Analysis: Dec. 18 most likely week for pension special session

12/04/2017 01:20 PM

Gov. Matt Bevin, R-Kentucky, has been adamant there will be a special session of the Kentucky General Assembly this year, but only one week seems to be the likely culprit for the call — the week of Dec. 18.

Clearly the special session is not this week, and no word has yet emerged that the Republican members of the House of Representatives are on-board, with a “watered down” pension reform package meant to deal with more than $30 billion in unfunded pension liabilities.

Members of the Senate Republican caucus are reportedly on the same page and ready to deal with pension reforms, before the General Assembly reconvenes on Jan. 2, 2018 for the 60-day budget session.

There are several factors that come into play in deciding the week.

First of which is the days the General Assembly can work; the legislature cannot meet on Sunday’s or on during a state holiday, according to the state Constitution. That would leave the week of Dec. 11 and the week of Dec. 18 as the most likely for lawmakers to be called back to Frankfort.

However, we can now rule out the week of Dec. 11.

Senate President Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, is the chair-elect of the Council of State Governments. The council meets in Las Vegas, Nevada on Dec. 14 – 16, and Stivers would need to be present at that convention — making him unavailable to lead the Senate GOP supermajority the week of the 11th.

That makes the week of Dec. 18 the likely only time the General Assembly could be called back into a special session by Gov. Bevin at a cost of more than $60,000 a day, before they return next year.

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