The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. on Thursday turned over about 62,000 pages of emails and documents, 20 months after a federal judge in Detroit first ordered it to submit the information, Delphi salaried retirees said Monday.
The pension insurer said it will produce a similar-sized second batch of documents by end of June, retirees said in a news release.
The materials concern the PBGC's 2009 termination of the pension plan of more than 20,000 current and future salaried Delphi retirees during the auto bailout, resulting in the reduction of earned pensions by as much as 70 percent.
The number includes about 1,500 retirees from Warren-area Delphi Packard operations.
After already reviewing more than 100,000 pages of discovery from non-governmental parties, the retirees said they believe they can prove the PBGC illegally terminated the Delphi salaried retiree pension plan in 2009 under pressure from President Barack Obama's Auto Task Force, which reported to the U.S. Treasury Department.
"Given the president's statement on his first day in office that "transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency, why did we have to pry this information out of a government agency led by an Obama appointee?" Dennis Black, chairman of the Delphi Salaried Retirees Association, said in a statement.
Black said the retiree group's legal bills are several million dollars to get to this point.
"Citizens shouldn't have to hire lawyers to fight against taxpayer-paid lawyers just to find out how and why onerous government policy decisions were made," he said.
Salaried retirees noted union-represented Delphi retirees had their pensions "topped up," or made whole, with tax dollars as part of Obama's Auto Task Force's $50 billion rescue of GM in the company's 2009 bankruptcy reorganization.
"Some say this was done because GM was contractually obligated to honor its 1999 labor agreements with labor unions," Charles Cunningham, chairman of retirees' legal committee, said. "But GM's bankruptcy court found in 2009 that the 'new' GM was not obligated to honor any of 'old' GM's contracts."
He said salaried retirees are "glad that the union workers received this 'top up' and have been spared the harm and suffering the salaried workers have had to endure. All we want is equal treatment with those people, most of whom we worked side-by-side during our careers."
Troy-based Delphi Corp., while in bankruptcy in 2009, terminated the pension plans of 70,000 people and left a $7.2 billion shortfall, second only to United Airlines' $7.4 billion deficit in PBGC history.
The pension insurer got roughly $650 million from Delphi, leaving it with a shortfall of about $5.3 billion.