Governor Bevin

Associated Press

— Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin apologized Sunday for saying that children were sexually abused because they were left home alone while teachers rallied to ask lawmakers to override his vetoes.

The Republican issued his apology in a nearly four-minute video posted online, saying "it is not my intent to hurt anybody in this process, but to help us all move forward together."

The federal government has approved most of Governor Matt Bevin’s proposed changes to the state’s Medicaid program.

Bevin’s proposal includes requiring many of the state’s Medicaid enrollees to perform some kind of “community engagement” — work, volunteer service, job training or education. The federal government paved the way for the approval on Thursday, when it announced it would allow work requirements as a condition for Medicaid coverage.

Battery Plant Coming to Eastern Kentucky

Dec 15, 2017

West Coast Battery Company EnerBlu plans to invest $372 million in a manufacturing plant in Pikeville.  The formal announcement came this morning in eastern Kentucky. 

Long-time Congressman Hal Rogers says the expected 875 jobs eventually will be just the right medicine for a region hit hard by coal industry losses.  “You’ve been talking about evolving the economy of a whole region of the state.  This is a big step in that direction,” said Rogers.

State Rep. Dan Johnson committed suicide Wednesday evening, two days after the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting published accusations that he sexually assaulted a minor.

Johnson was a preacher from Mt. Washington in Bullitt County. He shot himself on a bridge over the Salt River, according to WDRB.

Johnson posted a suicide note on Facebook Wednesday evening calling the accusations false and telling conservatives to “take a stand.”

Stu Johnson

Hundreds of people gathered Friday in Pikeville's East Kentucky Expo Center for the Shaping Our Appalachian Region Summit.  

They heard status reports on topics ranging from high tech greenhouse plans to aerospace manufacturing and workforce training expansion.

$1.3 Billion Aluminum Company Comes to Northeast Ky

Apr 26, 2017

Just over a billion dollar manufacturing investment is being made in northeast Kentucky, a region which is still feeling the effects of job losses in the coal, steel and railroad industries.  

Governor Bevin made the economic development announcement Wednesday in Wurtland.

Gov. Bevin Pushing for Tax Reform

Apr 21, 2017

Jim Carroll started working for Kentucky’s state parks system in 1978 making $780 a month.

“So I knew the pay wasn’t good but I knew that it was a place where you could advance over time,” Carroll said. “It was stable, and retirement was part of that.”

Carroll later worked in the tourism cabinet and retired in 2009. Since then, he’s organized a group of concerned state pensioners called Kentucky Government Retirees.

Members of Kentucky Adoption Task Force Named

Apr 19, 2017

Kentucky House Speaker Jeff Hoover has announced a new task force that will overhaul the state’s adoption process. A bi-partisan group of eight House members are tasked with streamlining the process and making it more affordable. 

Marisa Hempel

The Kentucky General Assembly wrapped up this past week, and not only were there overrides to the Governor’s vetoes, but the new Republican super-majority successfully passed quite a bit of new legislation in what seems to be record time.

On this week’s Eastern Standard, our panel of reporters joins us for a roundtable to discuss all legislative news that occurred in Frankfort this year.


Ky. Officials Seek Extension On REAL ID Implementation

Oct 4, 2016

State officials have requested an extension to bring the state’s driver license policies into compliance with federal regulations to avoid locking out Kentuckians from federal institutions, nuclear facilities and eventually, commercial airplanes.

All states are required to be in compliance with federal REAL ID driver licenses and state identification standards put into effect in 2008 to help abate terrorism. Kentucky is one of 31 states that is not compliant or has an extension that expires on Oct 10.

Gov. Bevin Names New Lexington Chief Prosecutor

Sep 22, 2016

A veteran prosecutor in the Fayette County Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office will take over for retiring Ray Larson.  Governor Bevin appointed Lou Anna Red Corn to the chief prosecutor position Thursday.

Bevin Joins Lawsuit Challenging New Overtime Pay Rule

Sep 21, 2016

Gov. Bevin has added Kentucky to a multi-state lawsuit against the federal government over a new rule that makes more people eligible to receive overtime pay.

Starting in December, the new policy will require employers to pay overtime to people who make up to $47,476 a year ($913 per week). Currently employers only have to pay overtime to people who make up to $23,660 a year.

Bevin opposes the rule, saying it would increase employment costs for the state and private employers.

Fire Safety Month Focuses on Off-Campus Housing

Sep 7, 2016

September is being observed as Campus Fire Safety Month as Kentucky joins with states across the nation in focusing on the issue.

KSP Troopers Get Higher Pay

Aug 1, 2016

Starting this week, Kentucky State Police troopers are earning higher pay for their service.  Governor Bevin and state lawmakers worked earlier this year to include salary increases in the budget.  State Police Spokesman Michael Webb says this pay hike could help with recruitment efforts.  “With this new pay raise, it is a new tool that has bolstered our efforts and abilities to recruit quality applicants who will be trustworthy and serve their communities in a professional manner,” said Webb.



Testimony Taken in Final Medicaid Reform Hearing

Jul 6, 2016


Governor Bevin’s plan to substantially change the state Medicaid program got another public review Wednesday.  The third and final public hearing in Hazard attracted a room full of onlookers.

In announcing the plan to transform Medicaid, Governor Bevin said it would empower people to improve their health while ensuring its financial sustainability.  Among other things, it calls for able bodied Kentuckians to work, volunteer, or do other community engagement to receive benefits. 

Gov. Bevin Forms Criminal Justice Task Force

Jun 21, 2016

Gov. Matt Bevin said he wants Kentucky to “lead the way” on criminal justice reform and has appointed a council tasked with producing legislative ideas for next year’s General Assembly.

The 23-member committee includes state officials, legislators and advocates from around the state.

Bevin said the state’s laws need to be changed to save money and allow those convicted of crimes to more effectively rejoin society.

Budget Negotiations Still in Play in Frankfort

Apr 11, 2016

Kentucky House and Senate leaders have announced they will resume budget talks Tuesday and have moved the final day of the legislative session to Friday. 

Kentucky's Pension Shortfall Could Prompt Action on Tax Reform

Feb 15, 2016

    Discussions about Kentucky tax reform have circulated around the state capitol for decades but no comprehensive tax measure has passed. Two state lawmakers say major pension shortfalls could help move the issue along.

2016 Ky General Assembly on Eastern Standard

Feb 10, 2016
Sen Chris McDaniel @kychrismcdaniel

This year marks the first legislative session under Governor Matt Bevin, and the first budget year of his administration as well.

A lot of important issues affecting many Kentuckians are making their way into this legislative session. Significant budget cuts, and legislation aimed at addressing issues like abortion, coal, and heroin addiction as well as many other important issues.

This week’s program originates from the State Capitol in Frankfort and with us to discuss some of these issues will be:

Stu Johnson / WEKU News


Hundreds of people with disabilities rallied at the state capitol Tuesday to highlight the importance of state-supported services for the disabled. Governor Bevin told participants that he’s recommending more funds for programs that assist the disabled.

Stu Johnson / WEKU News


Fire investigators are continuing to comb through debris at the former Blue Grass Stockyards in Lexington, searching for a cause for a massive weekend fire.  Governor Matt Bevin toured the scene Monday and talked to those impacted.

Senate President Give Ominous Budget Prediction

Jan 21, 2016

Gov. Matt Bevin is scheduled to deliver his State of the Commonwealth Budget Address on Tuesday. It likely to include a call for serious belt tightening. 

Less than a week before Gov. Bevin presents his formal proposal for what Kentucky’s state budget should look like, Republican Senate President Robert Stivers, Bevin’s ally, gave this ominous prediction: 
“I think this budget that will be introduced and proposed by the executive branch will be one of the most austere budgets that I’ve seen in my 20 years in the General Assembly,” said Stivers.