By Michael BowerRead morePublished September 16, 2018 07:08:31The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is charged with overseeing the implementation of the state’s transportation infrastructure, but it’s not always clear who’s in charge.
On a visit to the capital, where officials are still hammering out details for a new highway, Gov.
Steve Beshear told reporters that the transportation department was “in charge of transportation and I’m confident we’re going to have a safe and reliable transportation system for people.”
But he said he did not know who would oversee the state-owned Kentucky Transportation Department.
Beshear, who has said that he has no plans to run for re-election, has repeatedly touted the importance of the transportation sector to the state.
He said in his State of the State address last month that Kentucky was a leader in the nation in the number of people using its roads.
Kentucky ranks fourth in the country in traffic fatalities per capita, behind only Mississippi, New York and Connecticut.
The state ranks fourth most heavily reliant on public transportation in the US, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
In a briefing on Friday, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Cabinet said the secretary of transportation would serve as acting secretary of the agency until the next governor is elected.
But the spokeswoman said there was no specific timetable for the appointment of the new secretary.
Kentuckians have complained that the Transportation Department is in disarray, with the administration struggling to develop new routes and new ideas for building highways.
The governor, a Democrat, is leading the charge for a $2.5 billion road and bridge project that is expected to be completed by 2019.