreement by the government and the five largest unions representing public service employees.

Finance Minister Ross Wiseman says the agreement will ensure the sustainability of the defined-benefit plan.

There are about 29,000 contributing plan members in the province and about 17,500 pensioners.

The agreement provides for joint management of the plan and an equal sharing between the government and plan members in any future surpluses and deficits.

The pension plan changes come into effect on Jan. 1 and will include previously announced increases to contribution rates and changes to pension eligibility.