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Lawmakers Say Tax Reform Unlikely


Republican leaders of the General Assembly are throwing water on the idea that they’ll make major changes to the state’s tax code during the upcoming legislative session. 

Lawmakers have to craft a new two-year budget for the state and are hoping to overhaul the pension systems in the session which lasts from Jan. 2 until mid-April. 

At a Kentucky Chamber of Commerce event Tuesday, Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer said he doesn’t think there will be time for tax reform in the upcoming session. 

“If we can get out of this session by Friday the 13th of April, which is the constitutional day we are currently scheduled to adjourn, if we can get out of there with pension reform, a budget and a road plan I’ll think it’s a success,” 

For the first time in Kentucky history, Republicans will have control of the House, Senate and governorship during a budget-writing session. 

State government has struggled to bring in enough tax revenue to meet budgetary demands in recent years and the state’s ailing pension systems require larger and larger contributions to remain solvent. 

Republican lawmakers say they plan to approve changes to the pension systems in the first weeks of the legislative session and hope a draft of a pension bill will be released before Christmas. 

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