Matt Bevin

ky.gov

Kentucky regulators say they’ll go to court to keep from handing over documents related to the state’s plan to reconfigure its Medicaid insurance program. But legal experts say Kentucky’s argument — that it doesn’t have to turn over emails and other communications because they are preliminary and about negotiations — doesn’t hold up.

Since they were first proposed in August 2016, Gov. Matt Bevin’s planned changes to Medicaid have been controversial. Medicaid is the federal program for disabled and low-income people — a program which Kentucky expanded under the Affordable Care Act and previous Gov. Steve Beshear.

J. Tyler Franklin

After Sunday night’s mass shooting in Las Vegas, Gov. Matt Bevin lashed out at gun control advocates on Twitter Monday morning, saying that regulations aren’t the answer to gun violence.

“To all those political opportunists who are seizing on the tragedy in Las Vegas to call for more gun regs…You can’t regulate evil,” he wrote.

Police say more than 50 people died and more than 500 people were injured in the shooting that took place when a 64-year-old man opened fire on a crowded concert from a 32nd story hotel window.

J. Tyler Franklin

The Supreme Court of Kentucky has ruled in favor of Gov. Matt Bevin in a legal challenge over whether he had the authority to overhaul the University of Louisville’s board of trustees last year.

The high court said the issue was moot because the state legislature approved legislation effectively codifying Bevin’s restructuring of the board earlier this year.

“It is for this reason — a deliberate action by the General Assembly intervening to provide greater clarity of law — that the case today is moot,” the court said in an order dismissing the case.

J. Tyler Franklin

Gov. Matt Bevin and Attorney General Andy Beshear were back in court on Wednesday, this time over a challenge to the governor’s reorganization of several education boards this summer.

Beshear argues that the governor illegally suspended laws passed by the legislature when he issued an executive order adding four non-voting advisors to the Kentucky Board of Education and replacing boards that deal with certifying teachers and establishing curriculum standards.

J. Tyler Franklin

In a video played for business leaders, Gov. Matt Bevin called for a variety of changes to the state tax code, including lowering corporate income tax and the eventual elimination of the individual income tax.

The governor said the changes would make the state more attractive to people and companies looking to relocate.

“I’m more confident in your ability to take the leftover dollar and turn it into a ‘dollar plus’ than if you send it to Frankfort and just give us the ability to dispense of it,” Bevin said in a 20-minute long video played before a Kentucky Chamber of Commerce gathering Thursday.

Bevin Floats Prospect of Appointing Attorney General

Sep 14, 2017
Alix Mattingly

Facing lawsuits from the state's top lawyer and adverse rulings from some of its judges, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin said Thursday that lawmakers should consider a change that could give the governor more control over deciding the people assigned with enforcing and interpreting the state's laws.

Bevin has been sued four times by the Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear. Only one of those cases has been decided, with the state Supreme Court telling Bevin he broke the law when he ordered spending cuts at the state's public colleges and universities without asking the legislature for permission. The other cases are still pending, but Franklin Circuit Judge Philip Shepherd has ruled against Bevin in some cases, prompting the governor to call him a "political hack."

Kentucky Governor: Cut College Programs that Don't Pay Off

Sep 13, 2017
J. Tyler Franklin

Gov. Matt Bevin bluntly suggested Tuesday that some academic programs on Kentucky's college campuses have outlived their necessity in times of tight state budgets.

With a pointed jab at the job prospects of interpretive dancers, the Republican governor challenged public university boards and presidents to consider eliminating some courses that don't produce graduates filling high-wage, high-demand jobs.

His message comes as the state tries to fix its failing public pension systems, and economists estimate Kentucky faces a $200 million shortfall when the fiscal year ends in mid-2018.

Ryland Barton

Attorney General Andy Beshear said there are “significant legal problems” with Gov. Matt Bevin’s recent request for most state agencies to cut their budgets by more than 17 percent.

During a news conference on Tuesday, Beshear said that Bevin can’t make the proposed $350 million in cuts because state law only allows a governor to unilaterally cut budgets if there is an estimated budget shortfall.

“These are the restrictions on what the governor can or can’t do,” Beshear said. “I’m just applying the law as it was passed by the General Assembly.”

J. Tyler Franklin, WFPL

More state workers retired last month than the year before amid concerns that the legislature and Gov. Matt Bevin will make changes to state retirement plans.

David Smith, executive director for the Kentucky Association of State Employees, said state workers have been retiring after consultants hired by the state recommended drastic changes to the pension systems.

Kentucky's Last Abortion Clinic to Face Off Against Governor

Sep 5, 2017

Its survival on the line, Kentucky's last abortion clinic is bracing for a pivotal legal showdown with health regulators and the state's anti-abortion governor that could determine whether Kentucky becomes the first state in the nation without an abortion clinic.

The licensing fight, set to play out in a Louisville federal courtroom starting Wednesday, revolves around a state law requiring that EMW Women's Surgical Center have agreements with a hospital and an ambulance service in the event of medical emergencies involving patients.

Court Documents Claim Bevin Used Pressure To Block License

Sep 2, 2017
Jacob Ryan

A Planned Parenthood group says it uncovered documents showing Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration used “fear and intimidation” to block it from getting a state license to provide abortions in Kentucky’s largest city.

The allegations by Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky — that political pressure kept it from getting approval to provide abortions in Louisville — surfaced in court briefs related to a lawsuit challenging the state’s licensing of abortion clinics.

J. Tyler Franklin

Amanda Mills has insurance through Kentucky’s expanded Medicaid program. She also has a full-time job working with homeless people in Louisville.

In January, she’ll lose Medicaid coverage because she makes $1,000-a-year more than the threshold, which is about $28,000 per year. And, she says, she won’t be able to afford the insurance her employer offers, plunging her into a familiar gap created by the Affordable Care Act where people earn too much for Medicaid but too little for a subsidy to assist with premiums.

Facebook screenshot

A Kentucky middle school teacher says Gov. Matt Bevin delivered a “low blow” when he publicly scolded her in a Facebook Live video Monday night.

Bevin displayed a one-sentence email — with a curse word redacted — sent from teacher Corinne Ellis to kick off an hour-long live video session in which he selected questions from state workers about the state’s pension crisis and potential changes.

“These are the kind of things that are not helpful to this discourse,” Bevin said of Ellis’ email in the video, which as of Tuesday afternoon has been viewed more than 126,000 times.

Bevin Hints At Possible Pension Changes In Interview

Aug 26, 2017
J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin has criticized some state workers for inflating their public pension benefits to “stick it to the taxpayer.”

In an interview on WVLK radio, Bevin questioned why state workers were allowed to “hoard” unused sick days and use them to boost their salaries to qualify for a more lucrative retirement check. He also questioned if state workers should be allowed to purchase service time, allowing them to retire faster.

Ryland Barton

Justices on Kentucky’s Supreme Court heard arguments over whether Gov. Matt Bevin had the right to overhaul the University of Louisville board of trustees last year under a law that gives the governor power to reshape state boards while the legislature isn’t in session.

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