This week, WLEX in Lexington, KY aired a special investigative report looking at legislator pension benefits. BIPPS President Phil Moffett was interviewed for the report which you can view below…
Now, it’s not only Gov. Beshear not showing up for debates, now Bob Farmer, his agriculture candidate just didn’t bother to attend a long-planned debate at Western Kentucky University on Wednesday.
Give Republican James Comer credit for showing up. But wouldn’t it be great for him to do what a candidate for another unnecessary office, Ken Moellman, is doing ? Moellman’s campaign platform involves calling for getting rid of the office of Kentucky State Treasurer.
Seriously, why does Kentucky need an agriculture commissioner?
Should taxpayers be funding these offices — just because someone wants a stepping stone to higher office?
Thanks to a number of incentives, including what is currently a much more favorable business climate, Omnicare – a Fortune 400 company – recently announced it was pulling up stakes in Northern Kentucky and moving across the river to Ohio.
That sort of thing happens when states like Kentucky allow excessive influence from government employees in the state’s legislative affairs. Inevitably, policies that shun business lead to business shunning the state. The state’s economy suffers accordingly.
However, Ohio may be poised to do Kentucky a huge favor. There is a ballot item up there that will level the competition-for-business playing field again, though in the wrong direction.
This ballot item will repeal Senate Bill 5, an important law reducing the excessive influence of public employee unions in Ohio’s state affairs. Repealing this law would once again subject the Buckeye state to the powerful, parochial and business- and economy-adverse activities of its public employee unions.
Well, I live in Kentucky. We are still smarting from losing a really major business to Ohio’s currently better business climate.
So, bring it on, Ohio voters! Kentucky will probably benefit from your blunder if you re-hobble yourselves to business-adverse policies again.
Before you Ohioans are done, maybe we could even get Omnicare back!
An important Herald-Leader article on the problems with our under-funded public employee retirement programs indicates that investment returns for the Kentucky Teacher Retirement System (KTRS) under-performed investments made by the Kentucky Retirement Systems, which cover other state and local workers. Per the article, the Teacher Retirement System produced only a 4.8 percent return on investments over the past ten years while other programs returned a notably higher 5.51 percent.
Both rates of return are significantly lower than budget assumptions, which means the unfunded liability to the taxpayer to back both programs grew substantially.
Here is something to think about: In an effort to boost returns, the retirement programs are investing in overseas securities, which of course ships more money away from both the state and national economies. Per the article:
“KTRS now invests significantly in international stocks.”
Somehow, teachers, that doesn’t seem helpful.
The Kentucky Department of Education released the most recent list of ‘Persistently Low Achieving Schools‘ (PLAs) last week. As part of our 2011 Open Record Project, requests were submitted to obtain the most recent performance evaluations for the superintendent of each district that had a school on the list.
This is a follow up to “Rewarding Failure” which looked at how superintendents of underperforming districts were rewarded with glowing reviews and in many cases with substantial pay increases.
You can track the records requests for these PLA schools/districts here. Information will be updated as it is available.
The ‘Green Crowd’ is going ‘Ga Ga’ over totally electric cars such as the Chevy Volt and the Ford Focus Electric, but an article from the authoritative Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers’ on line “The Institute” shows that there may be a long gap between what Greenies wish and what actually can happen.
• “Several electric vehicles on one residential street can contribute to a brownout or even a blackout by overloading the local distribution transformer.”
• “If you are on the road, you may find it difficult to recharge your vehicle because even though EV charging stations are being built, they are still few and far between.”
• “And there are significant environmental concerns about the disposal of used up EV batteries in landfills.”