FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP/WTVQ) – A Kentucky judge says the state’s Republican governor can reorganize some government boards when the legislature is not in session, but he can’t write new laws.
The ruling is a partial win and a partial defeat for both Republican Gov. Matt Bevin and Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear. Judge Thomas Wingate ruled Wednesday that Bevin’s order earlier this year shuffling membership requirements for some public education boards is OK. But he said Bevin’s order establishing a new appellate process for teacher disciplinary actions and certification decisions is unconstitutional because it amounts to him creating a new state law.
Beshear had sued Bevin, arguing his order earlier this summer was illegal. It’s the fourth time Beshear has taken Bevin to court. Beshear is a potential Democratic candidate for governor in 2019.
“Today’s decision is a victory for teachers and families as the trial court ruled that the governor violated Kentucky’s Constitution by attempting to control and change the certification and disciplinary process for Kentucky’s school teachers. I believe the Kentucky Supreme Court will find the governor broke more laws when this matter is appealed. The governor simply cannot rewrite law through executive order,” said Attorney General Beshear.