Kentucky General Assembly

Politics
4:56 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Celebration Honors Hackett, Hudson as Black Leaders

State Sen. Gerald Neal and Wilbur Louis Hackett Jr.
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

FRANKFORT—  Kentucky legislators and community leaders on Wednesday honored an athlete and an academic during the 10th annual Black History Month Celebration at the Capitol.

The 2013 Black History Month celebration honoree was Wilbur Louis Hackett Jr., a groundbreaking football player. He was also the 2011 Kentucky Black Sports Hall of Fame inductee who state Sen. Gerald Neal, of Louisville, said "epitomizes all that is good about sports."

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Politics
3:13 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Pension Bill Passes Senate Committee, House Still Has Hang-ups

Credit File photo

FRANKFORT — An effort to reform Kentucky's underfunded pension systems passed in its first hearing Wednesday from a state Senate committee meeting.

Senate Bill 2 stems from the recommendations of a legislative task force that met over the summer to try and solve the pension problems.

It includes a suspension of cost of living adjustments and creates a new hybrid plan that acts like a 401K with a promised rate of return.

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Politics
1:15 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

University Bonding Projects on Fast Track to Pass House This Week

Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington.
Credit J. Glover/Creative Commons

FRANKFORT — A bill authorizing bonding projects for most of Kentucky's public universities appears to have ample support to be approved this week in  the state House.

House Bill 7  authorizes more than $300 million in projects, including renovations for dorm rooms, academic buildings and football stadium renovations at the University of Kentucky.

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Politics
5:15 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Lawmakers Ready for Tax Reform Legislation, but Bill Unlikely This Session

Jerry Abramson
Credit File photo

Kentucky lawmakers seemed eager to dig into another tax reform bill this year, but the chair of the latest tax reform commission says reform isn't likely coming soon.

Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson—who chaired the commission—and Mary Lassiter, the secretary of the cabinet, addressed lawmakers on the budget committees about the recommendations of the Blue Ribbon Tax Commission.

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Politics
4:43 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Rapists Couldn't Seek Child Custody from Victims Under Kentucky House Bill

Dennis Keene, left
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

Women who produce children as a result of rape would not be obligated to share parental rights with their rapist under legislation filed Tuesday in the Kentucky House.

Kentucky, along with 34 other states, allows rapists to take their victims to court and seek these rights. 

Rep. Dennis Keene, who is sponsoring the bill, called the allowance a "loophole in Kentucky law." 

"I've got two daughters," said Keene, a Democrat from Wilder. "I wouldn't want any human being to go through that."

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Politics
1:31 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Special Taxing Districts Reforms Filed, Moving Quickly in Frankfort

Adam Edelen
Credit File photo

FRANKFORT — Efforts to reform Kentucky's laws for more than 1,000 special taxing districts—such as library boards, fire districts and sewer districts— are quickly moving this week  in the General Assembly.

The reforms were filed Tuesday as House Bill 1—which typically denotes a top priority for legislative leaders— and would create an online registry to list the special districts and their required financial paperwork. It stems from a partnership between  between state Auditor Adam Edelen and House Speaker Greg Stumbo.

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Politics
12:26 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Broadband Advocates Revive Bill That Removes Land Line Requirement

Credit Creative Commons

FRANKFORT — Advocates for more wireless and broadband options in Kentucky will once again push a bill reforming the state's telecommunications laws—specifically, removing language that requires old-school land-line service throughout the state.

Citizens for a Digital Future unveiled the legislation today, which is sponsored by state Sen. Paul Hornback, a Republican from Shelbyville.

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Politics
12:35 pm
Mon February 4, 2013

Christian Health-Sharing Bill Gaining Support

Kentucky Senate Republicans are rallying around a bill to allow a Christian health-sharing organization to continue operating in Kentucky.

Christian Care Medi-share collects dues from members, then uses those funds to pay other members' health bills. Last year, the Department of Insurance successfully argued in court that  Medi-share should be regulated like other insurance companies.  The decision effectively ended the program in Kentucky.

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Politics
6:00 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Hemp Gaining Momentum in General Assembly

Credit Adrian Cable/Creative Commons

Support is clearly growing behind Agriculture Commissioner James Comer's efforts for industrial hemp in Kentucky are growing.

Call it hempmentum.

With last week's endorsement from U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, Comer now has the majority of Kentucky's federal delegation behind him.

Both U.S. senators and half of the state's House members have publicly endorsed legalizing industrial hemp. They say Kentucky is well-suited to be a leader in growing hemp for fiber and oil.

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Politics
12:02 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

In Wake of Financial Downgrade, Kentucky Business Leaders Call for Quick Pension Reform

Credit Kentucky Chamber of Commerce

Another change in Kentucky’s financial outlook has the state’s business leaders calling on the General Assembly for immediate pension reforms.

Standard and Poor’s has changed Kentucky’s outlook to negative, citing the state's large unfunded pension obligations as the main reason.

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