Brownback not jumping into talk on pension bonds

? Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and officials of the state’s public pension system aren’t saying publicly whether they favor issuing bonds to help close a close a long-term funding gap.

A study commission is considering whether the state should issue up to $5 billion in bonds. The panel expects to make a recommendation by the end of the year.

The Kansas Public Employees Retirement System projects an $8.3 billion gap between anticipated revenues and benefits promised to retirees, teachers and government employees through 2033.

Brownback hasn’t been shy about pushing to move toward a 401(k)-style plan for new workers. But spokeswoman Sherriene (Shuh-REEN’) Jones-Sontag says Brownback will wait to see what the commission decides on bonds.

KPERS spokeswoman Kristen Basso says the pension system sees it as an issue for legislators to settle.