FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin delivered his 2019 State of the Commonwealth & Budget address Thursday night.
"The state of the Commonwealth is strong, very strong," Gov. Bevin said to a joint session of the Kentucky House and Senate. "We have much to celebrate tonight."
The governor touched on the big issues facing the state including school safety, jobs, education funding, and the pension system.
Gov. Bevin said it is obvious more work needs to be done to pulling the pension system out of debt. He said the solution to the problem is to start by "paying what we're supposed to." He also said he's proud of lawmakers funding the annual payments.
"This is the first administration supported in turn by legislation that came out of this body that has ever funded 100% of the ARC (Actuarially Required Contribution)," Gov. Bevin said.
Bevin championed the amount of money that is being funneled into Kentucky's schools and praised the legislature for their work to pass a school safety bill.
The governor also defended some of the pro-life legislation making its way through the General Assembly this session.
Democratic candidates vying for the office talked to WKYT after the address.
Attorney General Andy Beshear addressed pro-choice options for Kentuckians.
"The constitution provides a choice that I believe is between a woman and her doctor for at least the first two trimesters of pregnancy, and I'm going to enforce that constitutional right," Beshear said.
Meanwhile, Rep. Rocky Adkins touched on the state's economy and questioned some of the governor's statements.
"There's certain parts of this Commonwealth that are doing very, very well, and there's other parts of this Commonwealth that economic prosperity has not happened yet," said Adkins.
Rep. Robert Goforth released this statement on the address on Twitter.
No amount of slide shows, catch phrases, or recycled slogans from @GovMattBevin can change Kentucky for the better. Only a new Governor with a People First Agenda can do that. The rhetoric rings hollow after 3 years of heavy-handed government. #WeAreKy— Robert Goforth (@goforthforky) February 8, 2019
This was Bevin's final State of the Commonwealth address in his first term.