Politics

Gov. Matt Bevin has asked the state Supreme Court to not expedite an appeal of a ruling that blocked his overhaul of the University of Louisville Board of Trustees. Attorney General Andy Beshear requested that the case be fast-tracked to the high court in order for a quick resolution.

In a motion filed with the Kentucky Supreme Court, Bevin’s office said that there is no “good cause for advancement.”

“[W]hen the General Assembly convenes next month, it will either ratify the Governor’s temporary interim reorganization of the University of Louisville Board of Trustees, or it will not. Either way, this case will be rendered moot…” Bevin’s motion read.

In September, Franklin Circuit Court Judge Philip Shepherd ruled that Bevin didn’t have the authority to abolish U of L’s board and then reinstate it with all new members.

Bevin appealed the decision, sending the case to the Kentucky Court of Appeals. He has repeatedly questioned Shepherd’s motives and reasoning in the ruling, calling him a “political hack” on a radio show last month.

Beshear, who sued Bevin for overhauling the U of L board, asked that the case go straight to the Kentucky Supreme Court. He argued that the case needs to be resolved because Bevin has refused to fill vacancies on the board while the case is on appeal.

Beshear also cited concerns that U of L could lose its accreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools for “undue political influence.”

Bevin’s office accused Beshear of sensationalizing the case in an attempt to score political points.

“The Attorney General […] has myopically advocated that the University should lose its accreditation due to the reorganization of its Board, but the evidence in the record overwhelmingly shows that its accreditation is not in jeopardy,” Bevin said.

The General Assembly will have the opportunity to ratify Bevin’s executive order that overhauled the U of L board when the legislature reconvenes in January.

Ryland Barton is the Capitol bureau chief for Kentucky Public Radio.