Pension Plan Amendment


Frequently Asked Questions

These frequently asked questions (FAQs) are provided to assist you in understanding the changes from the Pension Plan amendment to integrate the Dalhousie University Staff Pension Plan with the additional benefits introduced under the Canada Pension Plan (CPP).

The plan amendment is effective January 1, 2024.

You can read the full Amendment to Integrate with Enhanced Portion of Canada Pension Plan (CPP) [PDF] and Notice of Plan Amendment [PDF].

What is changing?

The pension you earn after January 1, 2024, will be reduced a small amount for each year of service. Your pension contributions on every pay will also be decreasing as a result. 

Where can I find additional information about the changes?

Virtual information sessions will be offered in January for any members interested in learning more about these changes. A second email will be distributed shortly advising about registration for these sessions and the sessions will be available for registration on the Employee Learning calendar.

You can also visit and check out Quick Links, Pension Modules, and the updated documents under Getting Started. The amendment and FAQs will also be posted there.

Why was this amendment introduced?

This amendment was introduced in response to recent changes to the Canadian Pension Plan (CPP) program. Over the past few years, CPP benefits and contributions have increased and will continue to increase in the next two years. In the 2020-2022 collective bargaining process, all parties agreed in principle to integrate the pension plan with the enhanced portion of the CPP. The Pension Advisory Committee was then tasked to develop the actual process to do so. This amendment is the result of that process.

What does integration with the enhanced portion of CPP mean?

The pension formula has been adjusted to offset the enhanced portion of CPP, with the goal of achieving a similar level of combined benefits (from the CPP and the Dalhousie Plan) as would have been in place before the CPP changes. Essentially, after January 1, 2024, you will be receiving a little less from the Dalhousie Plan which is offset by receiving a little more from the CPP.

Who does this amendment impact?

This affects any Plan member who will be continuing to earn pensionable service after January 1, 2024, and for whom contributions are being remitted to the pension plan.

Who is not impacted by this amendment?

Any active plan member who is not accruing pensionable service past December 31, 2023, is not impacted. This includes anyone who has already attained 35 years of pensionable service and has stopped contributing to the plan.  In addition, retired, deferred, or terminated members of the Plan are not impacted.

How does this amendment affect my pension contributions?

Your required pension contributions will drop slightly on every pay. The Regular contribution remains the same, but the Supplementary contribution has been reduced. The Supplementary contribution is changing from a flat 2% of salary to a lower calculation of 1.11% of annual salary up to the Years Additional Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YAMPE) in the year, plus 2% of annual salary above the YAMPE.  Another way to look at this is that all members’ contributions will drop by 0.89% of annual salary up to the YAMPE (2.0% minus 1.11%).  

The following table provides examples of the estimated reduction in annual pension contributions in calendar year 2024, for individuals at various salary levels:


2024 Annual Salary                                                   Plan Annual Contributions         

$40,000                                                                                 $356

$60,000                                                                                 $534

Greater than $80,000                                                         $695

What is YMPE and YAMPE?

The Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE) and the Years Additional Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YAMPE) are terms used by the CPP. The amounts change each year. The YAMPE is a new amount being phased in by the CPP over the next two years. For purposes of the pension plan, the YAMPE in 2024 and previous years will be deemed to be 114% of the published YMPE. The YMPE in 2024 is $68,500 and the deemed YAMPE for pension purposes in 2024 will be $78,090.

How does this amendment affect the pension I earn every year?

The pension accrual formula has been reduced for service after January 1, 2024. For every future year of service, you will now earn (accrue) a slightly smaller pension. The new pension accrual formula for every year of pensionable service after January 1, 2024, is 1.8% of average earnings up to the average YAMPE for the same period as the earnings, and 2.0% of average earnings above the average YAMPE.

Does the amendment affect my pensionable service for years before 2024?

No. There is no change to the pension formula for service you accrue up to December 31, 2023. The original pension accrual formula will continue to apply to your service up to that date.

When you retire or leave the pension plan, your total pension will be the sum of both the amount earned up to December 31, 2023, under the original formula, and any amounts earned after January 1, 2024, under the new formula.

For Service up to December 31, 2023             


For Service from January 1, 2024



[2% x Best Average Earnings] x Pensionable Service up to December 31, 2023  + [1.8% x Best Average Earnings up to Avg YAMPE]+ [2% x Best Average Earnings above the Avg YAMPE] x Pensionable Service from January 1, 2024 =

Total Earned Pension



Who do I contact with questions?

Please contact the Retirement Services team if you have additional questions. Email or call 902-494-1782.