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February 2, 2024 1:41pm

House Passes Their Version of the Budget

Last night, the state budget bills passed the House and are now headed to the Senate. Between HB 1 and HB 6 respectively, the budget includes $29 billion dollars of General Fund spending and $1.7 billion dollars of spending from the state’s budget reserve trust fund. These budget bills were filed two weeks ago by House Appropriations and Revenue Committee chair, Jason Petrie. The legislature’s long-standing goal for this biennial budget was to create a series of one-time investments that would spur growth but still allow the state to hit  triggers needed to lower the income tax in the coming years. HB 1, covering those one-time investments, passed unanimously. HB 6, the executive branch budget, passed 77-19.

The amended versions of these bills include:

  • $225 million toward the Cabinet for Economic Development, with $100 million going explicitly toward “mega-development projects.”
  • $150 million for drinking and wastewater improvements across the state.
  • Nearly $1 billion into the unfunded liability of the state pension program.
  • $319 million in fiscal year one and $359 million in fiscal year two for school transportation, the latter fully funding school transportation for the first time in over 20 years.
  • $196 million in funding for the College Access Program, a needs-based grant initiative for undergraduate students in Kentucky.

Read more about HB 1 and HB 6 here.

The budget will now move to the Senate where they will provide their changes to the bill. The legislature has until mid-April to finalize the budget. Conferences to work out changes will begin in the coming weeks.