Legislative Update: House passes workforce measure, Senate passes pension bill

On Tuesday, HCR 97, establishing a task force to study issues relating to workforce development issues, passed the Kentucky House with a vote of a 95-0.

The Kentucky Workforce Development Task Force, which is created by the resolution, will be made up of the Secretary of the Cabinet for Education and Workforce Development, the Secretary of the Labor Cabinet, the Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Education, the Secretary of the Cabinet for Economic Development, the President of the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education, the President of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, the Executive Director of the Kentucky Workforce Innovation Board, the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, the Kentucky Association of Manufacturers, the Associated General Contractors of Kentucky,  the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association, the Kentucky State Building and Construction Trades, and by amendment, the Kentucky Home Builders Association.

The group will work on recommendations that deal with funding workforce education and how to best realign the education system to help ensure the state meets present and future workforce demands. The task force will explore how to utilize certain programs like apprenticeships and will also provide recommendations on retraining the state’s aging workforce.

The resolution calls for a final report to be submitted to the Legislative Research Commission by December 1, 2016.

The Senate has a similar resolution, SCR 75, sponsored by Senate Pro Tem David Givens.  This resolution establishes a legislative task force and is waiting to be heard in committee.

In the Senate, Senate Bill 73, legislation to fix the practice of super-sized legislative pensions, passed through the Senate Tuesday with a vote of 37-0.

The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Chris McDaniel passed through the committee with unanimous consent for the fourth year in a row last week.

McDaniel says the bill is aimed at giving legislators a one-time opt-out to make their pension based solely on their legislative salary and not receive a massive bump if they take a higher paying job elsewhere in state government. McDaniel said SB73 would save the state more than $6 million over 20 years.

The legislation now heads to the House.

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