State’s Teachers Skip Work After GOP Bait-and-Switch on Pension Reform

By Sahid Fawaz

Teachers in Kentucky have had enough of Republican dirty politics.

CNN reports:

“Several Kentucky teachers won’t be going to work Friday after the state legislature approved changes to their pension on Thursday.

Educators, who are furious over the pension issue, called out of work in protest. At least nine counties have canceled school, the Kentucky Democrats tweeted early Friday. Kentucky has 120 counties.

The bill, which overhauls the state’s pension, passed mostly on party lines and heads to Gov. Matt Bevin, who supports reforming the system. State leaders say it’s critical to fix the pension crisis, which ranks as one of the worst in the US.

Kentucky teachers have opposed changes to their pension, which was in Senate Bill 1 that proposed reducing benefits.

But in a surprise move, elements of Senate Bill 1 were tucked into another bill, Senate Bill 151, which had been about sewage services, reported several CNN affiliates in Kentucky. And the new, nearly 300-page Senate Bill 151 passed both the state House and Senate Thursday to the chagrin of teachers and retirees who crammed into the Capitol.

‘Just vote no!’ they chanted Thursday. ‘Vote them out!’

The Kentucky Education Association, which represents teachers and other education professionals, slammed the maneuver as a ‘classic legislative bait and switch.’

‘It stripped all the “local provision of wastewater services” language out of SB151 and replaced it with many of the harmful provisions of SB1,’ the association stated.”

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