Pension clean-up bills pass through House committee

The House State Government Committee passed three bills Thursday seeking to clean-up issues within the state’s retirement systems.

House Bill 238, sponsored by Rep. Brent Yonts, passed the committee unanimously. The legislation requires new methods and procedures for the state’s retirement systems to report changes to actuarial analysis and other areas.

Yonts explained to the committee that the bill has no actuarial impact on the Kentucky’s retirement systems and only could increase some administrative costs.

The legislation would require the Public Pension Oversight Board to hire their own actuary to do an actuarial audit of the state-administered retirement systems at least every 10 years and review the retirement system’s budget requests every two years.

The systems currently have their own actuaries who report to the executive branch and others about budget requests. Yonts said having an actuary report to the Public Pension Oversight Board and the State Government Committees of each chamber will help the legislature adequately fund the pension systems.

House Bill 238 calls for the new actuary to be paid for by the pension systems. The bill also makes some changes to the way the systems report to the legislature. House Bill 238 now moves to the House floor for a vote.

A bill to allow a mayor or member of a city legislative body to continue in that position if they retire from another position and draw a pension through the Kentucky Retirement System (KRS) passed the committee unanimously as well.

House Bill 281, sponsored by Bowling Green representatives Jody Richards and Jim DeCesare, was crafted because a member of the Bowling Green City Commission is looking to retire from Western Kentucky University and draw her pension from KRS but has faced complications under the current laws.

Richards and DeCesare explained that the commission member currently could not draw her pension from KRS after retiring from WKU without resigning from the commission and running again after three months have passed because the commission is a member of the County Employees Retirement System, a plan within KRS. DeCesare stated that the bill says individuals in this situation will not be participating in both plans.

The Bowling Green legislators said the bill is a clean-up measure and the Kentucky Retirement System said the bill will have no actuarial impact on the system.

House Bill 153, a bill to clear up an issue with the Kentucky Retirement System and how it deals with volunteer firefighters, also passed the committee unanimously.

Bill sponsor Jerry Miller said the bill is a simple clean-up that can’t be fixed without legislation but will have no actuarial impact on the system.

Categories: 2016 General Assembly, Pensions

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