Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

Local News

July 24, 2012

Pension reform still troublesome

FRANKFORT — If it was easy, it would’ve already been done.

That might sum up the views of the legislative Task Force on pension reform after its second meeting and a second presentation by the PEW Center for the States.

David Draine, senior researcher for PEW, told the task force Tuesday that there are a limited number of ways the state can reduce its unfunded liability for its state pension funds: increase employee contributions; reduce or eliminate cost of living increases or COLAs; change how future benefits are earned by current employees; or a combination of all three.

Most of the lawmakers on the task force were interested in what changes are legally allowed under the state’s so-called “inviolable contract” which guarantees benefits to those already in the system. And if the state adopts a system of defined contributions by employees, like a 401(K) plan, rather than its current defined benefits plan, would the transition costs be prohibitive.

Drain said the latter problem isn’t insurmountable and shouldn’t deter lawmakers from making changes to the system. And he said the courts would have to decide the former question — as they have in other states, although those court decisions differ and have no legally binding effect on Kentucky or other states.

But the state can change benefits for future employees and the contract does not prohibit lawmakers from making changes to the COLA or health benefits. Some states, he said, have offered employees choices, among them a reduction in benefits or a reduction in workforce.

Kentucky operates multiple retirement systems: for state employees, county and city employees, teachers and the Kentucky State Police. The task force, which is to recommend changes by Dec. 7 for potential action by the 2013 General Assembly, will not address the teachers’ retirement system.

For the full story, read Wednesday's print or e-Edition of the Glasgow Daily Times.

 

1
Text Only
Local News
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Facebook
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Seasonal Content
Video