Kentucky lawmakers override governor's vetoes

Kentucky lawmakers override governor's vetoes

Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin says it's "a fact" that "hundreds of thousands" of children were left home alone by single parents unable to afford child care, and some were raped, poisoned, and took drugs during the one-day teachers' strike.

Bevin said, that in some "communities", his fellow Kentuckians knew children would be home alone and "took advantage of it".

But Governor Bevin tweeted that he's put more money in to public education and pensions than any governor in Kentucky history.

Some lawmakers did not want to override the vetoes, but perhaps for different reasons than Bevin, who suggested it barely makes a dent in the deficit.

Ross says the wanted to see the vetoes overridden because there were things she liked like increased SEEK funding, and transportation funding, although noting it's not ideal. Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young's hit "Teach Your Children" bellowed from loud speakers before speeches began.

Bevin said the tax increase would not be enough to provide the kind of funding demanded by teachers, but the Republican-majority state House voted to overturn his vetoes.

Bevin said he is "offended" by the striking teachers who "cavalierly" and "flippantly disregarded what's best for children".

"I want to be in my classroom instructing future citizens, but I'm afraid that spending at the state level is getting worse and worse, and we need those dollars for a 21st century education", she said.

Republican lawmakers approved a two-year budget earlier this month that included record increases in public education spending that were to be paid for with an accompanying $480 million tax increase.

"All I've got to say is, I listened to this governor past year for months, upon months, upon months say he would call a special session to deal with the pension issue and tax reform".

Bevin had vetoed both bills, the budget and tax bills, warning the new taxes would not generate enough money to cover the new spending.

The measures will raise revenue for the state over the next two years by levying a 6 percent sales tax on a variety of services, including auto and home repairs, to pay for higher school spending.

Lawmakers convened Friday to consider the governor's vetoes, and the votes are expected to be close.

"You can stand here all day and act like you are all for (education) until it comes time to pay for it". "We then create more taxpayers with more money going into the coffers to pay for things like education".

The home voted 5-7 to 40 to override the veto of the tax growth and sixty six to 28 to override the budget veto.

"We have to get this revenue to finance schools", explained a Republican and middle school special education teacher, consultant Regina Huff.

In a letter, Kentucky Secretary of Education and Workforce Development Hal Heiner says there's been a 27% increase in education funding since 2011.

Goodman says Kentucky teachers historically knew there was a financial trade off in lower salaries for doing a job that support a public good.

In Arizona, after weeks of teacher protests and walkout threats across the state, Gov. Doug Ducey promised a net 20 percent raise by 2020.

Republicans - with an eye toward the gallery filled with red-clad teachers - said Democrats were hypocritical because they champion education while voting against the revenue bill and budget which funds increases to education.

In Oklahoma, the largest teachers union ended a nine-day walkout Thursday, but educators there vow to continue fighting.

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