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Kentucky Association of Counties


County Champion


House releases budget package, including $450 million for matching funds to local governments and nonprofits through the GRANT program

By Kayla Carter Smith, Policy Analyst
House Appropriations and Revenue Chair Jason Petrie filed the proposed state budget

A proposed $124.8 billion two-year spending plan was unveiled in the Kentucky House Tuesday, legislation that the head of the House Appropriations and Revenue Committee characterized as a “robust, fiscally conservative budget.”

Rep. Jason Petrie (R-Todd County), Chair of the House A&R Committee, filed HB 6 as the proposed executive branch budget for the FY2025-2026 biennium.

“HB 6 continues our commitment to investing in our commonwealth’s future while prioritizing responsible spending that aims to efficiently allocate resources while maintaining essential public services,” Petrie said in a news release. “This approach has served us well, allowing us to provide Kentuckians with necessary services while helping amass a historic amount in our budget reserve trust and addressing state debt and liabilities.”

Counties, as political subdivisions of the state, rely on funding in the state budget to carry out functions of the state at the local level.

HB 6 includes new funding relevant to county officials:

  • $5 million per year to complete the statewide deployment of Next Generation 911
  • $20 million in FY2025 and $15 million in FY2026 for grants to law enforcement and first responders for the purchase of body armor through the Attorney General’s office
  • Increased funding for the Commonwealth’s Attorneys rocket docket program – from $1.4 million a year in the last biennium to more than $3.4 million per year in this budget
  • Funding for County Attorneys and Commonwealth’s Attorneys for case management software and salary compensation standardization

The proposed budget continues many of the critical funding items provided in the previous state budget (FY2023-FY2024) including:

  • Maintains the $35.34 per diem rate for housing state inmates in county jails
  • Maintains the court security reimbursement rate at $15/hour. To be eligible for this enhanced rate, deputies providing services must be paid at least $10/hour
  • Continues to fund the Outlier Audit Assistance Program at $250,000 per year and provides $2.25 million per year to keep county clerk and sheriff audit costs at 50 percent

Chair Petrie also released a separate appropriation bill, HB 1, that includes $1.74 billion in one-time investments in critical infrastructure, economic development and the state’s pension liability. The one-time investments will be funded out of the Budget Reserve Trust Fund (also referred to as the Rainy Day Fund), which is estimated at $3.7 billion.

HB 1 proposes $450 million ($175 million in FY2024 and $275 million in FY2025) for the Government Resources Accelerating Needed Transformation (GRANT) Program, also referred to as the HB 9 program that passed during the 2023 legislative session. This grant program was established to provide matching funds to local governments and nonprofits to leverage the unprecedented amount of federal funding available for energy communities.

Additional one-time funding included in the bill:

  • $75 million in FY2025 and FY2026 for drinking water and wastewater grants
  • $75 million in FY2025 for the Kentucky Product Development Initiative program
  • $950 million in FY2025 for the unfunded pension liability in the State Police Retirement System, Kentucky Employees Retirement System Nonhazardous and Teachers’ Retirement System
  • $3.5 million in FY2024 and $15 million in FY2025 for public riverports
  • $30 million in FY2025 for two rail pilot programs
  • $11.4 million in FY2025 to provide $200,000 grants to each of the general aviation airports
  • $50 million in FY2025 for the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority Loan Pool
  • $6.4 million in FY2025 for Kentucky State Police lab equipment.

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