Sen. Danny Carroll questions whether all lawmakers have the stomach to make tough decisions on pension and tax reform

08/08/2017 04:32 PM

BENTON – With a special session related to pension and tax reform on the horizon, count Sen. Danny Carroll, R-Paducah, as one who believes that something meaningful must get done this fall.

Carroll believes that while there is no silver bullet to totally fix things immediately, the time to do it is now there are some things that can be done to stop the bleeding.

“Everybody understands this is a long-term plan, we’re looking at 25, 30 years and I think we deal with this in phases,” Carroll said. “We go in, and look at the pension system, we make the changes that we need too, understanding that there is an inviolable contract, and we respect the promises that we made to our retirees, but there are some changes that we can make.”

While Carroll senses the fact that legislators now realize that there is not more kicking the can down the road when it comes to pensions, he wonders if enough have the intestinal fortitude to make the hard decisions when it comes to effectively addressing the situation.

“They understand the urgency of where we are right now,” Carroll said. “Of course, the big question is as far as having the stomach to do what we need to do, and all of my colleagues in Frankfort are going to jump on board and are we going to take the steps we need to make those hard decisions.

Carroll admits that all potential legislation for the upcoming 2018 session takes a place on the back burner until the pension and tax reform special session takes place.

“These two issues, everything else hinges on what we do with those, and so that’s why it’s so important, and I think that’s why everyone is focusing all of their attention now on those two main situations that we need to address,” Carroll said. “It’s not that folks aren’t working on other pieces of legislation, we all are, but we all recognize what the priorities are and I think that’s what the public expects of us at this point.”


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