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Kentucky Governor worried proposed state budget could hamper disaster recovery

Governor Andy Beshear discussing damages from recent storms in Kentucky
Gov. Andy Beshear Youtube
Governor Andy Beshear discussing damages from recent storms in Kentucky

As Kentucky continues to clean up after last week's severe storms, Governor Beshear said he is unhappy with part of budget approved by state lawmakers.

During a press conference, the governor said some lawmakers may believe there are additional funds for disaster relief, but he said that is not really the case.

 
“That, under the budget can only go to FEMA matches. FEMA matches can be a year, two, or three years later. You can't use them for the immediate emergency response.”

 In the proposed budget lawmakers sent to the governor, there is a cap on what the executive branch can spend when responding to disasters.

The governor, expressed his concern about such a provision. He said it could lead to serious delays in getting relief to victims.

 
“It would have taken a special session, or calling people back in the veto period for us to simply respond and think about how long that takes, at how long it takes a bill to pass. Those are precious moments, minutes, hours, and days when we have to be responding immediately.”
 

Beshear said under the current proposed budget, the response to recent storms and those that hit earlier this year would have exceeded the amount allowed for disaster relief.

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Stan Ingold is WEKU's News Director. He has worked in public broadcasting for 18 years, starting at Morehead State Public Radio before spending the past 10 years at Alabama Public Radio. Stan has been honored with numerous journalism awards for his public radio reporting.
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