Local legislators talk budget, how it will change going forward

The first version of a budget is in the hands of the Kentucky General Assembly for review, and local legislators have plenty of thoughts about it. 

Senator Whitney Westerfield of Crofton says that this budget is absolutely going to change, with both the House and the Senate prepared to make amendments and adjustments in the coming weeks, so he cautioned anyone and getting too attached to this version.  He says the budget is all about compromise.

One thing the proposed budget does not include is funding for teacher pay raises—instead, it puts additional funding into the SEEK formula, which would allow individual districts to use that money as they wish.

Representative Myron Dossett says he knows that’s not completely ideal for all districts—such as Christian—so he intends to look into ways to adjust how that formula works and let those districts can the best benefit they can from it.

Representative Walker Thomas says along with the increase to SEEK funding, they are strongly encouraging school districts to use that for teacher raises.

House Bill 6 is the bulk of the executive budget, which is a hefty 251-page document, but also filed was House Bill 1, which includes one-time expenditures of $1.7 billion from the state’s reserves. Projects involved in those one-time spending including money for water and wastewater grants, matching funds for federal grants, money to pay state pension debts and more.