House Bill 7 Adopted, to be Signed into Law

Dear Colleagues and Students,

On Wednesday, the Kentucky General Assembly overwhelmingly adopted House Bill 7. It now goes to Governor Steve Beshear for his signature.

This is, without question, an important moment in the life of our university.

It signals that we have the confidence of our state’s policymakers as we strive to find innovative avenues to earn our way forward. As importantly, it underscores our commitment to putting our undergraduate and graduate students first in everything that we do – from the classrooms and living spaces that we construct to the research space we design and build to embolden our faculty and better equip us to serve.

This legislation authorizes us to self-finance three projects, totaling $275 million.

  • A $65 million renovation and expansion of the Gatton College of Business and Economics, made possible through the generosity of donors.
  • A $100 million Science and Academic Building. UK Athletics is funding nearly two-thirds, $65 million, of this modern learning and research space -- perhaps an unprecedented move in American higher education.
  • A $110 million renovation of Commonwealth Stadium and the Nutter Training and Recruiting Center, financed completely by Athletics.

The Governor, scores of legislators, our students, faculty, and staff; and our alumni and friends throughout the Commonwealth have played a significant role in the success of this legislation. Much has been accomplished and we should all take a moment to reflect on this important moment. But there is much more still to do.

Buildings must be planned for, designed and constructed. Numerous discussions and planning sessions – with faculty, staff and students – will have to take place to ensure that these structures accomplish our short-term goals, but with the future in mind. We must contemplate not only what students and faculty need today, but we must address fundamental questions such as what do education, science and research look like far into the future.

We have seen, together, what we can do. I am excited about what lies ahead. Thank you for all you have done to make this moment possible.

Eli Capilouto