Beshear Signs Corrections Bill Into Law

Landmark legislation designed to ease prison overcrowding in Kentucky has been signed into law by Governor Steve Beshear.

Among those recognized during signing ceremonies at the State Capitol were Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Tom Jensen, and Representative John Tilley, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee.

“In discussing the bill last week with a reporter and writer from The Economist, the weekly news magazine, he said to me and submitted that he thought it was not bipartisan, but it was non-partisan,” said Tilley. “And I frankly think that’s accurate. I don’t think it could have been any more non-partisan than it was, and I think that led to the success of what you see today.”

The legislation, which cleared the House 96-1 and the Senate 38-0, empasizes treatment, probation and parole, over incarceration, for non-violent drug offenders. It’s expected to ease prison overcrowding and save the state 422-million dollars over ten years.

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.