kentucky retirement systems

Kentucky Retirement Systems (

  Already home to one of the most underfunded public pension plans in the nation, Kentucky Retirement Systems is losing further ground through its investment choices.

Rob Canning

Matt Bevin, the Republican candidate for governor, said he isn’t worried about the use of “alternative investments” by the state’s troubled pension system for public workers.

Alternative investments make up about 35 percent of the Kentucky Retirement Systems fund’s assets. Managers of alternative investments generally require high fees for overseeing assets invested with hedge funds, oil and gas leases, timberland and leveraged buyouts. / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

The Kentucky Retirement Systems billed Hopkins County more than $51,000 last month for so-called pension spiking, or artificially raising employees’ wages to increase their benefits, but county officials are disputing the matter.

Hopkins County Attorney Byron Hobgood said the Kentucky Retirement System bill is for a retiree who lost wages during a long medical leave and then received a pay increase the following year when he returned to work.

Kentucky Retirement Systems, which runs the $16 billion pension and health care funds for state, city and county workers and retirees, will be providing more detail about the fees it pays to the managers of its so-called “alternative” investments.

Talks Between 7 Counties, Lawmakers Come Up Short

Aug 29, 2014
Photo by Bud Craft, courtesy Ky Legislative Research Commission.


An attempt at mediation between state lawmakers and a Louisville mental health nonprofit over its bankruptcy has yielded little progress. Earlier this month, member of Seven Counties Services and a handful of state lawmakers met to discuss what, if any, deal could be reached over the nonprofit’s bankruptcy filing.

Kentucky Retirement Systems (


Bank of America has agreed to pay $23 million in restitution to Kentucky Retirement Systems over fraudulent mortgage-backed securities that fueled the 2008 financial crash. 

The agreement is part of a $16.65 billion settlement with six states attorneys general, which the U.S. Department of Justice announced in a news conference Thursday.

 Kentucky's underperforming retirement system for state employees keeps secret details of its so-called "alternative investments," and critics are calling for more transparency so the risks and potential pratfalls can be fully assessed.

In its latest story, the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting looks at the secrecy behind where the Kentucky Retirement Systems makes its alternative investments—and the concerns it raises.

Kentucky Retirement Systems (


The troubled Kentucky Retirement Systems says a lawsuit brought against it by a small Northern Kentucky town should be dismissed.

In June, the city of Ft. Wright -- population 5,700 -- filed a civil suit against KRS over risky investments into Wall Street hedge funds with public money, seeking $50 million to cover the losses and to divorce its city and county employees from the state system.


Kentucky’s mounting pension troubles could get worse as the state plans to appeal a court ruling requiring certain quasi-governmental agencies be liable for pension debt.  

Last year, Seven Counties Services, a mental health nonprofit that contracts with state government, filed for bankruptcy over its pension debt.

Beshear Pleased With Appeal in Seven Counties Case

Jun 12, 2014

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear says he is pleased with a decision by the Kentucky Retirement Systems to appeal a recent ruling that would allow quasi-governmental agencies to withdraw from the beleaguered public pension system.