Kansas lawmakers staying course on public pensions

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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Kansas legislators don’t appear enthusiastic this year about altering the course they’ve set in previous years for improving the long-term financial health of the state pension system.

The House Pensions and Benefits Committee rejected a bill Monday to create a 401(k)-style plan for teachers and public employees hired after 2015. The action came on a voice vote.

The committee rejected another bill to increase benefits for teachers and government workers who retired on or before July 1, 2009. It also failed on a voice vote.

Cost was an issue for both measures. The state pension system projects a $10.3 billion gap between anticipated revenues and its commitments to retirees through June 2033.

In 2011 and 2012, the state enacted laws that are expected to close the gap.

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