NewsCovering Kentucky


Superintendents to Gov. Beshear: Veto HB 563

Posted at 6:53 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-23 18:53:17-04

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — On Wednesday, Gov. Andy Beshear will announce which education bills he's signing into law and which ones he will veto.

When it comes to House Bill 563, more commonly known as the school choice bill, public school supporters are hoping Beshear issues a veto.

"We are urging the governor to veto House Bill 563," said Houston Barber, the superintendent for Frankfort Independent Schools.

Barber and several other public-school superintendents held a press conference on Tuesday and voiced their opposition to HB 563. Their concern is that the tax credit scholarships could reduce Kentucky’s tax revenue by as much as $25 million per year. That would result in less funding for public schools.

"We cannot accept that public dollars will go to private school - private school funding, private school options," said Barber. "We believe there should be a choice - there's no doubt. But in our minds, public school funding is dedicated to just that - public school."

However, not everyone opposes the bill. School Choice supporters say they've been waiting for this for years.

"It's just about fairness," said Andrew Vandiver with EdChoice Kentucky. "Trying to make sure that low to middle-income families have the same choice and opportunities that upper-income families have."

So what will Gov. Beshear do? He hasn't revealed that answer but Gov. Beshear is a known ally of public education. He also said he will be tough on bills that harm public education.

"I believe in both our public schools and our educators and will not look favorably on bills we believe harm those systems," said Beshear.

If Gov. Beshear signs the bill, it will become law. If he issues a veto, lawmakers can override it next week.