Gov. Bevin says he will veto state budget and tax legislation

KY Gov. Bevin announces he will veto tax reform state budget bill

KY Gov. Bevin announces he will veto tax reform state budget bill

The plan drew thousands of protestors at the Capitol as teachers and public employees rallied against the legislation that would end the use of accrued sick days for factoring in retirement dates for current employees, continue cost of living adjustments for current retirees and place new-hires into a hybrid cash retirement account.

But so far leaders in Bevin's own party are standing behind the budget and tax bills.

House Bill 366 has come under criticism from Democrats and analysts who say that it favors the wealthy and corporations, reported CNN affiliate WKYT. "We believe Gov. Bevin would be best served to meet with legislators to understand their thoughts and rationale before making a final decision on vetoing the revenue and/or budget bills". He did not say whether he would veto the controversial pension reform bill.

If they don't override the budget veto or pass a new budget, Bevin would have to call a special legislative session for lawmakers to pass a new spending plan.

Senate President Robert Stivers and acting House Speaker David Osborne disputed Bevin's assertion of a shortfall.

Advocacy group the Coalition for a Smoke-Free Tomorrow said the veto from Bevin presents lawmakers another opportunity to eradicate smoking related illnesses, with an increased tax on cigarettes.

Bevin said the budget "has hundreds of millions of dollars in spending we can't afford to spend". "Instead of passing a bad bill behind closed doors at the last minute with no public input, we need to focus on bills that help the working class, not the 1 percent". That measure barely won passage in the Senate on a 20-18 vote and a 51-44 vote in the House.

The tax plan includes taxing various services, such as auto repairs, dry cleaning and pet care, and would also set the tax rates for individuals and corporations at 5 percent. The statewide union released a statement indicating it did not support a veto of the budget or the tax reform bill. "It was passed without public comment, without any analysis about whether it would even work, and without a chance for most legislators to even read it".

They also called on Bevin to veto the pension bill.

The KEA issued a statement saying the bills aren't flawless, but still calling on the legislature to override Bevin's vetoes.

Bevin's budget "was the point of causing numerous districts to go bankrupt" over the two years of the budget, Robbins said.

After signing the pension bill Tuesday, Bevin called it "a very good bill" and criticized the KEA in an interview with WHAS Radio. Bevin said the plan should be more comprehensive, thoughtful and nuanced, but he didn't lay out the exact measures he would like to see enacted. Overall, the plan would give an average $7,000 tax cut to the richest 1 percent of Kentuckians, who average more than $1 million of annual income, according to the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy.

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