Pension bill sponsor says work continues to finalize plan; expects committee hearing next week

02/23/2018 11:19 AM

FRANKFORT – The sponsor of the pension bill says that while there is very little “wiggle room” in making changes to Senate Bill 1, there is a possibility that there could be some modifications to the current plan before it is passed out of committee.

Sen. Joe Bowen, R-Owensboro, told reporters on Friday that some changes with the bill are currently taking place.

“I’ll not deny that there are going to be some changes to the original bill, when you have a document of this magnitude, you’re always going to have some changes to it,” Bowen said.

“Typically a committee sub which that cleans up technicalities that addresses issues that may have been overlooked.”

Bowen admits that there seems to be one pick sticking point with the current bill.

“The big issue right now is the COLA issue, but if it weren’t that, honestly, it would be something else, but that’s the biggest push back,” Bowen said.

Bowen admits that as for the public, he’s gotten little negative feedback on the pension bill.

“I think people in my district at least, people understand the need for this piece of legislation which is obviously going to sure up the systems and bring them to solvency,” Bowen said. “I think they understand that and get the message. Most of the negative feedback that I’m getting are from across the state.”

Although the process to come up with a workable pension plan has been taxing, Bowen admits that he takes satisfaction in that this General Assembly is taking on something that lawmakers avoided addressing in past years.

“At the end of the day, this is good public policy, and to get to good public policy, there are rough patches along the way and you have to know that and you have to accept that,” Bowen said. “Certainly there have been rough patches, but it hasn’t frustrated me.”

Acting Speaker of the House David Osborne, R-Prospect, said on Friday that he feels that there are enough votes in his chamber to pass SB 1 in its current form.


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