Kentucky lawmakers send budget to governor’s desk

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WDKY) – Kentucky lawmakers have passed a one-year budget. It’s now headed to Governor Beshear’s desk.

The plan is almost a carbon copy of what was passed last year when the legislature avoided passing a 2-year budget because of concerns of the pandemic.

House Bill 192 is 192 pages long and details how the state government plans to spend tax dollars over the next year.

Unlike earlier this year, when the governor was able to decide how federal COVID dollars were spent, the legislature wants to make those decisions with the latest rescue act signed by President Biden last week.

The budget also includes no pay raises for teachers or state workers. Gov. Beshear proposed in January that the spending plan include 1 percent pay raises.

The budget is very similar to what was passed last year, a very austere, bare-bones plan that was based on the uncertainties the pandemic would entail because of the numerous shutdowns and lack of tax money coming in.

After Monday, the legislature only meets one more day before they break for a couple of weeks.

They will return on March 29 and March 30. The budget needed to be approved by Tuesday if the legislature will have any power to override any vetoes in the budget plan.

The budget plan also states that no federal funds could be used to establish any new programs unless those funds are supported by existing amounts.

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