Ky. lawmakers back in Frankfort for special session to address EKY flooding

Kentucky lawmakers returned to the state capital Wednesday.
Published: Aug. 24, 2022 at 4:00 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Kentucky lawmakers returned to the state capital Wednesday.

They gaveled into a special session because of the recent flooding in Eastern Kentucky.

They are expected to vote on a relief plan. Governor Andy Beshear says he and House and Senate leaders have all agreed on a plan to help restore the region after devastating flooding.

The bill that is got its first reading Wednesday. It includes a $200 million relief plan that Republicans and Democrats say they agree on, and leaders hope that money is quickly on its way to repair and rebuild washed-out areas.

Senate President Robert Stivers says the General Assembly is prepared to provide aid to cities, counties, and schools.

One part of the work will deal with restoring roads, bridges, and other infrastructure and the other half will deal with helping schools since the flooding heavily damaged them and their start dates have been pushed back.

“With ensuring we get infrastructure back in place. Water back in places that still don’t have water,” said Rep. John Blanton, R-Salyersville. “Electricity back. Roads, bridges, tiles.”

Speaker Osborne says $45 million alone will be used to repair roads and bridges damaged or destroyed in the flood waters. It also will provide flexibility for schools trying to work out their calendars in missing so many days.

Lawmakers will work on simultaneous House and Senate bills to approve the package by Friday.

Lawmakers say the relief package will be similar to what was approved in this year’s regular session in the aftermath of the Western Kentucky tornadoes in December 2021.

The bill does not include individual assistance. Speaker Osborne says FEMA is better suited to work with people to offer help on a case-by-case basis.

Kentucky lawmakers held a briefing following the first day of the special session: