Verbal Jousting In Frankfort Over Passport Contract

The debate over Kentucky’s huge contract with Passport for regional Medicaid services continues to rage in Frankfort. 

The Beshear administration blames the General Assembly, and lawmakers blame the administration for problems with the $800 million contract for Medicaid services in the Louisville area.  Among those on the hot seat at the hearing was Health and Family Services Secretary Janie Miller. 

“I don’t think the administration created this mess, but the governor and I are committed to cleaning it up,” she said.

Senate President David Williams fired back: “I hope you’ll accept our criticism of your agency in the same line that you should consider the criticism that the auditor put on you, which basically is you haven’t done your job.”

Moving forward, Miller says administration officials will meet with the Passport Board of Directors next Tuesday to discuss the 11-point Corrective Action Plan released Wednesday.

By Tony McVeigh

Veteran broadcast journalist Tony McVeigh has been covering Kentucky politics since 1986, reporting for Clear Channel Communications before joining Kentucky Public Radio in 2004. His stories are aired by seven KPR affiliates, whose signals blanket the Commonwealth and parts of surrounding states. McVeigh began his broadcasting career at WRFC in Athens, Georgia, while earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia. He has extensive anchor/reporter experience, including stints with South Carolina Network and Georgia Radio News Service in Atlanta. In 2007 and 2008, McVeigh was named Best Radio Reporter in the Kentucky Associated Press Awards. He also picked up consecutive AP Awards for Best Political Coverage. McVeigh won four Kentucky AP Awards in 2009, six in 2010 - including Best Political Coverage and Best Hard News Feature - and three in 2011. His coverage of the 2007 Kentucky governor's race topped the Political Reporting category of the Society of Professional Journalists Green Eyeshade Awards of 2008. In 2009, McVeigh placed second in Courts and Law Reporting in the Atlanta-based competition for journalists in 11 Southern states. McVeigh is also the proud recipient of an Individual Liberty Award from the Kentucky Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The Brunswick, Georgia, native is a die-hard UGA football fan who enjoys photography, astronomy, live music, hiking Kentucky's Red River Gorge and exploring the state's beautiful back roads. McVeigh and his big, fat, black cat Simon, reside in Frankfort, KY.