Just weeks before the General Assembly's session is set to begin, a scramble to Frankfort after Governor Matt Bevin calls a special session.
The purpose behind that session, the state's struggling pension system. But, with just four hours notice, the chambers were noticeably empty.
Neither the Senate or House had enough lawmakers serve by 8 p.m. to begin work. But by 9 p.m. both had gone into closed-door meetings with Republicans pouring over a plan and Democrats wondering whether the Governor's party had enough support to pass anything.
"You know, there's been some miss steps along the way by everybody. The biggest misstep is that we are still $60 billion in debt with this pension. This governor no matter what you think of him, he is willing to tackle this issue straight on and we're here. He called us into session. We've got a job to do. It could be a messy job, but we're going to do it because we've got to put Kentucky on the right path financially." - Rep. Kevin Bratcher, (R) KY House Dist. 29
"We have to do the right thing, regardless of party this is not how to operate government. Government has to be run with openness, with notice, and with transparency. The reason that this bill got struck down unanimously by the Supreme Court is because no one had any notice or a chance to read it and now we're here again on day one of a special session with four hours notice and you know no one has been given a copy of the bill. This is not the way we should do things." - Sen Morgan McGarvey, (D) KY Senate Minority Leader-Elect
The most notable absent member of the Senate was Floor Majority leader Damon Thayer. As the governor was announcing the special session, leader Thayer received a call saying his father had died in Michigan. Senate President Robert Stivers called for a moment of silence.
Midnight Update | Pension reform bill work to continue Tuesday
It is unclear when this session will begin in the Senate. We are hearing that legislation may be moving forward towards actually having some sort of hearing or at least being introduced in the House. If and when that happens, if it looks there is support for a bill, the Senate will have to come back and be involved. This could take a couple of days, at least, to get done.
It's interesting to note that they can't meet on Sundays or holidays. But, a special session could last at least five days, which would take us to Saturday, just a few days before Christmas Eve.