FRANKFORT, KY --- Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement (KVE) will become a division of the Kentucky State Police under an executive order signed this week by Gov. Steve Beshear. This returns KVE to its core mission while allowing the two agencies to combine law enforcement resources and cut costs.
Under the new division, KVE personnel will maintain their identity as the primary agents of driver and vehicle compliance and safety.
"Rigorous and focused commercial and vehicle enforcement is absolutely critical to the safety of our highways, the security of our homeland and the maintenance of our roads," said Gov. Beshear. "By folding KVE into our state police department, we're able to eliminate a layer of bureaucracy, and allow KVE to focus on vehicle and driver safety, and enforce compliance of vehicles operating in commerce."
The reorganization will allow the new division to expand hours of operation at weigh stations, in some cases doubling or tripling the hours these crucial checkpoints are open, Beshear said. Longer hours will increase the inspection and records checks of hazardous cargo, expand the use of radiological and nuclear material, and increase contact with operators and drivers.
The move also enhances critical security measures.
"The specialized training and enforcement capabilities of this agency provide an indispensable line of defense at our borders and on our roadways," said J. Michael Brown, secretary for the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet. "Since 9/11, the development of KVE into a publicly recognized branch of law enforcement has been steady and irreversible. The placement of the KVE function and officers under the umbrella of KSP will only serve to give KVE a permanent home within the law enforcement family."
"The many superb officers and personnel in KVE will continue to serve the commonwealth as they always have," said Rodney Brewer, Kentucky state police commissioner. "The agency will maintain its identity, rank-and-file officers will maintain their positions, uniforms and cars won’t change. What will change is the clarity of a renewed emphasis on their primary function and responsibility."
The reorganization is expected to save $750,000 to $1 million annually by eliminating top-level positions, reducing fuel costs, eliminating overhead costs of duplicative operations and programs, and centralizing offices and facilities. In addition, the increased operation of weigh stations is expected to bring in higher revenue, such as tax compliance, licensing and permits, and fines and fees.