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Pa. Builders Association ordered to restore $5M to benefits trust

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of
Pennsylvania
ruled that the Pennsylvania Builders Association (PBA), its
subsidiary Builders Services Inc. (BSI) and trustees of the group’s benefit
trust must restore $5 million to the association’s benefit trust, and pay a

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of
Pennsylvania
ruled that the Pennsylvania Builders Association (PBA), its
subsidiary Builders Services Inc. (BSI) and trustees of the group’s benefit
trust must restore $5 million to the association’s benefit trust, and pay a
$500,000 fine for allegedly misusing trust assets, the U.S. Department of Labor today announced.

The lawsuit lodged by U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao alleges that trustees misused plan assets to pay royalties to Lemoyne-based PBA
from 2000 to 2007, administrative costs to BSI over the same period and for
political lobbying from 2002 to 2004, according to the department.

The trust is sponsored by PBA, and BSI administers it. It
provided health, life insurance, dental, vision and temporary disability
benefits to 12,616 participants as of 2006, according to the Department of
Labor.

The ruling also bars trustees from using plan assets to pay
royalties or licensing fees to PBA, prevents trustees from contracting with PBA
for administrative services in exchange for payment and prohibits the use of
trust assets for lobbying, according the department. Trustees must receive
eight hours of fiduciary training each year for the next five years as required
by the ruling.

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