Governor Matt Bevin

Buffalo Trace District Health Department

The president of the Kentucky Health Departments Association said public health agencies across the Commonwealth are preparing budgets, realizing pension relief may not come from Frankfort soon.  Governor Bevin has unveiled his latest proposal for quasi-government agencies and regional universities.  But he’s not made a decision yet about any special legislative session.


Kentucky Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis says the state labor cabinet issued subpoenas tied to public school teachers’ sickout protests in Frankfort is an issue out of his control. 

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear said Tuesday he’ll take Gov. Matt Bevin to court if he doesn’t rescind the subpoenas.  

Stu Johnson

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin used a roundtable meeting in Lexington Wednesday to discuss a school choice proposal offered up by the Trump administration.  

It comes in the form of a  $5 billion dollar national tax credit scholarship program.

Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education President Aaron Thompson along with administrators at five comprehensive universities remain intensely interested in a pension fix.  Governor Bevin this week vetoed the bill adopted by lawmakers which sought to aid schools and many quasi-governmental groups transition their retirement strategies.

A federal judge has again struck down Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin’s changes to the Medicaid program, including community engagement requirements that would have made some people work to keep coverage.

The Medicaid changes were set to partially go into effect April 1. Wednesday’s decision is the second time U.S. District Judge James Boasberg struck down Kentucky’s proposal – the first was in June 2018.

Stu Johnson

As expected, Gov. Matt Bevin’s State of the Commonwealth speech Thursday night drew a strong reaction, particularly from Democratic lawmakers. 

House Minority Floor Leader Rocky Adkins said there are areas of bipartisanship in fighting opioids, foster care reforms, and school safety. But, the long-time Democratic lawmaker and one of those challenging Bevin for governor, said sections of Kentucky are missing out on economic prosperity. Adkins went further on public pensions, saying Bevin is wrong on that issue. 

Stu Johnson

A little less than 24 hours after Gov. Matt Bevin summoned lawmakers to Frankfort to make changes to the state’s pension systems, the legislature voted to end the special session.

The development is a blow to the governor, who called the special session days after the state Supreme Court struck down a new pension law that Bevin signed earlier this year.

Special Legislation Session On Pensions Underway

Dec 18, 2018
Stu Johnson

Kentucky lawmakers will be back at the capital today for day two of a special legislative session called by Governor Bevin.  It comes less than a week after the State Supreme Court struck down public pension reform legislation passed earlier this year.  

Senate President Robert Stivers was asked if the governor’s call was in reaction to the court ruling. “This session is in reaction to a pension problem that is the biggest fiscal problem in this state,” said Stivers.

The Republican leader of the Kentucky Senate believes the election outcomes this week could carry political weight for future races.  Robert Stivers attended Andy Barr’s Election Night event Tuesday.


Mike McCardwell, a retired teacher from Shelbyville, says he thinks anger over the pension issue hasn’t waned after massive teacher protests earlier this year. 

He says educators are still mad that Gov. Matt Bevin said opponents to the pension bill have a “thug mentality.” 

McCardwell told Barton, “For 40 years I’ve encouraged students to honor the government and value the government because America’s a great country. I was disappointed the teachers were attacked by legislators and by the governor. As I said, I don’t like being called a thug after working for 40 years.”


The Kentucky Democratic Party has filed an ethics complaint against Gov. Matt Bevin for tweeting out his support for embattled Congressman Andy Barr’s reelection campaign from his official Twitter account. 

On Saturday, Bevin posted a picture taken in the audience of the rally at Eastern Kentucky University’s Alumni Coliseum, saying he was in a packed house of people who love the president and are supporting Barr’s reelection. 

Stu Johnson

Governor Matt Bevin believes portions of Thursday’s Kentucky Supreme Court hearing on the new pension reform law were, in his words, “not on the matters that really are of importance”. 

The governor offered his thoughts after participating in a Lexington event Friday. “The desire to focus on technicalities and not on the merits of the suit and of what is and what is not inviolable was I think wasted opportunity,” said Bevin.

Amid a shortage of skilled workers, Gov. Matt Bevin says that the state and country need to focus on training young people to fill jobs in high-demand industries like manufacturing, healthcare and transportation.

The governor once again singled out French literature as an area of study that the students shouldn’t focus on.

On Wednesday, a federal appeals court will hear arguments over a Kentucky law requiring doctors to show and describe a fetal ultrasound to patients before conducting an abortion.

The law also requires doctors to play audio of the fetal heartbeat, even if patients object.

The measure was struck down by a lower court last fall, citing concerns over the psychological harm it could cause. But Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration appealed the decision to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Andy Beshear Expected to Announce Run for Governor

Jul 9, 2018

Attorney General Andy Beshear will launch a run for Kentucky governor this week and his running mate will be an assistant high school principal and political recruiter. The Democrat has a deep rivalry with Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.

Beshear sent out a press release on Sunday promoting a series of speaking events across the state on Monday and Tuesday in order to make an “announcement concerning future of Kentucky.”

Gov. Matt Bevin says in order to put an end to school shootings, parents need to stop over-medicating their children and steer them away from cell phones and violent video games.

The governor’s comments came during a listening session hosted by the Federal Commission on School Safety, which was created by President Donald Trump earlier this year.

Gov. Matt Bevin has shuffled his leadership team again, tapping Labor Cabinet Secretary Derrick Ramsey to be the new leader of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

As the cabinet’s new secretary, Ramsey will oversee several worker training and education programs, including agencies like the Kentucky Department of Education, Kentucky Educational Television and Unemployment Insurance Commission.

KY Labor Cabinet

Derrick Ramsey

The Kentucky Board of Education has voted to accept the resignation of Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt.

The board's decision comes one day after Republican Gov. Matt Bevin replaced most of the board with new members. The appointments mean everyone on the board has now been chosen by Bevin, who took office in December 2015.

Governor Bevin Vetoes Pension Phase In Measure

Apr 5, 2018

Governor Matt Bevin has vetoed legislation allowing local governments to cover pension cost increases over time.  In his veto message, Bevin said it’s not the phase-in section of the measure which worries him.  The governor says some buy out provisions create too much risk to retirement systems and could burden taxpayers.

Gov. Matt Bevin and Congressman Hal Rogers this weekend announced plans for a $3.4 million water project in eastern Kentucky.  In all, more than four and a half million dollars will go to address long standing problems in one Appalachian community.

Stu Johnson

Kentucky lawmakers are being asked to make significant changes in the state’s criminal justice system. Much of the formal capitol rotunda announcement Tuesday focused on ways to reduce prison populations and save taxpayer dollars.


Gov. Matt Bevin has filed a lawsuit in response to a legal challenge over Kentucky’s new Medicaid work requirement.

Kentucky is the first state in the country to require people to work or volunteer in order to keep Medicaid benefits.


Stu Johnson

Kentucky Habitat for Humanity is launching a three-year initiative aimed at accelerating construction of affordable housing.  Habitat is joining about 50 non-profit housing providers.  The formal announcement of the 2020 Housing Vision project came Monday at the state capitol.

Governor Matt Bevin says the Commonwealth’s homelessness problem is troubling.  “Kentucky has more homeless students per capita than any state in America.  What a tragic and terrible statistic to lead the nation in.  This is why this matters.  Every single bit of it matters,” said Bevin.

Stu Johnson

Kentuckians with mental and physical disabilities filled the halls of the state capital and annex Wednesday.  They were in Frankfort to lobby lawmakers for social service funding.

Stu Johnson

Bevin’s budget bill keeps per-pupil funding for Kentucky’s public education students at $3,981 per student, but chips away at support programs and requires local school districts to pay a larger share of student transportation costs.

Administration officials say budget pressures created by the pension crisis has made it “harder to protect” public education from cuts.

Stu Johnson

Gov. Matt Bevin covered lots of ground in last night’s State of the Commonwealth and Budget address. That included a glimpse into the future funding of corrections and higher education.

Governor Delivers His Budget Speech Tuesday

Jan 15, 2018

Gov. Matt Bevin will deliver his state of the commonwealth and budget address tomorrow evening, presenting how he thinks the state should spend its money over the next two years. Bevin has hinted at major cuts to set aside more money for the state’s pension systems. 

Bevin administration officials say Kentucky needs an additional $700 million for the pension systems, meaning pensions would take up about 20 percent of state spending.

Gov. Matt Bevin is pitching to business groups across the state his bill that would—among other things—move most future and some current state workers onto 401(k) style plans.  Lawmakers in rural parts of the state have been slow to support the proposal. 

The plan has drawn fire from state employees who worry that future hires and current ones affected by the changes would receive less-generous benefits from the state. 

Stu Johnson

State and local government leaders, education officials, and business representatives all gathered in Scott County Monday for a formal announcement at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky.  

This event centered on engineering.