Maybe the pension fix is finally here

Published 9:47 am Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Kentucky’s lawmakers and Gov. Matt Bevin continue to tell us how the proposed reform of the state’s public pension system is a strong plan that will help correct one of the worst programs in the country.

Now it is time to show us.

Legislative leaders have met recently with Bevin on a plan to reform the much-maligned pension systems for teachers, government employees and retirees that are considered among the most underfunded in the nation with arguably more than $30 billion in unfunded liabilities.

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Although the numbers are somewhat disputed, the retirement systems project to be at least $33 billion short of the funding required to pay retirement benefits over the next 30 years.

Lawmakers have said we will see the plan later this week, and all we can say is: It’s about time.

The specter of the unknown changes to the system has continued to loom across the state for months. In many cases, the uncertainty of the impact on current employees has prompted good employees to go ahead and retire for fear of how this will impact them.

Politics aside, lawmakers and the state of Kentucky have an obligation to these employees who have met their end of the requirements by paying into the retirement system.

The key component to this really requires lawmakers to walk a tightrope between taking care of employees who were made promises on retirement and making changes to the plans for future enrollees that will be sustainable.

Finding that balance is understandably difficult, but the state has allowed this to linger for far too long.

Now is time to see a real solution that can help Kentucky move forward.