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Senate Adjourns Special Session

Kentucky’s special session on Medicaid officially ended Wednesday evening. Adjournment came after Senate Republicans approved resolutions symbolically overriding Governor Beshear’s line-item vetoes of the Medicaid bill. Eleven Democrats in the chamber, including Representative Robin Webb of Grayson, refused to support the resolutions.

“My outrage is we had to come back for a special session. It was unnecessary. It’s been costly. And we’re here today and we have no purpose today. Purpose here today is sheer politics. We’ve heard bashing the governor. We’ve heard all that. That’s the purpose here today,” he said.

Constitutionally, lawmakers must be paid for the entire 24-day session, but Senate President David Williams promises no Senate member will be paid for any day past March 24th.

“Either they can make refunds voluntarily, or I will withhold the days over the next several months,” he said.

That’s the day the House adjourned, went home and refused to come back. The cost to taxpayers for the special session was nearly 64-thousand dollars a day.

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.