Republican Louisville Metro Councilwoman Marilyn Parker (District 18), citing concerns over the lack of real pension reform in the 2013 meeting of the Kentucky General Assembly has made the decision to forgo taking a government pension as part of her benefits as a member of the Louisville Metro Council.
“The Kentucky Pension System needs to be reformed. In my first few months on the Metro Council, I have pushed for substantial reforms to the way the state pension system functions. Declining my right to participate in the pension plan for elected officials is just another way for me to bring attention to this important issue,” said Parker.
“Kentucky faces a $33 billion government pension debt and currently lacks the sense of urgency needed to make real reforms. My goal is to lead by example and send a message to our leaders in Frankfort. I encourage our representatives in Frankfort to listen to the bipartisan task force that spent six months garnering information from the experts who recommended putting new employees into a hybrid cash balance plan which still has guaranteed benefits.”
Last week, Councilwoman Marilyn Parker submitted the Kentucky Retirement Systems Rejection Form for participating in the Mayors and Members of City Legislative Bodies Pension Plan. This letter was sent after continued efforts to pass meaningful reform stalled in the Kentucky House of Representatives signaling that comprehensive pension reform would again have to wait until a special session or the 2014 regular meetings of the Kentucky General Assembly.
Councilwoman Parker was elected to serve as the Councilwoman for District 18 of the Louisville Metro Council in November 2012. Newly elected members of city governments have a one time opportunity to decline participation in the Kentucky Retirement System’s Pension upon taking office. Councilwoman Parker will be one of the first people to take the step of declining such benefits since Merged Government began in 2003.