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Alpha Natural Resources Objection Filed

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According to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court docket, The United Mine Workers of America 1974 Pension Plan and Trust, The United Mine Workers of America 1993 Benefit Plan, The United Mine Workers of America 2012 Retiree Bonus Account Plan, The United Mine Workers of America Cash Deferred Savings Plan of 1988, The United Mine Workers of America Combined Benefit Fund and The United Mine Workers of America 1992 Benefit Plan filed an objection to Alpha Natural Resources’ motion to (i) reject certain collective bargaining agreements and (ii) modify certain retiree benefit obligations.

The objection explains, “Obligations arising under the Coal Act are not ‘retiree benefits’ under Section 1114(a); those obligations are set by statute and cannot be modified through negotiation; even if they could be negotiated, the Debtors failed entirely to make a proposal to the authorized representative of the beneficiaries of the Coal Act Funds; and eliminating those obligations cannot be ‘necessary to permit the reorganization’ of the Debtors. The Debtors’ motion under Section 1114 is very different from their sale motions under Section 363: this motion deals only with whether the Debtors have obligations under the Coal Act, not whether the purchasers of the Debtors’ assets will have obligations under the Coal Act; relief under the Section 1114 motion, therefore, is in no way a prerequisite to the asset sales.”

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