Part III Annual Benefit Fund Plan Document

Section 1: DefinitionsSection 2: Benefits & EligibilitySection 3: General Provisions • Section 4: Amendment and Termination

SECTION 1. DEFINITIONS

1.01. AGREEMENT AND DECLARATION OF TRUST. The term "Agreement and Declaration of Trust" as used herein shall mean the Agreement and Declaration of Trust entered into as of April 1, 1986, establishing the ITPEU Annual Benefit Fund, including any amendments thereto or modification thereof.

1.02. ANNIVERSARY DATE. The term "Anniversary Date" shall mean the date on which an Employee commences employment with an Employer, or the date of commencement of employment to perform similar work at the Installation where he or she is employed when any benefit becomes due hereunder, as an employee of a predecessor contractor, and each succeeding annual anniversary following twelve (12) months of continuous service.

1.03.  ANNUAL BENEFIT FUND. The term "Annual Benefit Fund" or "Fund" shall mean the ITPEU Annual Benefit Fund, comprising this Plan, the Agreement and Declaration of Trust referred to in Section 1.01 hereof, and the Collective Bargaining Agreements referred to in Section 1.05 hereof.

1.04.  BENEFICIARY. The term "Beneficiary" as used herein shall mean a person, other than an Employee, who is receiving or entitled to receive benefits from the Fund by reason of the death of an eligible employee.

1.05. COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT. The term "Collective Bargaining Agreement" shall mean any collective bargaining agreement now or hereafter in effect between any Employer and the Union, which provides for contributions by such Employer to the Annual Benefit Fund.

1.06.  CONTRIBUTIONS. The term "Contributions" shall mean the payment required to be made to the Fund by an Employer pursuant to the terms of a Collective Bargaining Agreement. 

1.07. EMPLOYEE. The term "Employee" or "Employees" shall mean such employees on whose behalf an Employer has so agreed to make contributions to the Annual Benefit Fund.

1.08.  EMPLOYER. The term "Employer" or "Employers" shall mean any Employer who is, or who hereafter becomes, obligated to contribute to the Annual Benefit Fund pursuant to the terms of a collective bargaining agreement, or other written instrument, with the Union.

1.09. HOUR OF SERVICE. The term "Hour of Service" shall mean with respect to any Employee:

Each hour for which an Employer makes, or is required to make, direct payment of wages to such Employee for the performance of duties.  Such hours shall be credited to the Employee for the computation period or periods in which the duties are performed. 

1.10. INSTALLATION. The term "Installation" shall mean all facilities covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement (and service contract when pertinent) regardless of geographical location.

1.11. PLAN. The term "Plan" as used herein shall mean the rules and regulations hereinafter set forth.

1.12. QUALIFIED DOMESTIC RELATIONS ORDER. The term "Qualified Domestic Relations Order" shall mean any order signed by a judge of a court of record pursuant to the Domestic Relations Law of any State of the United States relating to a property settlement, child support or alimony, provided the order meets the following requirements:

(a)  the Employee and the "alternate payee" (the person who is to share in the Employee's benefit) must be specifically identified with mailing addresses;

(b)  The order must clearly state what is to be paid to the alternate payee and when;

(c) The order generally may not require payments in a form or under an option not otherwise provided by this Plan; and

(d)  It may not require this Plan to pay benefits greater than the benefits provided herein.

1.13. SEASONAL EMPLOYMENT. The term “Seasonal Employment” shall refer to all employment for special projects such as ROTC, National Guard, etc., with an Employer between Memorial Day and Labor Day (inclusive) during any single calendar year, provided that the Employer designates such employment as “Seasonal Employment” on its monthly reporting form submitted to the Fund.

1.14. SERVICE. The term "Service" shall mean the whole span of continuous employment with a present Employer, and with predecessor contractors in the performance of similar work at the same Installation, not including any employment as an employee of any Federal, State or Local agency.

1.15. STANDARD BENEFIT PACKAGE. The term “Standard Benefit Package” shall refer to the vacation, holiday, sick leave, training, bereavement, jury duty and educational  benefits, specified at Sections 2.02, 2.06, 2.09, 2.12, 2.14, 2.16, and2.18 hereof . 

1.16. TRUSTEES. The term "Trustees" as used herein shall mean the Board of Trustees established by the Agreement and Declaration of Trust and the persons who at any time are acting in such capacity pursuant to the provisions of that Agreement.

1.17. UNION. The term "Union" shall mean the Industrial, Technical & Professional Employees Union, AFL-CIO, and any designated affiliate thereof. 

1.18. YEAR OF SERVICE. The term "Year of Service" with respect to any Employee shall mean any period of twelve (12) consecutive months of service beginning on the date such Employee commences employment, or any anniversary thereof, during which such Employee is not absent from work for more than one (1) working day for reasons other than paid vacation, holiday, sick leave, bereavement leave, jury duty, employer approved leaves of absence or work-related illness or injury, provided, however, that such absence shall not constitute a break in service if contributions to the Fund on behalf of such Employee resume within six (6) months after such unexcused absence, unless the Fund is notified of such Employee's termination by the Employer within such six (6) month period.

SECTION 2.  BENEFITS AND ELIGIBILITY

2.01. GENERAL RULE REGARDING BENEFIT STRUCTURE.

The benefits provided by the Plan shall be governed by collective bargaining between the Union and the Employers.  The Fund shall pay such vacation, holiday, sick leave, training, bereavement, and jury duty benefits as are specified in the pertinent Collective Bargaining Agreement.  If the Collective Bargaining Agreement does not specify the benefits to be provided by the Fund, or provides that such benefits shall be those specified in the Standard Benefit Package, the Employees covered by such Collective Bargaining Agreement shall receive the benefits contained in the Standard Benefit Package as defined at Section 1.15.  The educational benefits provided by this Plan shall only be provided as part of the Standard Benefit Package.

2.02 VACATION BENEFITS.

(a) Each Employee who has satisfied the eligibility requirements set forth in Section 2.03 hereof shall be entitled to the following vacation benefits:

  1. Two (2) weeks paid vacation (10 days) after one (1) year of service;
  2. Three (3) weeks paid vacation (15 days) after five (5) years of continuous service;
  3. Four (4) weeks paid vacation (20 days) after ten (10) years of continuous service; and
  4. Five (5) weeks paid vacation (25 days) after fifteen (15) years of continuous service. 

(b) The amount of paid vacation which an Employee is entitled to receive shall be calculated as follows:

  1. Determining the total number of benefit hours paid by this Fund plus the total hours for which contributions have been made for such Employee during the Year of Service which creates eligibility for vacation benefits under Section 2.03 hereof;
  2. Dividing such total Hours of Service by 48;
  3. Applying the resulting average weekly hours to the table set out at Section 2.20 hereof in order to determine the daily benefit hours for such vacation pay;
  4. Multiplying the resulting daily benefit hours by the number of days of paid vacation to which the Employee is entitled;
  5. Multiplying the result by the hourly rate of pay in effect on the date such Employee becomes eligible for the vacation benefit in question.

For example, if an Employee entitled to one week of paid vacation (5 days) has had 1,040 hours contributed on his behalf to the Fund by his or her Employer during the Year of Service which creates eligibility for vacation benefits, such number of hours shall be divided by 48 for a resulting number of hours of 21.66 hours per week.  According to the table set forth at Section 2.20 hereof, weekly hours of 21.66 hours result in a daily benefit of five hours for the purpose of payment of benefits under this Plan.  Accordingly, that number (5) shall be multiplied by the number of days of paid vacation (5) and the result shall be multiplied by the hourly rate of pay in effect on the date of eligibility, as described in Section 2.03 hereof in order to determine the amount of vacation pay to which such Employee is entitled.  In this example, the resulting amount of vacation pay would be calculated by multiplying 25 (the daily benefit of hours times the number of days of paid vacation) by the appropriate hourly rate of pay.

In view of administrative problems that may be encountered in making benefit calculations for first time applicants, and, notwithstanding the procedures set forth in this Section, the Trustees may adopt separate procedures for the purpose of calculating the benefit for a participant making his or her first application to the Fund for such benefit.  In no event, however, shall such calculation result in a benefit to the participant which is less than the benefit that would be reached through the calculation method specified in this Section.

(c) The hourly rate of pay to be applied to an Employee's paid vacation benefit shall be the rate of pay in effect on the date such Employee becomes eligible for the vacation benefit in question, regardless of the actual date of payment.  For example, if the hourly rate of pay in effect on the day of eligibility is $6.00 per hour, such rate shall be used to calculate the amount of vacation pay -- even if the rate is different on the actual date of payment.

2.03. ELIGIBILITY  FOR VACATION BENEFITS.

(a)  An Employee shall become eligible for vacation benefits on the Anniversary Date of his or her employment with an “Employer” (as that term is defined at Section 1.08 hereof) following a Year of Service with that Employer.

(b) Except as set forth in sub-section (c) hereof, no Employee shall be entitled to a pro rata or partial vacation benefit if his or her employment is terminated prior to the completion of any Year of Service.

(c) An Employee who has completed at least one year of service with an Employer or predecessor contractor shall be entitled, after that year, to a pro rata or partial vacation benefit if his or her employment with such Employer is terminated prior to the completion of any Year of Service, and he or she does not continue employment with a successor contractor or contractors, or the same business entity.  For purposes of this Subsection (c) the term “predecessor contractor” shall refer to a business entity which immediately preceded the Employer at the same Installation pursuant to a service contract requiring the providing of similar services as those provided by the Employer.  For purposes of this Subsection (c) the term “successor contractor or contractors” shall refer to business entities which succeed the Employer at the same Installation pursuant to a service contract requiring similar services as those provided by the Employer, and the term “same business entity” shall refer to a business entity which continues performing at the same Installation pursuant to a Collective Bargaining Agreement which no longer requires such business entity to contribute to the Annual Benefit Fund on behalf of its Employees at said Installation.

Accordingly, no pro rata or partial vacation benefit shall be payable by the Fund to any Employee who continues employment at the same Installation with a business entity which is not obligated to contribute to the Annual Benefit Fund pursuant to a Collective Bargaining Agreement.

(d) If an Employee terminates employment with an Employer after having accumulated at least one year of service and obtains employment with another Employer within one year from the date of termination of such employment, such Employee shall maintain the same eligibility for vacation benefits as he or she had with the prior Employer.

2.04. PAYMENT OF VACATION BENEFITS.

Payments of vacation benefits to eligible Employees shall be made by the Fund on the Anniversary Date following the receipt of the application for such benefits described in Section 2.20, provided that the application is received by the Fund office no less than thirty (30) days prior to the Anniversary date in question. In the event an application for vacation benefits is received less than thirty (30) days prior to the next Anniversary Date, payment of such benefits shall be made within thirty (30) days from the date the application is received.

In no event shall weekly vacation benefits exceed forty (40) hours per week.

2.05. SAVINGS CLAUSE.

(a) If, on the effective date of this Plan, the vacation benefits under the terms of an existing Collective Bargaining Agreement covering an Installation are greater than the vacation benefits provided in this Plan, eligible Employees employed at such Installation under the terms of a Collective Bargaining Agreement on and after the effective date of this Plan shall receive the higher vacation benefit from the Fund.

(b) If, on the effective date of this Plan, the cumulative holiday and sick leave benefits under the terms of an existing Collective Bargaining Agreement at an Installation are greater than the cumulative holiday and sick leave benefits provided in this Plan, eligible Employees employed at such Installation under the terms of a Collective Bargaining Agreement on and after the effective date of this Plan shall receive the same number of cumulative days of holiday and sick leave benefits specified in the Collective Bargaining Agreement which was in effect at the Installation in question on the effective date of this Plan.

2.06. HOLIDAY BENEFITS.

(a) Each Employee who has satisfied the eligibility requirements set forth in Section 2.07 hereof, shall be entitled to receive holiday pay for one (1) holiday per calendar month.

(b) The benefit which an Employee is entitled to receive for each paid holiday shall be calculated as follows:

  1. Determining the total number of benefit hours paid by the Fund plus the total hours for which contributions have been made for such employee during the three month period prior to the month for which the benefit is being paid
  2. Dividing such total hours by 12;
  3. Applying the resulting weekly hours to the table set out at Section 2.20 hereof in order to determine the daily benefit hours for such holiday pay;
  4. Multiplying the resulting daily benefit hours by the hourly rate of pay in effect on the last day of the month in question.

For example, if an Employee has had 400 hours of contributions made on his or her behalf to the Fund by his or her Employer and 55 hours of benefits paid to him or her by the Fund during the three month period in question, the resulting total number (455) shall be divided by 12 to get a result of 37.92 hours.  This results in a daily benefit of 8 hours for the purpose of payment of benefits under this Plan.  The rate of pay for the holiday in question is then determined by multiplying 8 times the appropriate hourly rate of pay.

In view of administrative problems that may be encountered in making benefit calculations for participants receiving holiday benefits for the first three months of their eligibility, and notwithstanding the procedures set forth in this Section, the Trustees may adopt separate procedures for the purpose of calculating the holiday benefit for a participant receiving his or her first three holiday benefit payments.  In no event, however, shall such calculations result in a benefit to the participant which is less than the benefit that would be reached through the calculation method specified in this Section.

(c) The hourly rate of pay to be applied to a paid holiday shall be the rate in effect on the last day of the month in question, regardless of the actual date of payment.

2.07. ELIGIBILITY FOR HOLIDAY BENEFITS.

(a) All Employees employed by an Employer on the date such Employer becomes a party to a Collective Bargaining Agreement, which provides for the payment of holiday benefits by the Annual Benefit Fund, shall be eligible to receive the holiday benefits specified in Section 2.06 hereof.

(b) Employees commencing employment with an Employer after the effective date of a Collective Bargaining Agreement which provides for the payment of holiday benefits by the Annual Benefit Fund, shall be eligible for such holiday benefits upon the completion of ninety (90) days of service with such Employer.

(c) Once an Employee is eligible for holiday benefits, his or her right to receive holiday pay for a particular month shall accrue on the last date of such month.

2.08. PAYMENT OF HOLIDAY BENEFITS.

Each Employee shall receive pay for each holiday for which he or she is eligible on the 45th day following the end of the month for which the holiday benefit is being paid.  The filing of an application shall be required for the initial payment of holiday benefits.  Upon completion of the first ninety (90) days of employment, each eligible Employee shall receive pay for three (3) holidays, provided such application has been received.  Thereafter, the filing of an application shall not be required for payment of holiday benefits.  In no event shall daily holiday benefits exceed eight (8) hours per day.

2.09. SICK LEAVE.

(a) Each Employee who has satisfied the eligibility requirements set forth in Section 2.10 hereof shall accrue sick leave at the rate of .6667 days for each month of continuous service with an Employer.

(b) The benefit which an employee is entitled to receive for each day of accrued sick leave shall be calculated as follows:

  1. Determining the total number of benefit hours paid by the Fund plus the total hours for which contributions have been made for such employee during the calendar quarter immediately preceding the date of the application or, when necessary, the calendar quarter during which the application is filed.
  2. Dividing such total hours by 12;
  3. Applying the resulting weekly hours to the table set out at Section 2.20 hereof in order to determine the daily benefit hours for such sick leave pay;
  4. Multiplying the resulting daily benefit hours by the hourly rate of pay in effect on the last day of the month in question.

In view of administrative problems that may be encountered in making benefit calculations for first time applicants, and, notwithstanding the procedures set forth in this Section, the Trustees may adopt separate procedures for the purpose of calculating the benefit for a Participant making his or her first application to the Fund for such benefit.  In no event, however, shall such calculation result in a benefit to the Participant which is less than the benefit that would be reached through the calculation method specified in this Section.

(c) The hourly rate of pay to be applied to a day of accrued sick leave shall be the rate in effect on the last day of the month in question, regardless of the actual date of payment.

(d) In no event shall a sick leave benefit exceed eight (8) hours per day. The total amount of sick leave a year is eight (8) days. 

2.10. ELIGIBILITY FOR SICK LEAVE BENEFITS.

(a) All Employees employed by an Employer on the date such an Employer becomes party to a Collective Bargaining Agreement, which provides for the payment of sick leave benefits by the Annual Benefit Fund, shall be eligible to receive the sick leave benefits described in Section 2.09  hereof.

(b) Employees commencing employment with an Employer after the effective date of a Collective Bargaining Agreement which provides for the payment of sick leave benefits by the Annual Benefit Fund, shall be eligible for sick leave benefits upon the completion of ninety (90) days of service with such Employer.

(c) Once an Employee is eligible for sick leave benefits, his or her right to receive sick leave pay for a particular month shall accrue on the last date of such month.

2.11. PAYMENT OF SICK LEAVE BENEFITS.

Active Employees need not apply for all days of Sick Leave for which they are eligible.  Instead, each eligible Employee shall receive pay for any days of accrued Sick Leave within thirty (30) days following receipt by the Fund Office of application for such benefits.  Such application shall specify the number of days of Sick Leave for which such Employee is applying.

2.12. TRAINING PAY.

(a) All Employees shall be entitled to receive such hours of pay per contract year as specified in the applicable Collective Bargaining Agreement for bona-fide training provided to such Employees by an Employer.  The decision as to whether to provide such training shall be at the sole discretion of the Employer.

(b) The rate of pay for such hours of training shall be the hourly rate of pay in effect on the date such training takes place, regardless of the actual date of payment.

2.13. PAYMENT OF TRAINING PAY.

Each Employee shall receive pay for hours of training described in Section 2.12 hereof following the receipt of the application for such benefits described in Section 3.01 hereof. 

2.14. BEREAVEMENT LEAVE BENEFIT.

(a) Each eligible Employee shall be entitled to receive up to three (3) days Bereavement Leave benefit in the event of the death of a spouse, parent, child or sibling.  The term "parent" and "child" includes those relationships such as a step-parent or step-child or grandparent, when appropriate, where the parties stand "in loco parentis" (in the position of parent and child).

(b) All Employees employed by an Employer on the date such Employer becomes party to a Collective Bargaining Agreement, shall be eligible to receive the Bereavement Leave benefit described in this Section 2.14.

(c) Employees commencing employment with an Employer after the effective date of a Collective Bargaining Agreement shall be eligible for payment of Bereavement Leave benefits upon the completion of ninety (90) days of service with such Employer.

 

(d) The benefit which an Employee is entitled to receive for each day of accrued Bereavement Leave shall be calculated in accordance with the formula and language dealing with the calculation of the sick leave benefit set forth at Section 2.09(b) of this Plan.

(e) The hourly rate of pay to be applied to a day of Bereavement Leave benefit shall be the rate in effect on the last day of the month during which the Bereavement occurred, regardless of the actual date of payment.

2.15. PAYMENT OF BEREAVEMENT LEAVE BENEFIT.

Each eligible Employee shall receive pay for the Bereavement Leave Benefit described in Section 2.14 hereof (up to a maximum of three (3) days per qualified bereavement) following the receipt of the application for such benefit described in Section 3.01 of this Plan.   In no event shall a daily Bereavement Leave Benefit exceed eight (8) hours per day.

2.16. JURY DUTY BENEFIT.

(a) All eligible Employees shall be entitled to receive up to five (5) days of Jury Duty benefit pay per calendar year for service as a juror in any court of record.

(b) All Employees employed by an Employer who becomes party to a Collective Bargaining Agreement, shall be eligible to receive the Jury Duty benefit described in this Section 2.16.

(c) Employees commencing employment with an Employer after the effective date of a Collective Bargaining Agreement shall be eligible for payment of Jury Duty benefits upon the completion of ninety (90) days of service with such Employer.

(d) The benefit which an Employee is entitled to receive for each day of paid Jury Duty benefit shall be calculated in accordance with the formula and language dealing with the calculation of the sick leave benefit set forth at Section 2.09(b) of this Plan, less any sum received by the Employee from the court in question in recompense for service as a juror.

(e) The hourly rate of pay to be applied to the day of paid Jury Duty benefit shall be the rate in effect on the last day of the month during which Jury Duty was served, regardless of the actual date of payment.

2.17. PAYMENT OF JURY DUTY BENEFIT.

Each eligible Employee shall receive pay for the Jury Duty Benefit described in Section 2.16  hereof (up to a maximum of five (5) days per year) following the receipt of the application for such benefits described in Section 3.01 of this Plan.  In no event shall a daily Jury Duty Benefit exceed eight (8) hours per day, less any sum received by the Employee from the court in question in recompense for service as a juror.

2.18. EDUCATIONAL BENEFIT.

(a) The Trustees shall have full authority and power, in their absolute discretion, to determine annually, based on the financial position of the Fund, whether to award any or all of the Educational Benefits specified in this Section 2.18.

(b) In the event the Trustees determine to pay an Educational Benefit in any calendar year, the following scholarships or awards may be provided for the payment of tuition, room and board and books:

(i) Five 4-year scholarships for undergraduate or graduate study at a college or university in amounts up to $10,000.00 in each of the four years;

(ii) Two 2-year scholarships for study at a community or junior college in amounts up to $5,000.00 in each of the two years;

(iii) Eight awards for up to two years of study at a vocational/technical school or institute in amounts up to $5,000.00 per year of study.

Based on the financial position of the Fund and the number of applications received, the Trustees shall have full authority and power, in their absolute discretion, to re-allocate the number and type of scholarships or awards issued, as well as the amount paid for each such scholarship or award.

(c) Except as specified at Paragraph (f) hereof, for purposes of this Educational Benefit, an eligible Employee is one who is:

(i) an active Employee of an Employer at the time his or her application for an Educational Benefit is received by the Fund; and

(ii) has been on the payroll of an Employer for at least ninety (90) days immediately prior to the receipt of such application by the Fund; and

(iii) has averaged at least 20 hours of employment per week during said 90 day period.

(d) In order to qualify for an Educational Benefit under this Plan, a candidate must be either an eligible Employee, as specified in paragraph(c)hereof, or a spouse or dependent child of such an Eligible Employee.

The term “spouse” as used herein, shall not include a person who is either divorced from the Employee, legally separated from the Employee or has not resided with the Employee for one year or more prior to the date of application for any Educational Benefit specified herein.

The term “child”, as used herein, shall mean a son, daughter, step-son, step-daughter or legally adopted child of an Eligible Employee.

The term “dependent child”, as used herein, shall mean:

(i) an unmarried child from date of birth to 19 years, provided such child either resides with the Employee or receives substantial support from such Employee; or

(ii) an unmarried child between the ages of 19 and 25 years, provided he or she is solely dependent upon the Employee for support and is regularly attending an accredited college or university, or regularly attending an accredited school.

(e) Applications for an Educational Benefit should be filed no later than February 1 in order for an applicant to be considered for a scholarship benefit in the current calendar year.  Application forms may be obtained from the Fund office on written request or through the Fund’s website (WWW.ITPEBENEFITS.ORG).

(f) Trustees and their spouses and children shall not be eligible for this benefit.

2.18 A. TERMINATION OF EDUCATIONAL BENEFIT PROGRAM.

(a)  Effective October 1, 2014, the ITPEU Annual Benefit Plan Educational Benefit Program shall be terminated, subject to subparagraphs (b)

 (b)  All existing Educational Benefits which have been awarded prior to October 1, 2014, and are not yet  fully paid, will be honored and paid by the Fund so long as the recipients of such benefits remain otherwise eligible therefor.


2.19. SPECIAL BENEFIT.

(a) The Trustees shall have full authority and power, in their absolute discretion, to determine annually, based on the financial position of the Fund, whether to pay a Special Benefit to eligible Employees.

(b) In the event the Trustees determine to pay a Special Benefit in any calendar year, all Employees eligible to receive a holiday or sick leave benefit as of September 1 of that calendar year shall be eligible to receive such Special Benefit.

(c) The amount of any Special Benefit paid in any calendar year shall be calculated by making reference to the contributions made on behalf of any eligible Employee during the months of June, July and August of said calendar year, and utilizing the formula for calculating holiday benefits specified in Section 2.06 hereof.

(d) In no event shall any Special Benefit exceed a benefit equal to two (2) days holiday benefit.

2.20. DAILY BENEFIT TABLE.

The table set forth below shall be utilized to make the necessary calculation to determine the daily benefit hours to be utilized in calculating vacation, holiday, sick leave, bereavement and jury duty benefits under the Standard Benefit Package.

Average Weekly DailyBenefit Hours

Hours To Be Paid

35 hours to 40.00 hours 8 Hours
30 hours to 34.99 hours 7 hours
25 hours to 29.99 hours 6 hours
20 hours to 24.99 hours 5 hours
15 hours to 19.99 hours 4 hours
10 hours to 14.99 hours 3 hours
5 hours to 9.99 hours 2 hours
1 hour to 4.99 hours 1 hour

2.21. PAYROLL AND/OR WITHHOLDING TAXES.

All payroll and/or withholding taxes and/or other deductions required by applicable law, shall be deducted from any payments made pursuant to this Section and shall be transmitted by the Trustees to the appropriate government agency, together with necessary reporting forms or other information.  In determining the amount of any tax entailing personal exemptions, the Trustees or their duly designated representative shall be entitled to rely on the official form filed by an employee with his or her employer for purpose of income tax withholding on regular wages.

2.22. COMBINING PAYMENTS.

If an Employee is entitled to receive payment of more than one benefit the Trustees may, in their sole discretion, combine such benefits into one (1) payment, provided sufficient information is given the Employee with the payment to enable him or her to adequately identify the benefits covered by such payment.

2.23. DEATH OF EMPLOYEE.

In the event an Employee dies after becoming eligible for any benefit provided by this Plan and before such benefit is paid or forfeited pursuant to Section 3.07 hereof, payment of such benefit shall be made to the deceased Employee's surviving spouse, or if none, to his or her surviving children, in equal shares, provided such spouse or children apply for such benefits within 13 months of the last contribution made to the Fund on behalf of such Employee. If no such application is submitted by such spouse or children within such 13 month period, such benefits shall be deemed forfeited.

2.24. SPECIAL ELIGIBILITY RULES FOR SEASONAL EMPLOYMENT.

(a) An Employee whose employment is limited to “Seasonal Employment” and who has completed at least thirty days of such Seasonal Employment during a calendar year shall be eligible for pro rata benefits from the Fund, contingent upon, and to the extent that contributions have been received from the Employer on behalf of such Employee.

(b) Such pro rata benefits shall be provided for thirty day segments of Seasonal Employment and no pro rata benefits shall be paid for any segment of Seasonal Employment less than thirty days.

(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Plan to the contrary, no payment of pro rata benefits pursuant to this Section 2.24 shall be paid without the receipt by the Fund of an appropriate application for such benefits.  Such applications must be submitted no earlier than September 15th of the calendar year in which the Seasonal Employment was worked.

(d) These special eligibility rules shall apply only to benefits based on Seasonal Employment.  If an Employee has both Seasonal and regular employment during a calendar year, he or she may not combine such employment for purposes of obtaining pro rata benefits under these Special Rules.  However, he or she may elect to combine such employment toward eligibility for the regular benefits provided by this Plan for Non-Seasonal Employment.

SECTION 3.  GENERAL PROVISIONS

3.01. CONDITION TO PAYMENT OF BENEFITS.

(a) As a condition to payment of any benefit, which requires an application, such application must be made in writing in a form and manner prescribed by the Trustees.  With the exception of the Vacation Benefit, no application may be accepted if it is received by the Fund Office prior to the date on which the Employee becomes eligible for the benefit in question.

(b) No benefits shall be paid to an Employee for any period of time during which his or her Employer is more than two months delinquent in remitting its contributions to the Fund.

3.02. FURNISHING INFORMATION.

Every Employee or Beneficiary shall furnish, at the request of the Trustees, any information or proof reasonably required for the administration of the Plan or for the determination of any matter that the Trustees may legitimately have before them.  Failure to furnish such information or proof promptly and in good faith shall be sufficient reason for the denial of benefits to such Employee or Beneficiary.  The falsity of any statement material to an application or the furnishing of fraudulent information or proof shall be sufficient reason for the denial, suspension or discontinuance of benefits under this Plan which are in fact non-forfeitable and in any such case, the Trustees shall have the right to recover any benefit payments made in reliance thereon.

3.03. CONSTRUCTION OF PLAN DOCUMENTS AND COVERAGE AND ELIGIBILITY FOR BENEFITS.

The Trustees shall have full authority and power, in their absolute discretion to determine the following matters and all questions, policies and procedures related thereto:

(a) the construction of the provision of all Plan documents, including, but not limited to, this ITPEU Annual Benefit Plan, the Agreement and Declaration of Trust and all resolutions and amendments adopted pursuant to those documents, including all terms used within such documents;

(b) the nature and amount of all benefits to be provided under the Plan;

(c) eligibility to participate in the Plan; and

(d) eligibility to receive benefits from the Plan.

All decisions of the Trustees, or such Committees of Trustees or representatives of the Trustees as shall be designated by the full Board of Trustees, on any question regarding the construction of any Plan document, or any question regarding the nature and amount of benefits, eligibility to participate in the Plan and eligibility to receive benefits shall be final and binding on all participants, beneficiaries and any other interested parties.

3.04. DISABILITY.

In the event it is determined to the satisfaction of the Trustees that an Employee or Beneficiary is unable to care for his or her affairs because of mental or physical incapacity, any payment due may be applied, in the discretion of the Trustees, to the maintenance and support of such Employee or Beneficiary or to such person as the Trustees, in their sole discretion, find to be an object of the natural bounty of the Employee or Beneficiary in the manner decided by the Trustees, unless, prior to such payment, claim shall have been made for such payment by a legally-appointed guardian, committee, or other legal representative appropriate to receive such payments on behalf of the Employee or Beneficiary.  Any such payment shall completely discharge the Trustees' liability with respect to such benefit.

3.05. IMPAIRMENT OF INTEREST.

No Employee, Beneficiary or other person entitled to any benefits from this Plan shall have the right to assign, alienate, transfer, encumber, pledge, mortgage, hypothecate, anticipate, or impair in any manner his or her legal or beneficial interest, or any interest in assets of the Trust, or benefits of this Plan, provided, however, that the Trustees shall honor and comply with duly executed and witnessed voluntary assignments from Employees relating to the payment of a portion of said Employee’s vacation benefit to the ITPEU Political Action Committee.  Such assignments shall provide that they may be revoked at any time by the Employee in question.  Neither the Trust nor any of the assets thereof, shall be liable for the debts of any Employee or Beneficiary entitled to any benefits under this Plan, nor be subject to attachment or execution or process in any court or action or proceeding, provided, however, that Trustees shall honor and comply with the terms of a "Qualified Domestic Relations Order" as defined in Section 1.13 of this Plan, child support orders issued by courts of competent jurisdiction and federal and state tax levies.

3.06. RIGHT OF APPEAL.

An Employee whose application for benefits under this Plan has been denied, in whole or in part, is to be provided with adequate notice in writing setting forth the specific reasons for such denial, and shall have the right to appeal the decision, by written request filed with the Trustees within 180 days after receipt of such notice.  The appeal shall be considered by a person or committee designated by the Trustees.  Its decision shall be communicated to the claimant within 180 days after receipt of all pertinent evidence.

3.07. TIME LIMIT FOR APPLICATIONS FOR BENEFITS.

(a) Rules Regarding All Benefits Accrued Prior to November 1, 2001.  There shall be no time limit for active Employees to apply for any benefits for which they are eligible.  However, inactive Employees must apply for any benefit for which they are eligible within sixty (60) months from the date of their termination from employment.  If an inactive Employee fails to apply for benefits within that sixty (60) month period, his or her right to the benefit or benefits in question shall be forfeited, provided the Fund, after the exercise of due diligence has been unable to locate such Employee.  (The term “due diligence” shall include the use of a locator service, which incorporates the use of the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration locator services, to locate the missing Employee.) Such forfeitures shall be applied to payment of administrative expenses of the Fund.  For purposes of this Section 3.07(a) the term “inactive Employee” shall refer to any Employee whose employment pursuant to the terms of a “Collective Bargaining Agreement” (as defined in Section 1.05 hereof) has been terminated.

(b) Rules With Respect To All Benefits Accrued On Or After November 1, 2001. There shall be no time limit for active Employees to apply for any benefit for which they are eligible.  However, if an inactive Employee has not filed an application for all benefits for which he or she is eligible within13 months of the last contribution made to the Fund on his or her behalf by an Employer, the Fund shall transmit an application for payment of such benefits to such Employee at his or her last known address.  The letter transmitting such application shall inform the Employee that if he or she does not return a completed application within 60 days of the date of the transmittal letter, his or her right to the benefits in question shall be subject to forfeiture upon the completion of the Fund’s exercise of ‘due diligence’ in attempting to locate him or her.

(i) If such application is returned to the Fund due to the address no longer being correct, the Fund shall exercise ‘due diligence’ as defined in Section 3.07(a) hereof, in attempting to locate such Employee.  If the Fund after the exercise of such ‘due diligence’ is unable to locate such Employee, his or her right to the benefit or benefits in question shall be forfeited.

(ii) If such application is not returned to the Fund due to such address no longer being correct, but the completed application is not returned to the Fund within 60 days from the date of the transmittal letter, the Fund shall exercise ‘due diligence’ as defined at Section 3.07(a) hereof, in attempting to locate such Employee.  If the Fund after the exercise of ‘due diligence’ is unable to locate such Employee, or if the Fund, in the exercise of ‘due diligence’ determines that the address to which the application was sent is correct, and more than 60 days have elapsed since the date of the transmittal letter and no completed application has been received by the Fund office, the right of such Employee to the benefit or benefits in question shall be forfeited.

Such forfeitures shall be applied to payment of administrative expenses of the Fund.  For purposes of this Section 3.07 the term ‘inactive Employee’ shall refer to any Employee whose employment pursuant to the terms of a ‘collective bargaining agreement’ (as defined in Section 1.05 hereof) has been terminated.”

3.08. NON-REVERSION.

In no event shall any of the corpus or assets of the Fund revert to the Employers or be subject to any claims of any kind or nature by the Employers, except for the return of an erroneous contribution within the time limits prescribed by law.

SECTION 4. AMENDMENT AND TERMINATION

4.01. AMENDMENT.

The Trustees may amend or modify the Plan at any time in accordance with the Agreement and Declaration of Trust, except that no amendment or modification may curtail any benefits, or reduce any benefits which have been approved for payment prior to amendment, so long as funds are available for payment of such benefits.

4.02. TERMINATION.

(a) In the event of a complete termination of the Plan, the assets then remaining, after providing for payment of any accumulated benefits and for any remaining administrative expenses, shall be distributed equally among the Employees then covered by an existing Collective Bargaining Agreement as defined at Section 1.05 hereof.  Only those Employees with at least sixty (60) days of service under such a Collective Bargaining Agreement shall be eligible to participate in this distribution.

(b) In the event an Employee cannot be located in the exercise of due diligence and no claim is made by him or her for their share of this distribution, such Employee's portion of such distribution shall be forfeited and shall be reallocated on a uniform basis among Employees to whom payments have been or can be made.

(c) In the event of such a termination, no part of the corpus or assets of the Fund shall revert to the Employers or the Union.