FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) – Separating the County Employees Retirement System from Kentucky Retirement Systems was debated at a meeting Monday of the Kentucky Retirement Systems Administrative Subcommittee.
Representatives from the Kentucky Association of Counties, Kentucky League of Cities, Kentucky School Boards Association, Kentucky Association of School Superintendents and Kentucky Professional Firefighters, all members of CERS, testified on behalf of the separation.
The CERS is the largest system within KRS, with 236,000 members and $13.9 billion in assets, said Bryanna Carroll, the Kentucky League of Cities manager of governmental affairs. Yet they lack proper representation, she said.
“Despite being the largest system with 75 percent of the money and 63 percent of the membership, CERS only has 35 percent representation on the KRS Board – six of the 17 members,” she said.
Carroll also said they have only one of nine seats on the KRS investment committee and only one of seven seats on the actuarial committee.
Carroll testified that CERS has outperformed KRS when it comes to rate of return on investments, with an increase averaging 8.68 percent since 2001. “And it is the Kentucky Employees Retirement System, not CERS, that has seen total investments decline on average of 1.5 percent per year since Fiscal Year 2001.”
She also complained that KRS administrative costs have gone up 247 percent between 2000 and 2018. “This is significant as CERS pays 63 percent of those administrative costs due to our membership.”