Kentucky senator looks to close 'Blackjewel loophole' affecting Harlan County Schools

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) Harlan County Public Schools owes Revelation Energy, the sister company of bankrupt Blackjewel, more than $70,000 after a tax overpayment, and a Kentucky senator is looking to pass legislation that will keep the district off the hook.

Senator Johnny Ray Turner is trying to close what he calls another coal company loophole.

Sen. Johnny Ray Turner, D - Prestonsburg, says the district didn't want to pay because Revelation still owes them more than $100,000 in other taxes. He has prefiled a bill in the Kentucky Legislature which would modify the tax code to clear school districts of refunds owed if the company has outstanding taxes.

The state has decided not to order a tax refund. Now the case is in the decision of a bankruptcy court.

If the bankruptcy court orders the school system to pay back the $73,000 overpayment, Senator Turner says it will hurt the school district.

"Education's been devastated in the past few years anyway, so we want to try to stop that if we can," Turner said.

If the bankruptcy courts decide the school district needs to return the overpayment, Senator Turner says the superintendent wants that money to go directly to the out of work miners.

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