Sheriff John Kirk courtesy Martin County Sheriff's Office/Facebook and wkyt.com

Martin County in eastern Kentucky is in something of a fiscal crisis. According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, County Sheriff John Kirk hasn’t received promised funds needed to provide law enforcement services.

A Kentucky sheriff has told the local fiscal court he is suspending all law enforcement activities because of lack of funding.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports , Martin County Sheriff John Kirk took the stage without invitation at a fiscal court meeting Monday. Kirk said his office is still owed a $75,000 payment due in January. He also complained that new obligations placed on his office will add $99,000 to his annual expenditures.

The situation’s gotten so bad that Sheriff Kirk has suspended most law enforcement activity. He posted this message to the citizens of Martin County on his Facebook page:

This may seem like an isolated case of bad fiscal management coming home to roost. But Martin County is a canary in an Eastern Kentucky coal mine.

fiscally distressed states law enforcement
courtesy Mercatus Center

As the Mercatus Center detailed last year, Kentucky isn’t even the state in the worst financial condition.

The bottom five states in terms of fiscal solvency are Kentucky (#46), Massachusetts (#47), New Jersey (#48), Connecticut (#49), and Illinois (#50).

Will we see similar law enforcement cuts in some of these other fiscally mismanaged states? That isn’t clear. But Sheriff Kirk’s suggestion — “FOLKS, LOCK YOUR DOORS, LOAD YOUR GUNS AND GET YOU A BARKING, BITING DOG” — seems like sound advice no matter how well your state’s affairs have been managed. You are your own first responder…more so in some states than in others.

173 COMMENTS

    • State cops will say the same. It takes them a whole lot longer to get to you than the sheriff even if it is a department of one.

      • There is a large KSP post in the next county. Martin County also has 5 elected constables who do not draw a salary, but are paid for actual work done such as transporting prisoners or serving papers.

      • What happens when being behind Locked Closed Doors of your House is no longer enough. And your Neighbor decides that his Property Line is part of that Secured Location. And your the one that Accidentally crosses that Boundary by simply Walking your Dog. Or the School Bus Stop borders His Property Line. Are you that Stupid…

        • Or the sun goes supernova and we all burn up. Or the seas rise 250 feet or we all drown. Or a pandemic wipes out everybody. Or North Korea nukes San Francisco (okay, that last one isn’t too bad).

        • Lolsy, you must be an awful neighbor. None of my neighbors would shoot if I walked on their lawn. Does your dog poop on their lawn? Do you clean it up? Get to know them. They may even help you someday. Sit on your porch or front stoop….wave at them.

        • @ Ralph
          Or heavens forbid, all of that happens, the end of the world, no water, famine….electrical grid failure, San Francisco eats a DPRK nuke…oh wait, we decided that was a good thing, but anyway, all bad shit happens, and we RUN OUT OF WEED!

        • Lolsy lives in the ‘burbs where if police response time is longer than 15 min you complain… as opposed to the country where it takes the cops 45+ minutes just to drive to you….

        • Yes, but you have local police departments to respond to a 911 call. Rural KY? Not so much. Once again, you have no idea what it means.

          (besides, police are just to enforce the law and have no duty to protect any individual. Been decided by the supreme court, twice)

        • Rural counties don’t *have* police, numbskull. The Sheriff’s Department has to act as law enforcement as well as securing the county courthouse and providing service of legal papers (that and running the jail is basically *all* the Sherrif’s Dept does in most urban areas….)

        • So you choose to live where nobody can get to you! i.e. the Local Police, Fire Department, Rescue Services. Probably not even enough space to land a Helicopter too…

        • Sadly right. To protect and serve has a whole different meaning now days. Gun rights are in jeopardy in everyway possible. Your dog Bites someone they put it down. Bottom line is we all stand our ground and let the chips fall where they do or let the criminals win. I’ll let the chips fall….

        • Yes, and in your area, you have city police, county sheriffs, local constables, US park police, uniformed secret service and state police.

          You have no clue about what it’s like in the country or in cities that don’t have so many agencies crawling over each other. I suggest you go out past Winchester to see what it’s like. And don’t worry about me, I will properly handle any threat that comes my way.

        • I have! And virtually every City or County in Virginia has a Sheriff’s Department. Some even have Marshall’s or a State Police Barracks…

        • Yes, and they can commonly take ~45min or more to respond to a 911 call. What do you do in that 45 minutes?

        • You don’t get it. The average time for LE to respond to a problem is 20 minutes, and that’s on a good day. Not every county has the tax revenues of Alexandria, Fairfax, Loudoun and Fauquier counties do, so the response times will be higher. Anyone who lives in the less than elite counties need to heed the advice of this sheriff. Like the sign in some places says “If they’re found here tonight, they won’t ever be found again”. There are many mountains and hollows west of you.

        • There are Inaccessible Hollow’s in Alexandria, Virginia too. The “Del Ray” area has lots of $300-K homes but also some on the Most Dangerous Roads to drive on…

        • Must have been real scary for you to venture out past Leesburg. Stay in your police city and go get another latte. You have no concept of reality outside your metrosexual area.

        • From 1956 to 1961, I lived in Indonesia when “Sukarno” was it’s Dictator. He was quite innovate in knowing how to not only Terrorizing the Indonesian People, but Foreign Diplomats assigned to Indonesia as well. But he specialty in showing it was Weekly Public Executions of Innocent Indonesian who he perceived as a threat…

        • Lolsy doesn’t have any experience in the real world. Even in a big city, hell, especially a big city, police response time can be in excess of 20minuets. He likely lives in one of those Lilly liberal rich burbs where police respond in under 5 because the most they do is issue jay walking tickets.

        • I use to live in Indonesia in the 1950’s as a US Diplomatic Service BRAT. There were Government Executions just across the Diplomatic Residential District every week. I lived there for almost 5 years…

        • That book would still be more real then your fake tour in Indonesia and your foolish knowledge of emergency response times.

        • Ok? Who gives a shit about palin? Here’s a clue, go to any random spot in any major American city that isn’t a burb, get into some shit and call for an emergency service. Then time how long it takes and if your still alive, continue to mock how dumb country people are for not living in a big city.

        • @Lolsy,
          The choice up to you really! You can be the totally naieve little girl believing in such fantasies that 911 will always ride to your rescue to protect you in time. Or finally take responsibility as an adult for your own safety! Let me give you a real case! In 1975 my housing unit was broken into by a man intending to rape and rob my wife while I was on duty on my sub. He knocked her down, but for whatever reason, he didn’t rape her! He ultimately left without stealing or doing anything else. The neighbor in the duplex heard her screams and did nothing! Your fucking police and sheriff did not arrive for nearly 20 minutes after they were called. I can certainly guarantee that within that time, you will be raped and murdered. You won’t even have a chance to dial! And in the months following we were stalked, received continuous death threats and saw a man watching our house from the woods behind. Base security NEVER caught him when they did manage to get there because they refused to follow into the woods! The sheriff told me to shoot to kill, and make sure the body was inside. They would come, bag and tag, and take it away! NO questions would be asked! I patrolled those woods with dog and shotgun ready to kill every chance I got! And I would gladly have killed! Your life means nothing to the police or evidently you since you fear the repercussions of what may happen.

        • Lolsy a couple years back here in Colorado we had a guy who ate edible pot freak out. His wife called 911 and she was talking with the operator for 14 minutes until her drug crazed husband shot and killed her. This didn’t happen in an isolated area, it happened in Denver 2 miles from a police station. The police were supposedly on there way. You can keep believing the police are going to save you, most of us here live in the real world. The guys on farms and ranches in areas of the west often have response times of over an hour. They can only rely on themselves.

    • Inciting violence? It’s called protecting yourself instead of always expecting someone else to do it for you. When they do try to do their job, seems like someone always wants to prosecute em anyway!

    • Was funding promised? If it was where is it, seemingly lost in transit. If delivered as supposedly promised, seems as if the sheriff is or might be the problem.

    • Lolsy,

      This sheriff is not alone. There are many law enforcement agencies that have seen significantly smaller budgets because of poor decisions made by the democommies. The chief of police for the city of Detroit has told citizens to buy a gun to protect themselves and to shoot any attackers. This the real truth you are being shielded from by your media propaganda puppets.

      There are also many police departments around the country who are refusing to enforce STUPID, draconian gun laws enacted by their ignorant, gun grabbing law makers. (Illinois and Washington state to name a few)

      • You live in your community! Then it’s up to you to make sure that the Local Sheriff Department is properly funded. Even if it mean paying more Taxes. If not, let the Blood Bath Begin, and maybe if you’re really lucky, you won’t be one of the victims…

        • @ Lolsy
          Oh come on, if we can’t rip on a trolls English skills, what do we have, substance? Don’t be such a kill-joy

        • And everyone including yourself speaks and writes in Perfect English. What are the Odds that anyone on any blog site speaks and writes in Perfect English. I suspect that doesn’t even include YOU…

      • Click on the map, you’ll go to the page with the story, including two such maps with legends.
        If you’re using your phone (I don’t do email on my phone, so I’m sort of guessing here) try tapping on the map, it might take you to the relevant page.

    • Idiot, wait till it comes to your door……… If you live close to me, don’t ask me to help you, socialists fool.

    • He never incited violence in any form. He simply stated that citizens are their own first response in the event of an attack on themselves and their families. Quit being such a Schumer.

    • well we have to move out here to get away from people like you lolsey. While there are some drawbacks, such as limited services or extended times on them, the reality of everyday living in close proximity to people such as yourself means such sacrifices are worth it. Also, some people just enjoy quiet solitary living and don’t think having basic skills such as first aid, basic marksmanship, and rudimentary repair skills is such a steep price for it. Matter of fact, this may blow your mind so sit down, some people ENJOY such self sufficiency in a sort of Stoic philosophical/practical sense. It can be a lot to absorb, I know brother.

      • I think self sufficiency is a new “trigger”, better be careful, the PC police will be knockin on the door! Agreed, the father away from people like that, quality of life goes way up.

    • Until you know what you are talking about, SHUT THE HELL UP!!!! You obviously do not now nor have you ever worked in LE…..not every place has a police department filled with personnel just down the block!!! How would you propose to run a department with more officers and NO MONEY??? No way I’d do that job without getting paid for it. And until you’ve lived in the hills and rural areas of Kentucky, keep you mouth shut. I don’t live in a rural area today but I grew up in one, and I still wouldn’t leave myself unprotected…That’s why most people I know have firearms at home and Concealed Carry when they aren’t at home….. God bless our LE but they simply can’t be everywhere….

    • Wow…inciting violence…really? It’s called “self preservation”. I’ll bet you’re not even a 2nd Amendment supporter, right? So you’re only here to troll. Go back under your bridge.

  1. Interesting. Massachusetts, New Jersey, Illinois, Connecticut. All hitting the financial bottom of the barrel. All run by Democrats. And all gun-grabber enclaves. Correlation not equaling causation and all, but it does make you wonder….

      • Ever wonder why the places with the worst violent crime, are the ones with the most restrictive gun laws? Also, ever see any gang bangers show up at those stupid buy-backs?

      • Yeah… Illinois is a fiscal shit show right now. But hey, JB the Hutt found time to give raises to his union lackeys and drive gun stores out of business. I say it’s time for everybody outside Crook County to just declare themselves to be the state of West Illinois and then tell the scumbags in Crook County to say when.

      • Agreed!!! I too live in Illinois. Chicago to be exact. But I will be leaving for rural KY this year. I’ve had it… I have no problem defending myself or my loved ones. After all, I’m no lolsy… I have a pair…

        • NO!!! He needs to wait and buy it in Kentucky where he can get what he wants without jumping through 10,000 hoops for the socialistic government of Illinois.

    • And Ky is 5th from the bottom financially because of years and years of democratic fiscal abuse, even borrowing money from the Ky teachers retirement system to fund other pet projects with no intent whatsoever for repayment. Dems ruined the state.

        • Mitch McConnell is the Senior Member of the US Senate and from Kentucky! What infux of Financial Prosperity has he brought to Kentucky to remedy Kentucky’s financial woes…

        • The question is, who controlled it before 2012??? Decades of mismanagement doesn’t get fixed in 6 years.

        • Past Tense! What has happened since before 3 January 2019 and January 2012 under Republican Control of Both the US House and the US Senate. Even with Donald Trump as President, the US House under Paul Ryan couldn’t pass a Single Bill without Democratic help…

        • pork barrel politics are a cancer and the source of a shit load of corruption. The Fed has little to do with state wealth, and even when bacon gets brought in some Fed infrastructure project is only going to keep jobs up for a little amount of time. Your points are non-points

        • So if Senator Mitch McConnell decided to Pass a Senate Bill revitalizing Kentucky’s economy, the Good People of Kentucky would naturally refuse the offer!/?

        • Mitch McConnell has been US Senate Leader since 2014, this 2019. So from 2014 to 2019, Mitch McConnell could have done something to stimulate the Economy of the State in which he ran his election to the US Senate from…

        • In 2018, the Republican controlled Kentucky House and Senate passed a pension reform bill to try and fix the bankrupt Kentucky Pension system. It was universally opposed by the Teacher’s Union and various Democrat officials. These Democrats took the new law to the courts and it was overturned by the KY Supreme Court. So the teachers still have a bankrupt system and the tax payers are still on the hook.

  2. Could this impact the ability of paramedics responding to the aftermath of a defensive gun use? I ask because the defender may in need of medical assistance due to injury due to assailant and/or stress induced heart attack following the incident.

  3. I’ve always said, “We are historians and janitors. We write down what happened and clean up the mess.” (As L.E.O.) You are responsible for your own personal safety.

    • Friend had a Dobbie , we came home after partying one night and found a wild ass dog, a broken door, broken bathroom window, two fingers and blood galore. And don’t sell them Plott hounds short, two of the meanest dogs I’ve owned had Plott in them Pitbull Plott cross , Superdogs. Halo ripped the screen from the window and jumped out the upstairs bedroom to get at someone who pulled up in my driveway and got noisey with me. Superdogs…. Gone but not forgotten, THANK YOU for your service. Stump n Hallo ,you betcha. Damn tears

      • I think Plotts are the right mix of aggression and restraint.

        Mixed with Pit I figure that goes one of two ways. The Plott’s stubbornness mixed with Pitty aggression makes the dog uncontrollable or, the opposite, Pitty responsiveness mixed with Plott tenacity.

        The latter would be one of the best guard dogs you could get.

        • Dead, , couldn’t figure it out, I think cancer. Was fat, two weeks later quit eating and died, wasn’t parvo . I’m down to a cat , shtf for me, the last two years. Wife filed DV, jail, she left, got drunk and wrecked the pickup big time, lost an eye, dogs died, then my house burnt down and I had to move from my country paradise of 25 years to a hotel waiting on a low rent. LOL support group,,, most all my guns burnt up, I’m wearing thrift shop, good will clothes. … It was a nice pickup 1988, cammed out 350 Sierra show room clean, took that sucker and rolled it in a river , smashed her flat, I have no clue how I survived, that’s why I can roll with the punches. And all of that, I just want my dogs back, how bout that?

        • Shit, sorry to hear that.

          “And all of that, I just want my dogs back, how bout that?”

          Fair enough.

        • Damn, possum. Out a tune to that and you’d have a grammy winning country song.

          Cheer up. I don’t see how things could get any worse from here.

  4. Running a Sheriff’s office is expensive when you start adding up all the things needed.

    Just vehicles alone is huge. Add lights and radio’s, other equipment, gas and oil changes. Plain old fashion maintenance and the number of miles driven.

    Huge expenses before salary is even discussed for a Deputy. Some things can be mitigated with State and Federal grants….asset seizure and forfeiture (hate this but some departments do it)

    just sayin…stuff adds up.

  5. We liked our federal system and even more differentiation inside states… but there are some pretty big drawbacks to having redundant police services. There are a lot of places that get by fine with State Police coverage only. If the county is so broke maybe that is the best option.

    So lock your doors and load your guns? Sure. But the philosophy behind that- namely, that law enforcement might not be able to help you in time- exists regardless of whether there’s a deputy 10 minutes away or a statie 20 minutes away.

    • You might be surprised to find that while the Sheriff and his deputies have law enforcement authority, they have no general requirement to provide law enforcement to the county.

      Just as in every other state, the duties of the Sheriff are spelled out in state law.

      In Kentucky, those duties include collecting property taxes, providing security for the courts, serving warrants and legal papers, inspecting vehicles coming from out of state before being registered, and a few other functions BUT NOT law enforcement. County Sheriffs may conduct law enforcement if they want to, but the DUTY of law enforcement outside incorporated cities lies with the state police not the County Sheriff’s office.

      • We also have elected constables who could provide many of those services on a fee basis, since they do not draw a salary. Martin County has 5 elected constables. These constables provide their own equipment.

  6. If you read the linked news story you see the problem has been building around coal country for a while. With coal on a sharp decline the taxes on coal have been drying up. Leaving counties long dependent on coal in a tough spot. Either raise other taxes or cut services. Or ignore it and pretend everything is fine until your term of office is up, leaving the disaster for the next guy to deal with. Well, that time has passed and those”next guys” are hitting the bottom of cash pile.

    So decisions must be made. Either move the tax burden to what’s left or come up with another plan.

    Just don’t put faith in coal. Natural gas is cheaper to buy and to use and the USA has developed incredible amounts of it.

    As for protecting myself, been doing that since old enough to buy guns myself. So no worries there.

  7. Klamath Falls Herald and News: Tuesday, March 12, 2013 /Letters To The Editor

    Private citizens remain on their own in U.S.

    I read Chiloquin Mayor Patricia Twamley’s March 6 Herald and News letter, “Make Klamath a safer place for all of us.” It ended with this final sentence: “Please speak up. You can help make it safer for all of us and our children.”

    The saying, “silence is consent,” constrains me to speak up, again!

    Let me revisit the issue of women’s safety. Paxton Quigley’s latest book, “Armed and Female: Taking Control”(2010), is a revised edition of her 1989 original by the same title; the
sequel mentioned here is more comprehensive and current. It provides valuable safety tips for women. To learn more, simply access paxtonquigley.com.

    Also, on the same issue of personal safety and security, I have formerly shared my sentiments alluding to “Dial 911 and Die!” via jpfo.org. This special report explodes the myths about 911, police protection
and restraining orders.

    Finally, “Nobody ever Raped a .38!” on thetruthaboutguns.com, brings to mind Jack Burton’s excellent commetary, “Smith and Wesson Military and Police
Revolver: A Gun’s Autobiography.” This is a moral history lesson on the venerable Smith and Wesson Model 10 (K-Frame)
.38 special military and police revolver. This formerly was the
quintessential police service sidearm of not only American law
enforcement, but Canada, Mexico and other countries, not
to mention the military. This fine commentary remains archived
and can be read via Google.

    With fiscal attrition and cutbacks here in Southern Oregon
and Northern California, loss of timber funds, shrinking budgets, layoffs, etc. — the private citizen remains basically on their own.
Police and sheriff’s resources continue to be spread thin. You are your first line of defense.

    James A. Farmer, Ashland
    Now a resident of Merrill, Oregon (Klamath County)

    • Well what you say makes sense, but I still don’t like you because you called possums vermin. Dude give us a break, it ain’t easy out here , yah know

  8. I once reported two drunk men firing a weapon on the rural road next to my house at someone up the hill. This was around 6:00 p.m.. At 9:00 p.m., two state police cars rolled into my yard. I will let Lolsy do the math on that one.

  9. If you take this matter seriously, buy some used body armour, get some high quality rechargeable 1000 lumen flashlights, portable spotlights, 12 guage pump shotgun with #4 buckshot, take a self defense course, form a neighborhood watch group with cb radios or other communications so you can call each other for help, set up a base station in one home so someone can keep track of everyone’s whereabouts, set up a way to identify each other especially at night, reflective vest?. One last thing when it becomes absolutely necessary to use deadly force, use it without hesitation, hesitation will get you and others killed. If you use deadly force don’t talk to the police without your attorney present, never. Just a few suggestions, I’m sure others can add additional ones.

    • There’s nothing wrong or unconstitutional about forming an impromptu militia to defend ones area. It’s how this country functioned for a very long time. And criminals will likely fear a militia more then the police. And for good reason.

  10. As a former corporate capitol and operating budget manager, every municipality and county commissioners should be appropriately trained in budget “creation”, cost containment, and budget management. Every budget cycle, the budget should be “zero based budgeting” in order to identify and expose corrupt budgeted items. And, each department head should be held accountable and prove the need for what they request. The problem with “carry over” monies from prior budget cycles is that it opens the door for corruption and misappropriation of funds.

  11. I guess this does not bode well for the gun hating “just dial 911″ and hope they leave you alone crowd. Here in Illinois a lot of resources are being devoted to sanctuary cities which release violent criminals back into the communities rather then let ICE have them per federal law. A republican won”t even try to run for mayor of Chicago anymore due to the welfare breeders controlling the show. As mentioned in the article what is happening in Kentucky will be common place across the country before long.

  12. As someone who has invested in muni bonds for a couple of decades now, this is the evidence of a problem that has been brewing since the late 90’s. Before you invest in the debt of a state, county or city, it is in your best interest to do some homework into their finances. I’ve done this for 20-some years now.

    In the late 90’s, when the economy was on a tear, it seemed as tho many of the government employee unions went on a spree of asking for big increases in benefits – especially health care and pension guarantees – for their employees. Police, fire, EMS and other state and local level government employees went into budget meetings with large requests – and often got what they asked for, mostly because it helped the politicians who gave away such promises get re-elected, and it cost these pols little at that time.

    That bill would come due later. That “later” is increasingly “now.”

    In some areas of the country, (here in WY and there in KY, the coal severance tax issue looms large), the tax base is changing or eroding. In some communities, they’re seeing population and business outflows, so their ad valorem tax base is eroding. In others, it’s retail sales taxes being halved due to Amazon taking out so many brick-n-mortar stores.

    Regardless of what has happened to local and state tax revenues, there’s one issue that remains constant across most all states: the government employee pension guarantees are starting to drain state operating budgets as the pensions’ investment gains under-perform their 7%+ targets, the Fed keeps Treasury yields low and no one wants to touch RMBS paper so aggressively again. In several states now, the pension funds are starting to have to ask for infusions of cash from the state general funds.

    You saw the prototype of these issues come to the fore in Detroit’s bankruptcy – the bankruptcy filing put the issues on the table, for all the world to see. It pitted the retired government employees’ pensions against the current government employees paychecks. No one won in that match – the retirees took a hit, and the current employees’ retirement plan is a mere shadow of what the currently retired employees were promised. Through it all, the elites in Detroit made sure that their $2 billion collection of art owned by “the public” was off-limits from consideration of how to balance their budget.

    There is a huge reckoning coming in government services all over the country, and only a few states will escape this reckoning – maybe only five. I judge those five to be Alaska, Wyoming, North & South Dakota and maybe Utah. That’s it. Everyone else is going to see some real pain to varying degrees. Kentucky is going to feel pain to a major degree, as will Illinois, Rhode Island, New Jersey, etc. Law enforcement and fire services are going to have to take some major cuts in the future, because the budgets for their benefits and salaries are unsustainable on the tax revenues these states/counties/cities have.

    • Well South Dakota will still have to deal with that crappy weather.

      At this point I think you’d have to be insane to invest in any sort of government debt anywhere on earth. Pretty much everywhere on earth politicians have been spending like a college freshman with Daddy’s credit card.

    • Dyseptic Gunsmith,

      All of those city, county, and state governments would be swimming in cash if they ended all of their entitlement programs.

      And this is how it all boils down: city, county, and state governments would rather see your home burn to the ground and your family robbed, beaten, raped, and/or murdered before ending their entitlement programs and losing those votes.

      Think about just how sick and evil that is. Governments take money away from responsible, working people (via taxes); then cut fire services for them so that their homes will burn to the ground if they catch fire; and finally cut police services for them so that their families are robbed, beaten, raped, and/or murdered — all to ensure that those same governments can continue to give money away to people who are irresponsible and refuse to work.

      • u_s, the problem here is that it’s really hard to get capitalists into ‘public service’, which leads to the default position of practically everybody in government being either socialist or full blown communists. Lenin was right when he said that the capitalists would sell them the rope to hang them with.

      • It is true – giving out money to deadbeats is a huge problem at the federal, state and local levels.

        The liabilities of the pension promises, however, are huge – and until recent changes in the GASB (Government Accounting Standards Board) recommendations on how to account for pension liabilities, were largely unknown and unappreciated. Most all state employee pensions are hugely under-funded by the employees contributing to them – ie, these pensions make promises far, far outstripping what the employees are paying into them.

        Another huge problem for pensions is that their investment returns have been abysmal for the last 10 years – some of them are regulated to allow investment in only AA (or better) rated government debt. Well, AA or AAA paper has been paying very scant returns over inflation for the last 10 years, thanks to the Fed’s agenda of ZIRP. This has blown a huge hole in future asset projections for these funds.

        The important thing here is: social welfare spending can be cut. It’s a gift from the taxpayer to the deadbeats. Pensions are a contractual promise – they’re not so easily cut.

        • They could do what Florida did recently and have everyone in the state system contribute 3% into the Florida retirement system. However that may not work as well for other states that don’t have the tourist economy Florida does.

      • In Kentucky, outside the cities, your fire protection is provided by volunteer departments supported by a line item on the property tax bill. Each volunteer fire district has it’s own taxing authority.

        EMT service in my county is provided by a private company. It used to be owned by the two hospitals, not sure if it still is or not.

    • A well written and well researched discussion of a problem that’s been in the works for a long time.

      Truth be told however, that 7% or more target return was always unrealistic over the long term. Historically 4% was a fairly safe bet. Nearly doubling, doubling or more than doubling 4% was always a stupid thing to do in the long term.

    • What no Illinois? I could see the whole darn state becoming the next Detroit at some level. They’re trying to pass a lot of insane gun control right now too.

      • Not a deliberate oversight – I just slipped up.

        Yes, Illinois is high on the list of states to start defaulting. Their paper is rated just above junk. Cook County is even worse.

        • Illinois is in a downward spiral into the abyss and there is really no hope at this point for the state as the ‘commie’crats now have a stranglehold on the state government and have fully entrenched themselves…it probably won’t be long before southern Illinois sheriff departments will be telling their residents they are on their own for their own personal protection as the southern Illinois counties are pretty much in the same boat as their rural Kentucky counterparts…..stay safe out there.

    • Bad advice. Moving a body or collecting spent shells can easily be construed as tampering with a crime scene, and could cause felony charges to be brought against the shooter.
      Just make sure there is a threat prior to pulling the trigger.

  13. And everyone screams gun control. Take away their guns. Like several of you have said as in the artical. There will be more States in this situation soon enough. Keep your guns close and family closer. Anyone who believes in our 2nd Amendment knows the time is close. Guns up!!!!

  14. Interesting sidebar, according to the chart, numbers 2, 3 and 4 of the most fiscally solvent states in the country have no individual state income tax.

  15. I live in a county and township with some of the highest per-capita income levels in the United States outside of Silicon Valley, Los Angeles basin, and New York City. I am only a 10 minute drive (in light traffic) to the center of a city which has a population over 120,000 and a world-class university. And yet we have no county Sheriff coverage overnight, just state police coverage from the nearest post which is 35 miles away. Guess what? Nothing significant ever happens. In the last two years we had one armed home-invasion and probably one burglary as well. Maybe some teenager turfed someone’s yard. Oh, and people sometimes hit deer with their cars.

    In other words it isn’t the end of the world when all you have is state police coverage. Of course that is a lot easier to say and accept when you have your choice of pump-action shotgun, semi-auto handgun, revolver, and semi-auto rifle available for self-defense at home. (And I have a barking dog as well!)

  16. I have mentioned on previous posts on this website: one reason that we still NEED our right to keep and bear arms is for the times when law enforcement fails to enforce the law (lacking resources in this particular case).

  17. Cop coverage isn’t a problem here(southern Cook co.) Local,county,Forest Preserve idiot’s,township and state po-leece. And “other’s”. Too damn many😡

    • The “tree police” as I call them, are just Sheriff Tom Dart’s voting and patronage block…. Tits on a bull….

    • As I recall you Drank It all by yourself too. You said it reminded you of the Fountain of “Golden Elixir” while in the Boy’s Locker Room…

  18. I live in KY, we are now $54 BILLION in debt thanks to Steve “I know how to buy votes” Beshear so he could allow the government workers unions could rack up retirement benefits so large they will be making more retired than before they retired. The New REPUBLICAN governor Matt Bevin has been fighting for over a year to get it under control any Andy Beshear, the GOVERNORS SON and Attorney General, guess how he got his job, has been standing in his way. The Liberals have been in control of the cities since the 40s and we are a third rate state because of them.

  19. I thought everone in Kentucky already owned those things. Average police response time where I live is over 10 minutes during business hours, they only keep 2 deputies on duty at night with 1 state trooper covering a 3 county area during night shift.

  20. I’m not sure that the Mercatus Center’s data are accurate, although the top five and the bottom five, including KY, probably are OK.

    I suspect that a few, particularly West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, recently have either taken measures to get out of debt and/or have newly exploited mineral resources that will provide potentially big, long term cash infusions (Marcellus, Utica, and other unconventional petroleum plays). As a result these states are probably better off than the Mercatus analysis indicates. These revenue streams can be further enhanced by developing related industry (ethane storage, crackers, and related businesses). Mercatus doesn’t provide enough analytical detail to tell if they are really up to date.

    Response time, even in cities, is generally only sufficient to have someone on hand to clean up the mess and write a police report, so the sheriff’s advice is generally good except perhaps the biting dog, that can be a big liability.

  21. I don’t recall any California county sheriff or city police chief who said the residence should get a gun when bankruptcy was filed, by the city or county. And Law enforcement services were cut in Stockton, San Jose, and San Bernardino.
    That’s the difference in mind set between the Left coast and “fly over” country. I move away from California a very, very long time ago. And I’m glad I did. Most California voters don’t support civil rights.

  22. In Montana we have a lot of “rural areas” and sometimes they simply can’t get there in any reasonable time due to location and weather. That’s why most people have guns and dogs and probably know first aid as well. Sometimes you just can’t figure on help and you have to deal with it yourself.

    • Unfortunately I now live in Colorado Springs, CO and with a population of over 600k it takes the cops hours to respond to a 911 call. Can’t count on the police at all.

  23. ‘Lock your doors, load your guns and get…a barking, biting dog’
    And stop paying your taxes, since your locked doors, loaded guns and barking, biting dog are the only thing between you and any deadly criminals.
    The police don’t give a hoot and are a waste of taxpayer money.
    They will not and are not required by law to save your arst and are more likely to be drinking on duty & shooting a fellow officer dead while playing Russian roulette (Google it), if not shooting innocent citizens and their dogs (Google that too) dead.

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