Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Greg Stumbo Demands Balance on University Boards
Attorney General Greg Stumbo today notified Governor Ernie Fletcher that his Trustee appointments to the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville run afoul of Kentucky law.
In a letter to the Governor, Stumbo cited state statutes requiring Trustee appointees to “reflect proportional representation of the two leading political parties of the Commonwealth based upon the state’s voter registration…” Fletcher has appointed a total of nineteen (19) University Trustees since 2004, of whom fifteen (15) are Republican and four (4) are Democrat, according to the nonpartisan Legislative Research Commission. (Click here to see attached letter: http://tinyurl.com/2pt4xq).
“Kentucky’s citizens are guaranteed equal representation on the Boards of our flagship universities,” said Attorney General Stumbo. “I will enforce the law to provide the balance and fairness Kentucky needs and deserves.”
In his letter to Governor Fletcher, Stumbo said, “In light of the clarity of the controlling law, I’m sure you share my desire to avoid expending taxpayer dollars in a lawsuit to oust the improperly appointed board members. I therefore ask that you call upon the unqualified board members you have appointed to resign from their positions and return these boards to the statutorily required proportional representation that accurately reflects the balance of political representation chosen by Kentucky citizens.”
According to a Legislative Research Commission survey, 56.9% of Kentucky citizens are registered as Democrats, 36.6% are registered as Republicans, and 6.5% are registered under other political designations.
The survey extrapolates from these figures that of the seventeen (17) appointed members to the Board of Trustees of the University of Louisville, proportional representation requires ten (10) members to be Democrats and seven (7) Republicans. Similarly, of the sixteen (16) appointed members of the Board of Trustees of the University of Kentucky, ten (10) should be Democrats and six (6) Republicans.
“The citizens of Kentucky are entitled to representation on these Boards that faithfully reflects their own political choices and makeup, contended Stumbo. “By creating a Republican majority among the gubernatorial appointees to those boards, you have denied the people their guaranteed voice.”
The Attorney General’s letter requests that the Governor comply with the law within ten (10) days, to avoid the need for litigation to enforce the requirement of fair and equal political representation.