Governor Bevin calls for 17 percent budget cut

Governor Bevin calls for 17 percent budget cut
(Source: Michael Williams/WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Governor Matt Bevin is calling for almost all state departments to cut 17% from their current budgets.

Bevin's budget's director sent a letter to state officials Friday asking for the cuts, which would total around $350 million.

Of that, $200 million is to make up for a budget shortfall this fiscal year. An extra $150 million is to replenish the state's rainy day fund.

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Kentucky is required to have a balanced budget.

Senator Morgan McGarvey (D-Jefferson) said the issue is that revenue growth has not matched up to what both parties expected it to be when the budget passed last year.

"I wish those numbers had been more accurate. And how you make those cuts too really tells a lot. And these cuts are going to go to agencies that deal with disabled," McGarvey said. "They're going to go to public safety and our prosecutors. They're going to go to our court system, our third branch of government. Really tough cuts across the board."

McGarvey added that while Governor Bevin can make cuts for the budget shortfall, he does not believe the Governor can cut the extra $150 million for the rainy day fund.

Some areas like Medicaid and the Department of Corrections are exempt.

A special session is expected sometime before the end of the year to address tax reform.

While cuts may help the budget shortfall, they do not begin to address the $30 to 80 billion pension shortfall the state also faces.

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