Where were the outcries over Ky. pension contribution shortages? They were there, just ignored.
by Ryan Alessi 12/10/2012
Kentucky leaders who say they were blindsided by the precarious financial condition of Kentucky’s public pension systems can’t say they weren’t warned.
State retirees, the board of the Kentucky Retirement Systems and policy experts have been waving their arms about a coming calamity dating back to 2002 — the first budget year that the legislature and governor agreed to cut the state’s contributions to the main the fund.
For instance, here’s the lead to a Dec. 15, 2003, Herald-Leader article by Karla Ward:
Preventing Kentucky’s government employee retirement systems from running out of money may require hundreds of millions of dollars from tax increases, cuts in other state programs or some economic miracle within 10 years.
“If we just leave it alone, we’re going to have ourselves a huge mess,” said Michael Childress, executive director of the Kentucky Long-Term Policy Research Center.
Since then, the General Assembly and the next two governors signed off on five more biannual budgets that also shortchanged the state’s contributions into the Kentucky Retirement Systems.