GOP lawmakers in budget conference committee agree on two-year plan

04/02/2018 11:24 AM

FRANKFORT — After 10 days in conference committee Republicans announced a compromise budget plan on Monday morning, which Democrats on the committee said did not include their input.

Lawmakers restored funding in a handful of areas in their compromise budget, which works hand-in-hand with a tax reform revenue package that generates hundreds of millions of dollars in funding over the biennium.

A handful of areas see additional funding, including social workers which will receive a 10 percent pay increase, according to Sen. Chris McDaniel, R-Taylor Mill, who read off a litany of changes in the budget agreement.


The legislation fully funds the ARC for state pensions, with the exception of the legislative plan — which sees its funding removed and redirects those funds towards the unfunded liability in the State Police Retirement System pension fund.


In the area of education, the compromise plan increases the SEEK Base Per-Pupil amount to $4,000 in each fiscal year by increasing Base SEEK by $14,301,000 in FY19 and $14,199,900 in FY20 and increasing Tier I by $765,600 in FY19 and $752,000 in FY20.

Amends language to reduce the required SEEK lapse by $7 million at the close of FY18, and to require any excess SEEK funding at the end of FY19 and FY20 to be re-allocated to SEEK Transportation in the same fiscal year, according to the handout.

Increases General Fund support for SEEK Transportation by $127,806,100 in each fiscal year. Increases General Fund support for the SEEK Employer Match by $11,803,200 in FY19 and $3,159,600 in FY20 to fully fund retiree health insurance contributions.

The bill does not take away a 6.25 percent reduction to post secondary education institutions in the state, but rather puts $30 million into the performance based funding model, McDaniel and Rep. Steven Rudy, R-Paducah, told lawmakers. House Minority Floor Leader Rocky Adkins, D-Morehead, expressed frustration with the move towards performance based funding and the equity within that formula.

State Police funding

Legislators also restored cuts to the Kentucky State Police, adding $6.2 million in General Fund support in each year to restore the 6.25 percent budget reduction recommended by the Governor.

The legislation postpones bond authority and associated debt service of two-way radio system replacement, phase one capital project from FY19 to FY20 and makes changes to reflect the appropriation of debt service ($1.1 million in FY19 is removed and replaces the $3.4 million in FY20).
The plan also adds $1 million in General Fund support in each fiscal year for KSP forensic laboratory technician salary increases.

A 31 page summary of the budget changes is available to download here: Staff Analysis – Free Conf Cmte Report HB 200.pdf


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