General Assembly Continues Budget Work

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

The 2010 session of the Kentucky General Assembly is entering its fourth week.

Crafting a new state budget remains the primary objective, as lawmakers scramble to find new sources of revenue. A major overhaul of the state’s tax system is still a possibility, but House Speaker Greg Stumbo admits it’s probably a long shot.

“We all agree we need to grow our base,” says Stumbo. “We need to shrink government. We need to live within our means. We all agree upon those things. But if you’re truly going to do tax modernization as a business would, then what you would do is look at what your revenue streams are, what your expenditure stream is and try to match them up. And if you look the national economy, states haven’t been very good at doing that.”

Last Friday, Stumbo and Senate President David Williams made it clear Gov. Beshear’s budget plan based on casino gambling revenue is dead.