What Maguire describes as "a friendly lawsuit" was filed Wednesday in Franklin Circuit Court naming state Treasurer Jonathan Miller and Secretary of Finance John Farris as defendants. They are named as defendants because of their constitutional duty to issue Maguire's paycheck.
The lawsuit alleges that Fletcher's partial veto of the law is a violation of the Kentucky and U.S. constitutions. It asks in Maguire's monthly salary to be raised from $1,802.10 to $10,146.
Maguire is drawing a pension of about $100,000 a year based on his 23 years of service as a judge. Under the double-dipping law, his pension is deducted from his salary as a family court judge, meaning he is actually earning only $21,625 for his work in that position. Other circuit judges in the state make $121,752 annually.
Doing it for future judges
"I'm sure people will feel like I'm money grubbing," Maguire said. "Others feel like, 'Wait a minute. People retire then go back to work all the time.'"
Of course, the full salary will be nice if the lawsuit goes in his favor, Maguire said, but he's also doing it for future judges.
"It will affect people in the future," he said. "It's also important to tie up the loose ends."
Maguire said it's not an adversarial suit: He's only asking the court to resolve any legal issues. He points out he could take any other job outside of judge and still collect both a salary and pension.
"That's the kind of inconsistency which I hope will be resolved in my favor," Maguire said. "I feel badly that some other people did not run or withdrew because this bill was passed. I think it just ought to be resolved. It's a question of law, and an issue of fairness."
Two other retired judges were running for another judgeship in the state when the law was passed. One withdrew because of the law and the other was defeated.
More older people are working longer and taking second careers and Maguire said he doesn't want to see them penalized for it.
"That just doesn't ring right," he said. "I'm thinking I'm the only person standing to challenge the thing because I'm the only person with any material interest in it."
If the suit does not go his way, Maguire said it will not affect how he performs on the bench.