Letters to the Editor

Letters: Just fund the pensions; Looney threat against court; Too little support for pro-teacher candidates

A sign was placed Monday at the bottom of the steps inside Kentucky Capitol , where a crowd gathered to protest Gov. Matt Bevin’s surprise legislative session.
A sign was placed Monday at the bottom of the steps inside Kentucky Capitol , where a crowd gathered to protest Gov. Matt Bevin’s surprise legislative session. mdorsey@herald-leader.com

Just fund the pensions

Kentucky Retirement Systems stakeholders are gratified that the Kentucky Supreme Court unanimously upheld a lower court ruling that the manner in which Senate Bill 151, a bill that made sweeping changes in public pensions, violated the state’s constitution.

Lost in all the discussion of the underhanded way in which the bill was introduced, considered and passed within a few hours is the irrefutable fact that the bill did not provide significant actuarial savings for KRS. That’s not an opinion, that’s the assessment of the KRS actuaries.

The overheated rhetoric that SB 151 somehow “saves” KRS or even materially improves its fiscal status is not supported by facts. Stakeholders will be urging legislators to reject any pension bill that makes further pension benefit changes beyond those made during comprehensive pension reform in 2013. After all, those reforms were hailed as a national model for pension reform. The path forward is clear: Fund the pensions and leave them alone.

Jim Carroll

Frankfort

Looney attack on court

So are our leaders in Frankfort, who have bruised egos because their odoriferous sewage/pension was ruled unanimously unconstitutional, now going to do a West Virginia and try to impeach all the members of the Kentucky Supreme Court to get even?

Will someone please cue up the “Looney Tunes” theme song and play it a couple of times for us all to hear?

Maybe our leaders in Frankfort first need to take a bonehead course in Kentucky constitutional law and the proper way to bring a law into existence before they go flaming into the night, waving pitchforks and howling at the moon. It would save Kentucky taxpayers a lot of money if they did.

Gene Lockhart

Lexington

Streamline voting

Some ways to speed up voting in Kentucky:

▪ Keep polls open until 7 p.m.

▪ Allow absentee ballots to be filed without an excuse.

▪ Use digital scans of paper ballot.

Dan Maenza

Lexington

Election support lacking

I agree that the passion and power shown by the Kentucky Education Association, teachers and public employees earlier this year simply fizzled during the recent elections.

Approximately five weeks prior to the elections, I observed that there were only a few “Remember in November” signs in yards and I had received only a few fliers focusing on candidates who supported the teachers and public employees.

I shared my concerns with Colman Elridge, KEA government relations director. Elridge and I discussed the importance of KEA and school district involvement in this election. He shared how KEA was supporting the candidates, but I shared that the candidates needed stronger visible support. Unfortunately, support for our candidates didn’t appear to improve.

We can’t afford to repeat this pattern for the 2019 and 2020 elections. This election is critical, especially for the Kentucky governor’s race. Are the KEA, teachers, public employees and retired teachers ready to rally for the new candidates?

Sara Porter

Winchester

Trump: great divider

I can’t quite comprehend the type of leadership that President Donald Trump is forcing on Americans. He raves and rants that he alone has created jobs for American workers and how unemployment is at a low. Trump and the Department of Labor play numbers games – they show and print what they want us to believe.

If these so-called tax cuts are for the working people, then why have the prices of commodities, utilities and insurance gone up? Why are companies such as Sears, K-Mart and others closing and filing for bankruptcy? Ford Motor Co. and other American companies are laying off hundreds of workers.

Folks, the party of Abraham Lincoln does not exist anymore. It’s called the Trump party. The Republican senators and representatives no longer represent us, the people who voted them into office. They cower to an authoritarian president who disrespects and has mocked the U.S. Constitution.

Trump has divided not only the United States but all the free-world countries through greed and ignorance. People say we have to respect the president of our country. I say I can respect the office of the presidency, but I don’t have to respect the individual holding that position.

Pete Herrera

Van Lear

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