Welcome

Thank you for visiting paducahsun.com, the online home of The Paducah Sun.

Calendar
June 2012
S M T W T F S
27 28 29 30 31 01 02

Click here to submit an event.

State budget talks off to rocky start

By RAE HODGE Associated Press

FRANKFORT - Kentucky budget talks got off to a rancorous start Saturday as House and Senate leaders deliberated the potential renovation of Lexington's Rupp Arena.

Senate President Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, called upon House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, to allow Lexington Mayor Jim Gray testify before the General Assembly's budget conference committee on whether or not the state should throw its support behind the renovation of Rupp Arena. The aging arena is host to NCAA tournament games, basketball games and conventions.

Gray was allowed to testify and was peppered with questions about how the city of Lexington intended to pay for the project, estimated at $310 million.

While there is currently no signed agreement with the University of Kentucky on the use of Rupp Arena, Gray said the university has verbally committed to a 30-year lease. He added that money for the Rupp project will be included in Lexington's budget, which will be released on April 8.

"This is an extraordinarily strong, solid, conservative plan," said Gray "The city is willing to back this project entirely." However, Rupp Arena renovations would require the state to approve and back $65 million in bonds.

House Minority Floor Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, expressed concern over the possibility of getting the state involved before Lexington's city budget has been approved.

"As of today, as we sit here, the city of Lexington has no budget which appropriates money for this project," said Hoover.

When asked what other funding sources Lexington would use to support the project, Gray said that the project had as many as 18 funding sources including the university and the city of Lexington.

Gray assured committee members that, despite a tentative city budget, financial support would be available and risk to the state would be minimized.

"We will guarantee that the state will not be asked for any more," said Gray.

The state's Budget Conference Committee is expected by members of both chambers to continue through the weekend.

Comments made about this article - 0 Total

Comment on this article

Your comment has been submitted for approval
captcha 5444232cfdda43db9f1a80bd19290ddf
Top Classifieds
  • Lab puppies AKC reg. Champion Candlew ... Details
  • PILLOW TOPmattress sets NEW in pl ... Details
  • 125 Camo Kid's 4-Wheeler For ... Details

Most Popular
  1. Racers begin 40-day stretch away from home at Evansville
  2. Attorney: Roof's mother had heart attack during trial
  3. Obama, Trump go from insults to pleasantries
  1. Trump's pick to lead EPA born in Danville, grew up in Lexington
  2. Champion pleads guiltyto killing family members
  3. Marshall's Eaton signs with MSU
  1. Thile brings younger crowd to 'Prairie Home'
  2. Racers begin 40-day stretch away from home at Evansville
  3. Attorney: Roof's mother had heart attack during trial
Discussion

Check out these recently discussed stories and voice your opinion...