Lawmakers await specifics of Bevin’s pension-relief plan changes


FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Governor Matt Bevin has a proposed pension-relief plan.

House Majority Floor Leader John “Bam” Carney says it’s not perfect, but as of now he’d vote for it.

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“The alternative, in my view, could be very drastic in terms of people losing their jobs, we’re probably looking at lots of people losing jobs possibly, and certainly a decrease in certain services to the citizens of the Commonwealth without some action,” said Carney.

Governor Bevin says he plans to make changes to his proposed plan, to get more lawmakers on board to pass it in a special session.

Representative Robert Goforth, who just lost to the governor in the May primary, opposed the original proposal.

“I cannot support any piece of legislation that rules them inactive and forces them to not be able to receive their benefits until they’re 65,” said Goforth.

He says he recently spoke with Bevin’s Deputy Chief of Staff, who told him they were going to hold firm on one of the main issues Goforth had with freezing employee benefits.

“At that time, he said they were unwilling to budge. That that was the root of their cost savings. These folks have been promised a pension, and we need to make sure we deliver, especially on the benefits that they earned,” said Goforth.

Without a new law, regional universities and many quasi-governmental agencies like health departments, face ballooning pension costs starting July 1st. A risk Leader Carney says the Commonwealth can’t take.

Governor Bevin’s Office released the following statement:

“The Governor is working in good faith with legislators to find a solution on this critical issue. His private conversations with legislators and their leaders to attain resolution is ongoing. Commenting on hypotheticals at this point would serve no constructive purpose.”