Monday, November 26, 2012

Stumbo Pushing UPike As State School

{Frankfort, Kentucky}…House Speaker Greg Stumbo D-Prestonsburg, said Monday he would not support increased funding for higher education in Kentucky until there is a resolution for improved access to higher education for students in eastern Kentucky. Stumbo says the best option, in his opinion, is making UPike a four-year state school. Nearly a year ago, UPike President and former Governor Paul Patton pushed the idea of making UPike a public school, financed with the proceeds of coal severance taxes. The idea met opposition in the General Assembly, and Patton agreed to a compromise that would use the money for scholarships to increase college attainment in the region, but it failed in the Republican-led Senate. Governor Steve Beshear authorized spending $2,050,000 in the fiscal year that began July 1st and $2,250,000 the following year in coal severance tax receipts on a pilot scholarship program for students in nine eastern Kentucky counties.