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October 31, 2017


 

WHAT:  A non-partisan 'Fund Our Pensions Rally' is expected to attract more than 500 state employees, public educators, retirees and others.

WHEN:  5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017.

WHERE:  Steps of the State Capitol in Frankfort, rain or shine.

WHO:  United We Stand―Kentucky Government Employees, a group representing more than 10,000 state employees and retirees, is hosting the event. Groups supporting the rally include:

The Kentucky Initiative, Together We Will Bluegrass, Indivisible Bluegrass, the New Kentucky Project, Save our Schools Kentucky, Kentucky Public Retirees, Kentuckians for the Commonwealth, Together Frankfort, Kentucky National Organization for Women, the People’s Campaign, our Revolution Central Kentucky, Central Kentucky Council for Peace and Justice, and Kentucky United.

WHY:  State employees, retirees and others are rallying together to strongly oppose the proposed changes to the state pension system. We demand full funding of the system and encourage the legislature to explore tax reform and other new dedicated sources of revenue to fund it.

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Media contacts:

Katie Hancock, United We Stand―Kentucky Government Employees

859-200-3906, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nema Brewer, Together We Will Bluegrass
859-230-3667, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Melanie Taylor, United We Stand
859-619-0467

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From KASA (Kentucky Association of School Administrators)

After weeks of waiting, the actual draft legislation for proposed pension changes has been made public. The draft bill (505 pages), a summary, and a side-by-side comparison of current and proposed retirement provisions is available. Also included is KASA’s letter to Governor Bevin sharing our points of concern.

It’s exactly what we thought; that is, it’s worse than we thought.

All of the provisions we have shared with you over the past few weeks that damage past, current and future members of TRS are in the bill - a defined benefit plan for new hires that will diminish the security and amount of their retirement; taking away the accumulated sick leave retirement calculation for current TRS members as of July 1, 2023; and denying five years of cost of living adjustments to current and future retirees, who have already paid the cost of those adjustments.

There are other unnecessarily punitive provisions as well, such as a cap on earnings that count toward retirement benefit calculation. But in reading the bill we have discovered other harmful provisions that have never been mentioned previously.

Specifically, the bill does away with any requirement that local boards provide sick leave to teachers and administrators. In addition, it does away with the requirement that sick leave accumulate, and that it transfer when changing employers.

These changes are particularly puzzling in light of the previously mentioned provision that deletes sick leave from retirement calculation. If sick leave will no longer impact retirement, then why do away with it completely?

The good news is that your calls to legislators are working. Several Republican legislators have publicly stated they will not support the bill, and no Democrats are known to support it.

Call (800) 372-7181 and keep sharing with your legislators the points we have sent you previously. In short, this bill is bad for educators and bad for students. It will cause permanent harm to Kentucky schools.

With your continued efforts, we can keep this bill from becoming law.

Keep up the good work. It’s our best hope.

 

 

Comments  

0 #1 Sara Ott 2017-11-02 23:27
I have paid into KTRS since I was 23 years old until I was retired. The retired teachers should not be required to forfeit COLAs which could cause us to lose about 71,000 dollars over a lifetime. We need that money for medical expenses that insurance does not pay for. We should not be required to bail out Frankfort because the money we trusted to go into KTRS was going into other funds.
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