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Former KRS Trustee Sued to Protect Retiree Pensions


Kentucky Treasurer Allison Ball filed an intervening motion in the lawsuit between former Kentucky Retirement Systems Chairman and Trustee Tommy Elliott and Governor Bevin today (July 11).

Treasurer Ball is attempting to stop Elliott from inappropriately using $50,000 of state pension funds to pay for his legal counsel.

“My obligation as the State Treasurer is to the people of Kentucky and our retirees,” Treasurer Ball released in a statement.  “Fifty thousand hard earned pension dollars should be spent on retirees.  After conducting an internal review, it is clear there is no legal authority for a removed trustee to use retiree pension money to pay for legal counsel, which is what Mr. Elliott is attempting to do.”

Treasurer Ball is referring to the case Mr. Elliott filed claiming the Governor wrongfully removed him from his position on the KRS board.  Mr. Elliott is leaning on KRS 61.645, a statute that says current trustees may use money from the Kentucky Retirement System’s budget to pay for legal fees in certain circumstances. Treasurer Ball believes that statute does not apply here.

“KRS 61.645 applies to current members of the board.  Mr. Elliott is not a current member,” Treasurer Ball explained. “Whether the termination of Mr. Elliott was rightful or wrongful, he has, in fact, been terminated and, therefore, cannot use $50,000 of hard earned money of Kentucky retired workers to pay for his legal challenge.”

“As State Treasurer, my job is to be the watchdog of the people’s money, including our retirees’ pensions,” Ball continued.  “I am confident that the judge will rule in favor of the people.”

The case was filed in Franklin Circuit Court.

(story provided by Courts for Kentucky)

Paul Hitchcock earned his Masters in Communications from Morehead State University and Bachelors in Radio-TV/Psychology from Georgetown College. A veteran broadcaster for more than 40 years and an avid fan of blues, jazz and American roots music. Hitchcock has been with WMKY since 1986 and was named General Manager in 2003. He currently hosts "Muddy Bottom Blues" (Fri., 8pm-9pm), "Nothin' But The Blues" (Sat., 8pm-12am), "Sunday Night Jazz Showcase" and "Live From The Jazz Lounge" (Sun., 8pm-9pm) and "The Golden Age of Radio" (Sun., 2pm-3pm). He also serves as producer for "A Time For Tales" and "The Reader's Notebook."
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