In a vote that fell along party lines, the House Election Contest Board agreed to a request by former Representative DJ Johnson for a recount of the 13th House District, which represents the City of Owensboro. He lost the seat to Democrat Jim Glenn by one vote.
The 2018 special session started Monday night with the introduction of two pension bills, both sponsored by Representative Jerry Miller. House Bill 1 is an updated version of the pension reform bill the Kentucky Supreme Court struck down last week, Senate Bill 151, and House Bill 2 includes language restating the phase-in of CERS employer contribution rates.
The Kentucky Supreme Court issued several opinions Thursday morning, including a ruling on the KLC-supported right-to-work law that the legislature passed in 2017. It also set an expedited hearing schedule on the lawsuit over Marsy's Law for Kentucky. However, it did not release a decision on the pension law.
The draft of an experience study conducted by the actuary for the Kentucky Retirement Systems raised questions about the amount of payroll growth being seen in the County Employees Retirement System (CERS). The KRS Board of Trustees received a preview of the report Thursday. It also recommends a slight reduction in CERS employer contribution rates.
KLC President and Mayfield Mayor Teresa Rochetti-Cantrell, First Vice President and Jeffersontown Mayor Bill Dieruf and Deputy Executive Director J.D. Chaney outlined the 2019 KLC Legislative Agenda to the Interim Joint Committee on Local Government. They explained why the separation of the County Employees Retirement System remains the top priority for cities and spoke on everything from equalization and modernization of the road funding formula to updating city classification reform.
The Interim Joint Committee on Appropriations and Revenue met on the campus of Northern Kentucky University. The Office of the State Budget Director warned members of the committee that the Fiscal Year budget may not end as flush as FY 2018. The Task Force on Tax Expenditures also met at NKU, along with the Budget Review Subcommittee on Justice & Judiciary, which discussed bail bond reform.
All seven members of the Kentucky Supreme Court peppered Governor Matt Bevin's general counsel and Attorney General Andy Beshear with questions as they argued before the state's high court on the constitutionality of Senate Bill 151, the pension reform law.