Senate’s priority pension bill passes committee unanimously

Senate Bill 2, a bill to bring more transparency and oversight to the state’s retirement systems, passed the Senate State and Local Government committee Wednesday with a 10-0.

The legislation, sponsored by Public Pension Oversight Board co-chair Sen. Joe Bowen, seeks to bring more accountability to the system by making changes to board structures including gubernatorial appointments, and requiring the systems to follow KRS Chapter 45A, the model procurement code.

Other changes to the three retirement systems, Kentucky Retirement System (KRS), Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System (KTRS) and the Judicial Retirement System, such as:

  • Disclosure of fees and contracts
  • Prohibiting the use of placement agents by the systems
  • Confirmation of appointments and/or contracts by the Senate
  • Uniform methods of reporting and disclosing investment fees

In his first State of the Commonwealth Budget Address Tuesday, Gov. Matt Bevin called for full audits of all the state’s pension plans which could yield some additional changes that need to be made.

However, Bowen said Wednesday it is critical for the legislature to be proactive in making the systems transparent and to provide oversight in order to begin to solve the problems faced by the state’s ailing pension plans.

The Kentucky Chamber of Commerce has long been concerned about the unfunded liability of the state’s retirement systems and has advocated for a number of changes to improve the systems as well as measures to bring transparency to the pension systems.

Now that SB2 has passed out of committee with unanimous consent, it now heads to the full Senate for a floor vote.

Categories: 2016 General Assembly, Pensions

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