Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear

Politics
3:04 pm
Wed January 23, 2013

Beshear Supports Local Option Sales Tax

Steve Beshear
Credit Kentucky Governor's Office

Proponents of a local option sales tax have gained big ally in their legislative fight: Gov. Steve Beshear. 

The local option sales tax would allow cities to levy an additional tax on top of the state’s current six percent sales tax for specific projects, if local voters approved the new tax.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Lexington Mayor Jim Gray are the chief advocates pushing the idea, arguing their cities would use the extra revenue for infrastructure projects.

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Politics
11:17 am
Fri January 11, 2013

Kentucky Legislative Leaders Undecided On Whether to Delay Redistricting

Kentucky legislative districts approved in 2002.
Credit Legislative Research Commission

Kentucky legislative leaders say they haven't responded yet to Gov. Steve Beshear’s request to delay General Assembly redistricting in the 2013 session.

Senate President Robert Stivers says his leadership team has not yet decided on a response and that many in his chamber are conflicted on when to address redistricting.

“And we all have varying opinions on what needs to be done and when it needs to be done and one thing I don’t think we need to do is a special session,” he says.

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Politics
5:20 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Education Week Ranks Kentucky in its Top 10

Last year, Kentucky was 14th in the nation; In 2010 it was 34th, according to the report.
Courtesy of Education Week

Education Week, a national publication dedicated to education issues, has ranked Kentucky in the top ten on its annual Quality Counts report measuring education policy and achievement indicators.

The improvement in ranking was praised Thursday by Gov. Steve Beshear and Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday who credits the ranking in part to Senate Bill 1 and the state’s new accountability system.

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Politics
1:39 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Kentucky Bonding Plan for Universities to Pave Way for Construction, Renovation Projects

Credit J. Glover/Creative Commons

FRANKFORT — Renovations to the University of Kentucky's football stadium and the University of Louisville are among the projects that will benefit from a bipartisan General Assembly agreement is allowing state universities to use their own ability to issue bonds for capital projects.

The soon-to-be approved projects were rejected during 2012 budget negotiations, but will be revived once lawmakers pass an authorization bill, House Speaker Greg Stumbo says.

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Politics
5:58 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

Denton Files Two Bills To Place Affordable Care Act Decisions in Lawmakers' Hands

Julie Denton
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

State Sen. Julie Denton has filed two bills that would put control of implementation of the Affordable Care Act into lawmakers’ hands.

Gov. Steve Beshear created a state-run health exchange through an executive order and is mulling whether to expand Medicaid. Both are parts of the ACA, also known as Obamacare.

Denton says her goal is to let lawmakers have some say in either matter.

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Politics
4:34 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

Governor Beshear Wants to Delay Redistricting, But Not Everyone Agrees

Steve Beshear
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

Gov. Steve Beshear is urging legislative leaders to delay General Assembly redistricting.

In a letter to House Speaker Greg Stumbo and Senate President Robert Stivers, the governor says he’d like them to hold off redistricting in the 2013 legislative session and instead take up other important issues, such as pension and tax reforms.

Beshear is opening the door to handling redistricting in a special session instead, because the issue tends to cause hard feelings after lawmakers see their districts changing.

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Politics
12:01 pm
Sun December 30, 2012

Legislators Unlikely to Put State Health Exchange into Law

Audrey Haynes
Credit Cabinet for Health and Family Services

Gov. Steve Beshear will likely have to re-issue his executive order to keep the state’s health exchange running. 

Beshear started the exchange — part of the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as Obamacare — earlier this year through an executive order and state health officials have forged ahead with its creation.

But unless the Kentucky General Assembly takes up the issue to puts it into law, it's likely Beshear’s original order will have to be re-issued to keep work on the exchange moving forward.

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Politics
12:33 pm
Thu December 27, 2012

Gov. Steve Beshear Concerned With Drop in Coal Severance Revenues

Steve Beshear
Credit Kentucky Governor's Office

Gov. Steve Beshear says he's concerned about the declining revenues form the coal severance tax, echoing concerns raised by House Speaker Greg Stumbo.

Money from the tax on mined coal is used largely for state, county and city infrastructure projects -- specifically in coal mining areas like Eastern Kentucky. 

“I am concerned about the coal severance receipts -- they are down, they’re down significantly. And that's because coal mining is down significantly, the tons of coal mined has dropped,” Beshear said.

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Local News
3:03 pm
Wed December 26, 2012

Barge Owners Want Beshear's Help in Raising River Level

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Several companies that operate barges on the drought-stricken Mississippi River have asked Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear to intervene by calling for a presidential disaster declaration.

The companies, including three based in Paducah, say such a request could be a first step in getting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to release water from the Missouri River to improve the flow of theMississippi.

The companies made the appeal in a Dec. 20 letter.

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Politics
11:00 am
Sun December 23, 2012

Beshear Blends Old and New Legislative Priorities in 2013

Steve Beshear
Credit Kentucky Governor's Office

Gov. Steve Beshear is blending a mix of old and new when it comes to his legislative priorities in 2013. 

With the 2013 session’s first days only weeks away, Beshear is ready to push some old initiatives while helping lawmakers solve pressing issues like pensions.

Beshear says he will once again try to find enough votes to pass expanded gambling legislation in 2013. And he wants to pass the so-called dropout bill as well.

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