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Special session should focus on budget only



When the Kentucky General Assembly left Frankfort in April without a state budget, it gave Gov. Steve Beshear a chance to exhibit leadership.

Recently, the governor seized that opportunity. The inability of legislative leaders to fulfill their No. 1 job off ered Beshear another chance to find compromise and off er a solution to the state’s budget crisis. Of course, Beshear had that opportunity when the session started in January, but decided instead to continue to follow his slot machine dream.

But on May 13, Beshear laid out a budget proposal that’s been well received so far and announced his plan to call a special session to consider the legislation.

While the actual language of the budget bill hasn’t been provided, an overview shows a compromise that should find support in the House and Senate. It’s a two-year proposal with no tax increases and bonding for only a limited number of projects, which should find favor in the Senate. The House should like the fact it maintains a 177-day school year and avoids serious cuts to education while putting resources toward the construction of some new schools.

Overall, it’s a budget that cuts, but not too detrimentally, and provides a chance for Kentucky to get through what will certainly be another trying two years.

This special session should be called to focus on that job, and that job alone.

— Owensboro (Ky.) Messenger-Inquirer



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