The Kentucky House has approved legislation intended to help citizens of the state better understand how to save and use their money.
Western Kentucky Representative Jim Glenn is the sponsor of the bill which would form the Kentucky Financial Literacy Commission. The bill cleared the House last week and is now before senators.
Glenn, a professor at Owensboro Community and Technical College, says he’s been advising young people about saving money for decades. He believes this effort could teach people of all ages. “It helps the working class people. It helps senior citizens. It helps parents and it helps young students, four basic groups. So, they are gonna put together programs, publications, things that are gonna help people increase their core knowledge of financial literacy,” said Glenn. Glenn says the kind of advice he's offered to students includes such recommendations as skipping a few soft drinks a week and putting that money into savings. He argues just such a simple process can help instill stronger financial literacy. He says a change in mindset regarding saving money came some 90 years ago. “We moved roughly in the 1920’s from a savings society to a consumer society, which we started using credit cards and things of that general nature.” What we’re trying to do now is make a subtle change back in the other direction,” added Glenn. Glenn also believes young people need advice on saving for retirement. The Owensboro lawmaker says, as company-supported pensions decline, individuals need to be responsible for putting aside their own money. “That’s the core change that’s happened in our society. So, you work for a fast food outlet, you have to have a 401-k. Most places are like that right now. So, you have to be conscious of how you save your money,” said Glenn.