Seven Ky. representatives demand to know amount of state funds g - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Seven Ky. representatives demand to know amount of state funds going to Planned Parenthood

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Seven Kentucky state representatives are renewing their calls for an investigation to determine the amount of state taxpayer dollars going to support Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky.

Rep. Robert Benvenuti, 88th District; Rep. Tim Couch, 90th District; Rep. Kim King, 55th District; Rep. Stan Lee, 45th District; Rep. David Meade, 80th District; Rep. Tim Moore, 18th District and Rep. Russell Webber, 26th District all signed a news release chastising Kentucky Auditor Adam Edelen and Treasurer Todd Hollenbach for what the release characterizes as their lack of response to their request.

"Over the summer, highly publicized videos have documented the widespread and ongoing practice by Planned Parenthood to proactively engage in the harvesting and selling of baby body parts," the release states. "Former employees have testified that this revenue-generating strategy is at the heart of Planned Parenthood's business model. Following that disturbing revelation, State Representatives learned that the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services allows significant taxpayer dollars to flow to Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky."

"Last Friday, after repeated requests to Executive Branch agencies trying to determine the amount of taxpayer dollars flowing through and from Kentucky State government to Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, seven Kentucky State Representatives wrote to Kentucky Auditor Adam Edelen and Treasurer Todd Hollenbach calling on them to investigate and audit the Cabinet for Health and Family Services," the release states. "Kentucky citizens have a legal and moral right to know with certainty how their tax dollars are being spent."

"Although these Constitutional elected officers were respectfully requested to immediately advise us of their intentions and the timeframe that their results would be forthcoming, the Auditor has refused to respond, and the Treasurer says he will not honor our requests for an investigation," the release continues.

As a result, the release states, the state legislators have released their correspondence to Edelen and Hollenbach as open letters.

Click HERE to read the letter to Kentucky Auditor Adam Edelen.

Click HERE to read the letter to Treasurer Todd Hollenbach.

The state representatives go on to call for "a fully transparent accounting" of the amount of state taxpayer funding going to Planned Parenthood, a cessation of such funding, and that state government take "affirmative steps" to ensure that state funds don't go toward organizations that engage in the sale or harvesting of baby body parts.

"Given the clear unwillingness of the Beshear administration to take these matters seriously, we have called upon Auditor Edelen and Treasurer Hollenbach to get to the bottom of who exactly is funding these atrocities," the release states. "The source of these public funds is irrelevant if Kentucky State Government is providing financial support that aids or abets in these crimes against humanity. Likewise, we remind the Executive Branch that except in emergency situations, only the Kentucky General Assembly has the constitutional authority to direct where funds, collected by the Kentucky Treasurer, will be appropriated."

WDRB News reached out to Edelen's office about the representatives' request.

"We regularly receive requests from legislators to conduct audits and special examinations," said Chief of Staff Tom Bennett. "This request will be given similar consideration, as is our standard practice."

Mark Pfeiffer, a spokesperson for Todd Hollenbach's office, says the legislators' letter was hand-delivered to the Treasurer's office late Friday, and the Treasurer's Office responded on Monday with a letter that was also hand-delivered to the legislators.

The text of the letter is as follows:

"Dear Legislators: In response to your letter of September 11th requesting an audit of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, the Treasurer's office is not authorized to perform such audits. Regards, Todd Hollenbach [signed]."

Click HERE to view a copy of the letter.

Pfeiffer told WDRB News by phone that the Treasurer's office is not responsible for performing audits.

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