Politics & Government

Kentucky Supreme Court to take up Bevin’s overhaul of U of L Board of Trustees

Supreme Court chambers at the Capitol in Frankfort.
Supreme Court chambers at the Capitol in Frankfort. palcala@herald-leader.com

The Kentucky Supreme Court agreed Monday to take up the case surrounding Governor Matt Bevin’s restructuring of the University of Louisville’s board of trustees.

The state’s high court granted Attorney General Andy Beshear’s motion to transfer the case from the Kentucky Court of Appeals directly to the Supreme Court.

The case deals with an executive order Bevin signed last year abolishing U of L’s 20-member board and creating a new 13-member board. Beshear then sued, saying the governor had overstepped his authority. A circuit judge agreed and reconstituted the original board. Bevin then appealed.

Last month, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools put the university on probation, saying Bevin’s actions had threatened the school’s independence. Loss of accreditation would threaten federal funding of research and financial aid, and NCAA sports.

The legal case, though, could end up moot. The General Assembly passed Senate Bill 12 on Saturday, affirming Bevin’s executive order restructuring the board. Bevin later signed the measure into law.

The new law means Bevin’s office now has the opportunity to file a motion seeking dismissal of the case.

The Supreme Court also set a schedule for the case, saying the first legal briefs must be filed by Feb. 9 and the last briefs must be filed by March 23.

Daniel Desrochers: 502-875-3793, @drdesrochers, @BGPolitics