Gov. Beshear details billions in new federal relief for Kentucky

Posted at 12:09 AM, Dec 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-30 00:09:59-05

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — Gov. Andy Beshear detailed billions in new federal funding he said will be critical to Kentucky's continued battle against the coronavirus.

At his briefing Tuesday, Gov. Beshear said the latest round of funding from Washington D.C. includes more than $2.2 billion for individual stimulus checks of $600 per person, more than $489 million to extend additional unemployment insurance benefits for 11 weeks and nearly $300 million in rent and utility assistance.

"This act didn't do everything that I hoped it would but it is of significant help to fighting this virus, to getting back on our feet and helping our families that are struggling," Gov. Beshear said.

The relief bill also includes over $1 billion in relief for education, including public and private schools and higher education. More than $289 million has been allotted for coronavirus testing, contact tracing and mitigation in Kentucky, as well as nearly $57 million for vaccine distribution.

Gov. Beshear said the funding will help Kentuckians who've been struggling with mounting debt as the pandemic has dragged on.

"If this works right it will keep people in their homes that truly can't pay their bills because of COVID," he said.

One of many Kentuckians struggling is Charity True, a mother of three boys who's been out of work since September.

"We have to live day by day just trying to figure out how to make money," True said.

She has an unresolved unemployment claim and her family can certainly use the stimulus checks, she said.

"It will help up with a little bit so we'll just pay up on bills as much as we can," she said

Gov. Beshear said he hopes Congress will consider further relief in the new year.