Kentucky House Schedules Private Meeting To Discuss Pensions (Updated)

The Kentucky House of Representatives has scheduled an unusual closed-door meeting to discuss recommended changes to the state’s struggling public pension systems.

Republican House Speaker Jeff Hoover has invited all 100 state representatives to attend a private meeting in Frankfort on Tuesday. The meeting comes one day after state-funded consultants recommended eliminating 16 years’ worth of cost-of-living raises for some retirees while freezing the benefits of current workers and moving them into a 401(k)-style plan.

An attorney for The Associated Press has objected to the meeting. House Majority Caucus Attorney Laura Hendrix said the meeting would not break state law because it is a meeting of the House Majority Caucus, which is exempt from the open meetings law. She said the majority caucus has invited the minority caucus to attend.

Update (11:40 a.m.): A Democratic lawmaker has walked out of a private meeting of the state House of Representatives after he said his request to make the gathering public was denied.

State Rep. Jim Wayne told reporters that Republican House Speaker Jeff Hoover refused to consider his motion to make the meeting public. Wayne said it was not appropriate for lawmakers to attend a private meeting to discuss a taxpayer-funded study of the pension system. But Wayne was the only lawmaker to leave.

House lawmakers are scheduled to discuss a state-funded report that recommends major changes to the state’s public pension system. Hoover said in an email the meeting was for “informational purposes only.”

A lawyer from The Associated Press objected to the meeting.

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