Judge asks governor, AG to resolve leadership issues at U of L - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Judge asks governor, AG to resolve leadership issues at U of L

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) – A judge presiding in a lawsuit over Gov. Matt Bevin’s revamping of the University of Louisville board of trustees, expressed concern, Monday, about who is in charge right now at the university.

Attorney General Andy Beshear is suing Gov. Bevin over his move to abolish the old U of L board, and appoint a new one.

Last month Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd issued a temporary injunction, tossing out Bevin’s new board.

The problem is the old board chosen by former Gov. Steve Beshear was apparently not legally balanced both in terms of political party affiliation and racial makeup.

Shepherd says he's concerned about the question of who's in charge while the lawsuit moves forward.

He wants the two sides to at least agree on a temporary solution.

“I don't want anything this court does to adversely affect the ongoing functioning and operation of the university,” said Shepherd.

The Attorney General's office says the fix is easy. Deputy Attorney General Mitchel Denham told the judge that Bevin should fill the vacant slots on the old board, and it should to get back to work.

It's an argument Beshear himself has made before.

“I would expect all of these folks to get back together, to bury any hatchet they have, and to do their job; to do what's best for the University of Louisville,” said Beshear on July 29th.

But the governor's attorney, Steve Pitt, says it's not that easy.

“That begs the question in this case, which is the former board. Can the Governor properly appoint members of a board that he believes is not the legal board at this point in time? That's a tough issue,” Pitt told WDRB News.

 Right now, there are only four slots open on the old 17-member board, and Pitt says that is not enough to restore the legal balance of Democrats and Republicans.

“I do not believe that from a political party representation standpoint, that there will be enough vacancies, even if the governor were willing to appoint to the former board, to bring it into compliance,” he said.

So it seems, for now at least, the stalemate continues.

Judge Shepherd wants a progress report from both sides later this week.

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