FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDKY) – Kentucky House Republicans say they will pass a one-year budget, and question how much authority a governor has when they meet in the legislative session next year.
Legislative leaders talked about their priorities Friday morning in a news conference.
Kentucky House Speaker David Osborne started off the news conference saying thousands of more Kentuckians will lose their jobs, referring to the restaurant employees and others who may be out of work because of the latest round of Governor Beshear’s COVID-19 mandates.
Osborne says he believes many Kentuckians’ voices have not been heard or been ignored during the pandemic. As the legislature starts back in January, he says their voices will be heard.
He said the first priority is the state budget, as lawmakers will have to pass the second year of what would normally be a two-year spending plan, but, because of the uncertainty of COVID-19, they passed just a one-year plan last year.
Speaker Pro Tem David Meade one person should not have the power to shut down the state’s economy. He also said he believes most business owners are doing the right thing now, without the governor having to make mandates.
“Especially in my district. When I go in stores and restaurants and gas stations, all are requiring masks, they are taking their own precautions,” said Rep. Meade, R-Stanford. “They are taking the people that are coming in. I believe that is how we should continue to operate.”
Lawmakers said the governor or government has no business telling people what to do in their own private homes, in talking about the limits on holiday family gatherings.
Bottom line they said, Kentuckians by now know how to take care of themselves.
House Speaker Osborne says they will move forward with having the legislative session, even if there are limits on group sizes because the constitution requires them to do so.