Governor Beshear

Business
3:43 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Beshear Welcomes Dr. Schneider To Russell County

Credit Dr. Schneider Automotive Systems

A German-based auto parts manufacturer is investing $29 million dollars in Russell County – meaning more than 150 jobs are coming to the Russell Springs area. Representatives for  Dr. Schneider Automotive Systems took part in a special welcoming ceremony in Russell Springs. 

The event was attended by Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear.

Russell County Judge-Executive Gary Robertson says the company will be moving into the Hitachi Cable plant that closed down in 2007.

“That plant is pretty much work-ready,” said Robertson.  They are having to do a few renovations to some flooring, but [the plant] was already available.”

Robertson says the new operation will provide jobs for those already in Russell County and bring in new residents.

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Education
7:00 am
Sun August 25, 2013

Beshear Announcing $41 Million Race to the Top Grant for Co-ops

Governor Beshear is announcing a major Race to the Top educational grant to several Kentucky school district cooperatives. The governor will be joined by state education commissioner Terry Holliday, the leaders of several educational co-ops, the Hart County Schools superintendent, and other education leaders.

A news release issued by the Governor’s office said Beshear will announce in Shelby County Monday morning $41 million in Race to the Top grant money to be shared by Kentucky school district co-ops.

Those groups include the Green River Regional Educational Cooperative, which includes districts across south-central Kentucky, and the Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative, a consortium of school districts in north-central Kentucky.

Twenty-two districts from those two co-ops joined in an application and were awarded one of the nation’s two largest District-Race to the Top grants.

Race to the Top is a federal education program created to spur innovation and reforms in state and local district K through 12 education.

Politics
2:32 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Debate over Health-Care Law Breaks Out at Kentucky Ham Breakfast

Sen. Mitch McConnell and Gov. Steve Beshear squared off in a heated debate about the federal health-care law at the Kentucky Country Ham Breakfast.

The Democratic governor said Thursday the Affordable Care Act will work in Kentucky.

Beshear said the law will improve Kentucky's health problems, which include some of the nation's worst rates for cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

McConnell, the Senate's top-ranking Republican, said the law is driving up health insurance premiums and forcing employers to reduce working hours for many employees. McConnell said the law should be repealed.

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Health
2:35 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Texting While Driving in Kentucky? You Could Lose Points on Your License

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear has announced new tools aimed at enforcing the state's "no texting" law.

A 2010 law made texting while driving punishable by a fine. Speaking in Louisville Wednesday, Beshear said that hasn't been enough of a deterrent. Starting in a few months, the Transportation Cabinet will take three points off the licenses of drivers caught while texting behind the wheel.

The new three-point texting penalty was announced as transportation leaders and emergency responders gathered for an annual meeting. The state can suspend the licenses of drives who incur 12 penalty points within a two-year period.

For drivers under 18, the threshold is seven points.

According to the Governor's office, more than 5,300 crashes in Kentucky last year were caused by driver distraction.

Politics
11:21 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Grimes to "Officially" Kick Off Her 2014 U.S. Senate Campaign

Kentucky Secretary of State and Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes

Consider it a "take two": Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes Tuesday will officially kick off her U.S. Senate campaign in Lexington.

When Grimes first announced she was joining the race earlier this month, the event was widely described as disorganized and uninspired. The campaign's senior adviser in later days told reporters Grimes would soon have a second "official" announcement of her Senate campaign.

That's taking place Tuesday afternoon in Lexington. Gov. Steve Beshear will be joining Grimes. When Grimes first announced she was running for Senate, Beshear said she hadn't given him any heads up that she had made a decision.

With Beshear's appearance Tuesday, it appears the Grimes camp is hoping to display a unified Democratic front behind the Secretary of State. Last week, longtime U.S. Senator, former Governor, and Owensboro native Wendell Ford endorsed Grimes for Senate.

Grimes has accused U.S Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of being "out of touch" with Kentucky voters and values. And several polls show the Louisville Republican holding dangerously low favorability ratings with Kentucky voters.

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Politics
10:32 am
Fri July 12, 2013

Kentucky Governor Not Pursuing Murray State Presidency

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear’s Communications Director says the Governor won’t pursue the Presidency at Murray State University. Beshear has been rumored as a potential candidate during the past few months.

MSU is in the process of hiring a search firm to compile and filter candidates for the job. MSU hopes to hire a new president in spring 2014.  Governor Beshear is in his second term which ends in 2015. The job would’ve offered Beshear a chance to boost his state retirement benefits. The presidential job pays nearly double the Governor’s salary.

There is a precedent for a Governor to assume a university presidential role in the Commonwealth. Former Governor Paul Patton serves as the president of the University of Pikeville. But, U-Pike is not a state supported institution.

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Politics
3:58 pm
Tue July 9, 2013

Beshear Didn't Know in Advance of Grimes' Campaign

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes recently announced she was entering Kentucky's 2014 U.S. Senate race.

Kentucky Governor Steve says he wasn't given a heads up before fellow Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes announced her U.S. Senate bid last week. But he says he doesn't see it as a slight.

The governor said Tuesday he's eager to help Grimes in her effort to unseat five-term Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in 2014. Beshear himself lost a Senate race to McConnell in the 1990s.

Beshear and Grimes' father are former political rivals. And Grimes defeated the governor's appointee in winning election as Kentucky's secretary of state two years ago.

Beshear said he didn't get the customary notification of Grimes' intention to run before she called a news conference to announce it.

But the governor says he had already pledged his support in any way possible.

Regional
1:39 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Beshear: Kentucky Must Tap Fort Knox's Potential Amid Planned Brigade Loss

Governor Steve Beshear says he will be working with Kentucky's Congressional delegation to hopefully soften the loss of a brigade at Fort Knox. 

The cuts announced Tuesday will deactivate the Third Brigade Combat Team, which has about 3,500 soldiers.   The number of active duty combat brigades is being slashed as the military returns to pre-9\11 troop levels.

Beshear says not much can be done about the federal decision, but the state can continue to position Fort Knox as a vital resource to the Defense Department.  He suggests building on changes the post made under the military's base re-alignment some five years go.

"We ended up building the biggest office building in this state on Fort Knox to house the Human Resources Command that handles all human resources for the Army," Beshear remarks.  "Why not move human resources for the Air Force, Marines, Navy to that location?"

Beshear claims having human resources for every military branch at one location could be an efficiency measure for the Department of Defense.  In addition, he says officials will be looking at other ways to maximize the use of Fort Knox.

Politics
3:04 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Beshear Meets with Legislative Leaders on Redistricting Plans

Gov. Steve Beshear was meeting Monday afternoon with House Speaker Greg Stumbo and Senate President Robert Stivers to try to work on a plan to resolve legislative redistricting.

The governor has said he is confident that the issue will be resolved in a special session sometime this year.

Each decade, lawmakers are required to draw new legislative district boundaries to account for population changes recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau. Kentucky had major population shifts between 2000 and 2010, requiring changes in boundary lines to comply with the federal and state "one person, one vote" mandate.

Two federal lawsuits have been filed in recent weeks to speed up the process in Kentucky. One asks that a three-judge panel redraw boundaries.

Politics
8:23 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Timing of Special Legislative Session in Kentucky Remains Uncertain

The state capitol in Frankfort will likely host a special legislative session sometime this fall.
Credit Kevin Willis

The timing of a special legislative session remains uncertain, though Gov. Steve Beshear and top lawmakers have been tossing around potential dates.

Beshear wants lawmakers back in Frankfort before the end of the year to resolve the lingering issue of legislative redistricting, a politically divisive issue that tends to overshadow all other matters when it's up for consideration.

The governor said he wants the issue resolved before lawmakers begin budget talks in January.

Redistricting is undertaken every 10 years to account for population changes recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau. Kentucky had major population shifts between 2000 and 2010, requiring reconfiguration of legislative districts in both the House and Senate.

The Kentucky Supreme Court struck down lawmakers' initial redistricting plan last year, forcing them to start over.

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