After legislators left Frankfort with no solution to funding issues within the Kentucky Teachers Retirement System, House Republican Leader Jeff Hoover wrote a letter to Gov. Steve Beshear Monday calling for the formation of a task force to look into the system.
In recent years, KTRS has come to legislators expressing the need for more funding in order to shore up their retirement system. During the 2015 session, a proposal was put forward to bond $3.3 billion dollars to put into the system. A conference committee discussed the idea of bonding the money while also looking into the system to identify structural changes that needed to be made but no agreement was reached.
Many in the business community are skeptical of such a large amount of bonding, especially since there had not been a study vetting such a major initiative. In March 2014, the Kentucky Chamber called for a legislative study group to analyze KTRS through the use of outside experts in order to find solutions and strategies to the system’s funding woes. However, that was not accomplished and a comprehensive look at the system is still not available.
Hoover is now asking Beshear to form a bipartisan task force to begin a comprehensive review of the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System during the 2015 Interim Session.
“I urge you to take immediate steps to form a bipartisan task force of House and Senate members, and persons in the private sector with expertise in pension reform to begin a thorough review during the 2015 Interim Session so we can address needed reforms during the 2016 Regular Session,” Hoover wrote in the letter to Beshear.
In the letter, Hoover noted efforts by his caucus to study the system with legislation he has filed in the 2014 and 2015 sessions seeking a comprehensive view of KTRS.
Hoover said he believes the issues within the pension system must be addressed immediately for the sake of all current and retired teachers in the state.
“I stand ready, along with the members of my caucus, to not only assist in your efforts to establish a task force but to also serve on it as well. The issue of our teachers’ retirement is of great concern to all members of the House Republican Caucus, and I urge you to take action immediately,” Hoover wrote.
The full letter can be seen below: