It seems that Ernie Fletcher decided to save the taxpayers from falling into even more debt by allowing $11 million dollars to go to a private religious school yet cut several deserving projects. Most of the projects Fletcher dropped from the $18.1-billion budget were for universities. Others included $17.5 million for repairs to Kentucky River dams and funding for a youth center in Louisville that houses foster children who are wards of the state. Fletcher even wiped out $4.9 million for the expansion and renovation of a nursing school building at Kentucky State University in Frankfort.
Fletcher also slashed $2 million from Brooklawn Child and Family Services in Louisville that the facility planned to use for replacing and repairing cottages and apartment buildings to house 106 children from around the state who need special treatment. Even much needed animal shelters got their $2.5 million cut, but the private, religious College of the Cumberlands got the whole $11 million for their pharmacy school, even though there is already a building for a rural pharmacy program and the beginnings of such a program in place at the University of Kentucky's Center for Rural Health in Hazard. The citizens of Kentucky let Mr. Fletcher know how they felt about the situation by phone calls and emails. The phone calls and e-mail messages to Gov. Ernie Fletcher's office ran 4-to-1 urging him to veto $11 million for a pharmacy building.