University Funding

GOVERNOR FLETCHER SAYS HE'S WILLING TO HELP KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY PRESIDENTS FIND OTHER OPTIONS TO MOVE AHEAD WITH VETOED CAMPUS PROJECTS. BUT HE'S AGAINST ALLOWING THE SCHOOLS TO FUND CERTAIN REVENUE-PRODUCING PROJECTS WITH THEIR OWN BONDS. JUST LAST MONTH FLETCHER VETOED 370 MILLION DOLLARS IN CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS FROM THE 18-BILLION DOLLAR STATE BUDGET. MORE THAN 19-MILLION DOLLARS WAS CUT FROM GENERAL BOND PROJECTS AT WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY AND ANOTHER 38-MILLION WAS CUT FOR AGENCY BOND PROJECTS. THE GOVERNOR SAID HE OPPOSES BONDING AUTHORITY FOR UNIVERSITIES BECAUSE IS WOULD HURT THE STATE'S BONDED INDEBTEDNESS. HOUSE MAJORITY WHIP BOB DAMRON OF NICHOLASVILLE SAYS THE GOVERNOR IS MAKING A BIG MISTAKE BECAUSE 45 OTHERS STATES DON'T COUNT UNIVERSITY DEBT INTO THEIR BUDGETS AND KENTUCKY SHOULDN'T EITHER. DAMRON INTRODUCED A BILL IN PREVIOUS LEGISLATIVE SESSIONS THAT WOULD ALLOW UNIVERSITIES TO ISSUE THEIR OWN BONDS FOR PROJECTS THAT ARE SELF-SUPPORTING. IT STALLED THREE TIMES IN THE SENATE


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