Beshear Vetoes Transportation Funding Bill

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Steve Beshear vetoed a two-year, $3.8
billion transportation plan on Monday, saying the legislation would
have hampered his administration's ability to adequately manage
road projects in the state.

Beshear, a Democrat, said his administration would continue with
an alternate transportation plan that would be compiled within the
coming months. It would include projects authorized by the General
Assembly and more, and would give his administration more
flexibility, Beshear said.

"This legislation would have severely limited the
Transportation Cabinet in its ability to deal with project cost
overruns and any potential emergencies," Beshear said. "Without
this veto, some critical projects may have to sit idle because the
actual cost could exceed the amount set forth in the legislation."

Kentucky lawmakers earlier this month approved a two-year, $19
billion state spending plan but authorized the state's
transportation construction plan in separate legislation. Beshear
vetoed that measure in its entirety on Monday.

The plan authorized federal and state transportation
construction projects, including hundreds of road and bridge plans
throughout the state. Beshear noted the plan listed more projects
than the state could pay for.

Transportation Cabinet Secretary Joe Prather said the state
would have up to about $150 million available to spend on road
projects during the next two years. Meanwhile, the federal
government would have about $1.3 billion available during that
period, Prather said.

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