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Archive for Sunday, August 28, 2011

Group taking KPERS discussion to public

August 28, 2011

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— A commission considering proposals to address long-term financial issues with the state pension system will take its work on the road.

The Kansas Public Employees Retirement System Study Commission soon should begin a series of six public hearings outside of Topeka. A specific schedule of dates and cities hasn’t been set yet.

Co-chairs of the commission sought permission and the accompanying costs of the meetings last week.

“This is not a request that we make lightly or without regard for the financial constraints” facing state leaders, Sen. Jeff King, R-Independence, and Rep. Mitch Holmes, R-St. John, said in a letter to the Legislative Coordinating Council.

But the co-chairs argued that any changes to KPERS could have far-reaching effects and as many people as possible should weigh in on the issue.

KPERS, which has about 270,000 members, provides pensions for teachers and government workers. And while current benefits are safe, the system faces a shortfall of nearly $8 billion between revenues and promised benefits.

Groups that support shrinking government and oppose taxes want the state to establish a 401(k)-type plan. Groups that represent employees want the state to face its obligations and fund the system at an appropriate level. Gov. Sam Brownback has said he wants the state to move toward a 401(k)-style plan for new employees.

The LCC, composed of legislative leaders from both parties, approved the outside-the-capital meetings, and the approximately $2,000 to $2,500 that each of the meetings will cost.

“I think it’s very important that KPERS beneficiaries and retirees have an opportunity to have some say-so at these hearings,” said Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka.

The 13-member study commission is charged with giving the Legislature its recommendations by Jan. 6.

Comments

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

Them legislators can start with themselves and the sweetheart payout/payoff they've arranged for themselves. Will they?

Even though they only really "earn" for a couple of months of the year, they get credit for earning it all year long.

For the legislator listing all income - the daily rate, subsistence and allowance - this is how annualization is calculated:

•$88.66 (daily rate) x 31 (days) x 12 (months) = $32,981.52

•$123 (subsistence) x 31 (days) x 12 (months) = $45,756

•$7,083 non-session allowance.

Altogether, that equals $85,820.52, and that's the pay figure that would be used for that legislator retiring now.

Now then, that political hack who is president of the Kansas hillbilly senate or whatever the operation is has defended this obscene payout because legilsators work for "...so little money....". Ok....if that is the case, why aren't all civil servants for the state of Kansas allowed to have their KPERS benefit calculated on a 372 day work year?

In calendar year 2010, employer contributions for legislators in KPERS slightly topped $900,000. (That "employer" is the People of the state of Kansas AKA the state General Fund).

A legislator retiring with an annualized pay of $85,820.52, and with 10 years' service, would have an annual KPERS benefit of $15,018.60, for a monthly benefit of $1,251.55, according to KPERS. If the retiring legislator had 20 years' service, the annual benefit would be $30,037.20, and monthly, $2,503.10.

A state social services worker in a supervisory role retired in 1995 after 15 years and draws a monthly KPERS benefit of $524. That is equal to the monthly benefit for a county-level commercial appraiser who retired at 65, vested at nine years with KPERS.

It's for the children, you know. shrug

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

William Buchanan wbuchana@sedgwick.gov

Jeff King jeffkingks@hotmail.com;Jeff.King@sena...

Edward Condon econdon@sterneckcapital.com

chris@palmersquarecap.comp>chris@palmersquarecap.com> paul@sbhlaw.comp>paul@sbhlaw.com> advisors@finben.comp>advisors@finben.com>

Brian Winter brian@cattleusa.com

steve.morris@senate.ks.gov">p>steve.morris@senate.ks.gov Fax: (785) 296-6718 rep@mitchholmes.comp>rep@mitchholmes.com>

Here's the contact data to the boys on that there cmte. Be advised that good ole state senator Morris is a welfare recipient in addition to having placed himself in a position to get a KPERS pension for being well.....a welfare recipient. Between 1995 - - -2010 our Senate President has raked in at least $796,185 in welfare payments. http://farm.ewg.org/persondetail.php?custnumber=A08217168

Put that in your pipe and smoke it....

Crazy_Larry 3 years, 5 months ago

It's a big club, and we ain't in it. I think George Carlin described it best: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acLW1v... (rated NC-17; language)

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

Actually, I left out a few. Here they are:

Senator Jeff King jeffkingks@hotmail.com Jeff.King@senate.ks.gov

Senator Laura Kelly laura@laurakelly.org Laura.Kelly@senate.ks.gov

Steven Johnson steven.johnson@house.ks.gov

Representative Ed Trimmer ed.trimmer@house.ks.gov etrimmer@cox.net

Rebecca Proctor rproctor@eversetkc.net

Here are links to be mindful of:

http://www.uss.ku.edu/KPERS%20July11.pdf This lists everyone and how to phone and write to them.

http://www.skyways.org/ksleg/KLRD/2011CommMembership/2011-kpers-study.pdf is a cmte. document showing who all is in the room and what not.

giveitback 3 years, 5 months ago

Unbelievable! KPERS has this BIG short fall and Brownback wants to take the extra money saved on a KU project and spend it on a Topeka remodeling project. Pay your bills first Govenor! So many people are having a fit about KPERS and rightly so. If it was done like it was designed in the first place and everybody stuck to the rules and kept putting in thier part, we would not be where were at now. A broke system that no one will touch. It was shoved down my throat when I started working for the Goverment. Now I am told I should take reduced benifits and and maybe nothing at all. I kept up my end of the deal, so Brownback needs to keep up his. I know he did not make this mess, but he knew what it was when he took the job. Put the 4.3 mil into the KPERS fund!

Mike Edson 3 years, 5 months ago

KPERS is a sinking ship. Pull your money out while you can. Leave your current KPERS covered job for one that does not require a mandatory contribution. For lower wage employees, the mandatory KPERS contribution takes food off their table and causes them to rely on social services.

Michial Coffman 3 years, 5 months ago

So you are telling me to quit my job? Have you tried to find a job in this market? I

pittstatebb 3 years, 5 months ago

You cannot "pull your money out while you can" unless you quit your job. If KPERS sinks then we are all in trouble (not just those depending upon a KPERS pension), if KPERS does not sink it will far and away be a better choice for workers currently in the system than pulling their money out and stuffing it under their mattress, or into a risk filled 401k.

We can run numbers, but KPERS is a lifetime benefit. A 401k is a until it is gone benefit. There is plenty of research showing that workers with 401k's are not putting enough away for retirement and will be dependent upon SS to live in retirement.

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

Alceste believes the fix is in on this KPERS commission. That’s because Gov. Sam Brownback, who supports switching to at least a hybrid system, will appoint five members to the commission, and House Speaker Mike O’Neal, R-Hutchinson, who also favors moving to a 401(k)-style plan, will have two appointees — creating a seven-vote majority. http://blogs.kansas.com/weblog/2011/05/is-fix-in-on-kpers-commission/

Here is other data about these "meetings":

http://www.keepingthekansaspromise.com/kpers-study-commission/updates-from-the-kpers-study-commission-july-22-2011/ is kinda a "blow by blow" of the first meeting.

http://169.147.4.31/ksleg/KLRD/agendas/kpers.pdf is the Agenda. Look at the people being brought into Kansas from Out of State. The Pew Trust MIGHT be for window dressing only?

http://kansasreporter.org/76120.aspx Read it and weep.

Put pressure on these people. You have their contact email addresess. Contact 'em and express your disdain at the down right theft which has occurred by the Legislature which is paying themselves quite nicely with their own KPERS pay outs.....You put in your money, why did the legislature stiff you?

Glenn Deck has thrown in the towell and is "retiring" from KPERS. Do you think he is even in the KPERS plan? Think again. Word on the street is that he has a totally different retirement package. $172,578.56 is what he was given last year....and for what? Did he ever go to bat for you....insisting that the legislature, his employer, do what they were supposed to do and make those contributions, or did he just sit back and milk toast it into the ground.....all the while banking his own "pay" and knowing his retirement benefits were....ummmm.....ahhh.....different? You be the judge. http://www.kpers.org/deckretirement.html

Centerville 3 years, 5 months ago

Excellent reinforcement for the principle that no one should be elected to office who would be depending on that salary for a living.

Blessed4x 3 years, 5 months ago

"Groups that represent employees want the state to face its obligations and fund the system at an appropriate level"

I can barely fund my own retirement in the private sector. Funding yours too is just too much to ask. Make it a better system or increase the employee contribution. The days of the sweetheart deals are over.

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

Hey Rich Colson:

How about telling your legislator what you think? If anybody has a sweetheart deal, it would be said legislator. 372 working days in a year....each one with income that YOU get to fund for retirement purposes?

Why you pick the lowly state worker to pick on? Why start at the top? Chop off the head and the rest of the body dies, right?

Brmstr 3 years, 5 months ago

While I appreciate the sentiment of the message, I believe that you are incorrect in your closing statement. The sweetheart deals exist, Congress, elected officials, Wall Street; those hyprocrits are all taken care of well beyond what you or I can easily fathom...

If only we all knew where all the ARRA monies went and the TARP dollars... There are millions being reserved for the 'cultured classes' wherein their retirements will not be in jeopardy in any way, shape or form...

Brmstr 3 years, 5 months ago

Why doesn’t KOSE take issue (and/or court action) against KPERS (Glen Deck) or the Legislature? Talk about a toothless paper tiger; does KOSE do anything for its members?

They are ineffectual and impotent in working on State employee issues…

I cannot believe the Legislative CASH COW retirement issue has circulated among news articles in Kansas almost a year; the Legislature (and Gov. Admin. recommendations) have been to blame for the underfunding of KPERS for years. KPERS testimony has seldom expressed the long-term impact or outcomes of the Legislative actions (i.e. underfunding the Expert requested/required amounts), but why would/should Glen Deck be too forceful in recommendations; he has his own Golden parachute...

This is just as criminal as the Congressional benefits received by those elected to D.C. There are too many that once they get into their own 'Club' and the platinum benefits; they disregard their responsibilities to those they are supposed to serve and protect.

PATHETIC...

If there were ANY morals among these people, they would crusade to correct it or at least champion efforts to shine a light on the injustices being committed. I won't hold my breath...and neither should anyone else...

Jingal 3 years, 5 months ago

In looking at the "blow by blow" account of the first meeting (link in the Alceste post above), it appears that Glenn Deck has provided the facts as regards the primary source of the underfunding in a very straightforward manner. For someone who serves in the "hot seat" this seems quite corageous. And "word on the street" (aka "I just made this up") that says he gets a golden parachute is laughable. Glenn Deck is a KPERS member, and his benefits are set forth in statute just like yours and mine (and the past litany of legislator's responsible for the current situation).

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

Perhaps. .....just typing what I've hard. At any rate, when you're getting $172,578.56 you're in a much stronger/better/superior position to fund an alternative retirement package all on your lonesome, eh? Not so for the $34k per annum state worker who hasn't had a step increase in how many years?

KPERS has had problems for years and years under Deck. He was even outsourcing monies to pay for legal counsel on bird dogging IRS rules and regulations changes. In numerous catastrophic boondoggles, KPERS was denying implementation of IRS rules and regulations changes because KPERS was unaware of them! One example was the ability to do a trustee to trustee transfer of 457 monies when the sending account was from a different state's plan. Examples abound.

However, Deck should not be made out the fall guy in this comedy of errors, which he probably is and thus the retirement. It's the criminals in the legislature and their cronies who surrond them in the Legislature (Revisor of Statutes office; Kansas Legislative Research Department; etc.) coupled with plain old moral cowardice and normal Kansas thinking and a big PLUS here....the refusal of KPERS members to monitor on their own what was going on. The few who did monitor were dismissed as gnats.

Alceste 3 years, 5 months ago

CAUTION: The video below is for adult only viewing. NC-17. Another poster in the education thread found this wonderfully succicnt analysis from Mr. Carlin. It is just sooooo correct. "They own this f***ing place. It's a big club and you ain't in it. The table is tilted folks. The game is rigged."

"It's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acLW1v... is George Carlin's take on KPERS

Alceste 3 years, 4 months ago

The Sixteen States That are Killing Their Pensions

http://247wallst.com/2011/03/04/the-sixteen-states-that-are-killing-their-pensions/

Funny that this "group" here in Kansas have interviewed a couple of these 16 states. Seems like the deal is done.

Where's the press on the road show? Have the meeting dates and times been announced?

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