Kentucky gov wants to reward frontline workers who stayed on job

Gov. Andy Beshear signaled Thursday that he desires to reward frontline employees in Kentucky who stayed on the job all through the pandemic by giving them bonuses.

Beshear floated the proposal earlier this week, saying he desires to make use of $400 million of the state’s share of federal pandemic support to supply well being care employees and others with the additional pay subsequent 12 months.

On Thursday, the governor delved deeper into his proposal for rewarding employees who put themselves in danger all through the general public well being disaster to supply important companies.

“My suggestion, because it goes over, goes to restrict this for these important employees that we in the end come to consensus on which have labored two full years — the 2 years of the pandemic — in that very same job or for a similar employer,” he stated at a information convention.

Within the coming days, the Democratic governor intends to ship a framework of his proposal to the state’s Republican-dominated legislature. He is asking {that a} “working group” fill within the particulars — together with who would qualify and the way a lot they’d obtain. That group ought to embrace lawmakers and officers from his administration, he stated.

“There will likely be loads to determine, loads to speak about,” Beshear stated.

Lawmakers would make the ultimate determination on appropriating the federal help. The state should observe federal steerage in spending the pandemic support.

Beshear stated Thursday that he sees the bonuses going to employees who supplied important companies, together with having appreciable interplay with the general public. He once more talked about well being care workers, emergency responders, educators, grocery retailer employees and manufacturing unit employees employed by corporations deemed important in the course of the pandemic.

He additionally talked about a bigger pool of employees Thursday who needs to be thought-about, together with these working at farming operations, sanitation workers and employees who stored the electrical grid “up and operating.” On the federal government aspect, he stated, state police and native well being division personnel needs to be included.

Many Kentucky hospitals have struggled with persistent staffing shortages to deal with an inflow of coronavirus sufferers. Some outstanding Senate Republicans urged the governor to name lawmakers right into a particular legislative session this 12 months to direct fast support to hospitals to beat staffing woes.

Beshear has stated the federal cash received’t be obtainable till subsequent 12 months, when lawmakers are again in common session. He is hoping the promise of bonuses encourages well being care employees to remain of their present jobs and resist any temptation to go elsewhere for greater pay.

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