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Kentucky Association of Counties


County Champion


Start of legislative session sees budget proposal, candidate filing deadline at the forefront

By the KACo Advocacy Team
Lawmakers are back in Frankfort for “long” session.

The 60-working-day session opened Tuesday, and already more than 200 bills have been filed.  

With lawmakers spending much of the week in ethics and other training sessions, they’ve also had an eye on today's filing deadline for the 2024 election. The full House and all odd-numbered Senate districts are up for re-election.  

A long session historically has anywhere from 800 to more than 1,000 bills filed by the time it’s over. Often, legislators will wait until the filing deadline passes before proposing what could be perceived as controversial legislation.  

Gov. Andy Beshear's budget bills were filed Wednesday, a few hours before his State of the Commonwealth address to the General Assembly. Highlights of the Governor’s budget proposal include:  

  • $500 million in FY2025 to provide additional funding for the Drinking Water and Wastewater Grant program 
  • $100 million in FY2025 for the HB 9 GRANT program that was piloted last session 
  • $25 million in FY2025 and FY2026 for a county and city bridge improvement program 
  • $75 million in FY2024 to replenish the EKSAFE funds 
  • $35 million in FY2025 for a body armor grant program for local law enforcement and first responders 
  • $10 million in FY2025 for a volunteer fire department grant program 

All appropriations bills must start in the House. We await the House’s version of the state budget, expected in the next two weeks, where it will be debated, eventually passed and sent on to the Senate, where they will get a chance to insert their budget priorities. 

Once any differences between the House and Senate versions are resolved, the approved budget will be forwarded to the Governor, almost certainly with time left on the calendar to override any possible vetoes. 

County officials are encouraged to get involved with KACo and legislative matters: 

  • Stay engaged with your legislators throughout the session on issues important to your county. You can find your legislator and their contact information here.   
  • Invite them to join you at the annual County Officials Legislative Reception on Feb. 21 at KACo. 
  • Sign up here to receive KACo text alerts.  
  • Follow KACo on social media.  
  • We will keep you informed each week in our newsletter.  

Email any questions or feedback from legislators to the KACo advocacy team: or Thanks to all of you who text, email and call with information about what’s happening in your county or how a bill would impact your community.  

Because legislative activity can happen quickly in Frankfort, KACo sends out legislative alerts to our members when urgent calls are needed to your senator or representative. We thank you in advance for taking action when it’s needed.

KACo is proud to help tell the county story on behalf of our members. Thank you for all you do every day, and particularly during the legislative session, to advocate on behalf of your communities and the commonwealth. 

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