Personnel Cabinet

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, January 14, 2009  
Contact Information:  Crystal Pryor

Kentucky Personnel Cabinet
Office of the Secretary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                              Contact: Crystal Pryor

Kentucky Employee Suggestion System
Saves the State Over $1.4 Million

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Jan. 14, 2009) – Thirty-nine state employees were recognized
today for budget friendly ideas that saved the state $1,403,4331. These employees were recognized at the Governor’s Mansion during the Personnel Cabinet’s 29th Employee Suggestion System Awards Ceremony hosted by First Lady Jane Beshear and Personnel Cabinet Secretary Nikki Jackson.

“Innovative employee ideas are critical to government improvement,” said First Lady Jane Beshear. “These employee suggestions are helping the state weather the current economic storm by improving efficiency and productivity within state agencies. ”

The commonwealth provided cash awards and certificates for implementing employee ideas that resulted in improved efficiency in operations, cost reduction, cost avoidance, improved public relations, enhanced on-the-job safety or increased state revenues.

Employees whose suggestions resulted in the highest first-year savings are:

  • John Love, Department of Insurance, suggested that the Kentucky Department of Insurance request specific information from all surplus lines carriers of records regarding their written business in Kentucky in order to pursue payment of all delinquent taxes by noncompliant brokers, whether licensed or unlicensed, and regardless of domicile. This suggestion generated revenue the first year in the amount of $518,076.
  • Walt Gaffield, Personnel Cabinet, suggested that the Personnel Cabinet end the practice of purchasing self-insured workers’ compensation program excess risk insurance because there is little likelihood the commonwealth would ever collect an insurance payment. This excess insurance has never been used and is not projected by claim reserves or claim trends to ever be used. The suggestion resulted in a first-year savings of $475,000.
  • Robert Underhill, Office of Administration & Technology Services, Cabinet
    for Health and Family Services, suggested combining 160 janitorial contracts
    for individual buildings into groups that are in close proximity. This suggestion
    resulted in a first-year savings of $297,155.

These three employees were each awarded $2,500. The total cash awards received by all 39 state employees’ suggestions totaled $19,764.

The Employee Suggestion System was established in 1981. Since its inception, the
commonwealth has realized a total of more than $38 million in first-year savings. Cash awards are paid by the cabinets realizing the savings from the suggestions and may range from a minimum of $100 to 10 percent of the first-year savings, up to a maximum of $2,500. Awards of $100 may be given for ideas that are adopted but have intangible savings.

For more information on the Employee Suggestion System, visit

1This figure represents the estimated saving during the suggestions’ first year of implementation.