Some Kentucky part-time lawmakers collect at least $50,000 in public pensions

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WYMT) - As the pension debate continues to be a hot topic in Frankfort, public records revealed that some part-time current and former lawmakers have large pensions.

The Herald-Leader reports that a pension-sweetening law, passed by the General Assembly in 2005, allows nearly two dozen past and present legislators to get lifetime pensions worth more than $50,000 a year. This does not include retirement plans they made at other jobs.

Those in this group include Senate President Robert Stivers, a Republican from Manchester, and former House Speaker Greg Stumbo, a Democrat from Prestonsburg. Stivers is in line to collect $56,448 a year when he retires, and Stumbo is currently getting $77,196 a year.

To put this in perspective, the average payout is $21,587 for retired state government workers and $11,739 for retired local government workers.

The Herald-Leader also reports that the legislators' pension system is 98 percent funded, while the state workers' pension system is 13 percent funded.

A spokesman for Stivers said the senator is working on reducing pension benefits for lawmakers, but the reform was lost along with the pension bill that was ruled unconstitutional.

To see the Herald-Leader's complete list of Kentucky legislators who have or will draw a pension of at least $50,000, click here.

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