Remember when Ernie Fletcher tried to cut $370 million from Kentucky’s budget a few hundred years ago?
Fletcher says the cutbacks will keep taxes down in the future. “Just as heavy cargo makes ships float lower and more vulnerable to high seas, too much debt also increases risk. The next time storm clouds hang over our economy, we’ll have to choose between tax increases and cutbacks in critical services if we don’t decrease our debt.”
Other projects cut from the budget: $4 million for a new Tech Center at Madisonville Community College, and $200,000 for park improvements and a miniature golf course at Lake Malone State Park in Muhlenberg County.
The governor said he made the cuts because he’s worried about amount of debt the state’s new spending plan called for.
Remember when everyone and their mother – including Republicans – freaked out over the reality that we were just cold flushing dollars down the toilet in the Commonwealth and we needed to do something about it? And instead of doing anything about it, they just kept going crazy and decided Ernest Lee was the devil?
Funny how that works. Funny how all those predictions – like this in bold above – have come true. Like furloughs, Medicaid, et al.
Even the Legislative Research Commission recognizes the nightmare Kentucky faces:
Kentucky is certainly familiar with the pension issue. The state-employees pension plan here carries about $25 billion in unfunded liabilities, a staggering amount. One bill dealing with the threat — SB 2 — has passed the Senate this session. Its approach is basically to close the current defined-benefits retirement plan to new state hires and replace it with a 401(k)-type plan, a much less expensive approach that has become standard in the private sector.
The pension-reform bill passed the Senate earlier this month and was sent to the House, where it has remained undiscussed since its referral to the House State Government Committee on Feb. 15, its fate there highly uncertain.
Must be embarrassing for Steve Beshear to experience the moment in which his increasingly complacent constituency realize that Ernie Fletcher was a better governor.