Louisville Metro Councilman Kevin Kramer

Politics
5:35 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Greater Louisville Inc. Opposes Mayor Greg Fischer's LG&E Fee

Greater Louisville Inc.

Calling Mayor Greg Fischer's proposed LG&E franchise fee a "burdensome tax" Greater Louisville Inc. is urging its business members to oppose the idea ahead of a key vote.

The mayor wants a 3 percent fee on natural gas in order to generate a net worth of $4.8 million, which will go towards a more public safety spending.

According to Fischer's office the gas fee would add about $20 per year to an average household's bill.

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Politics
2:07 pm
Sat May 24, 2014

Council Republicans Plan to Contest Louisville Mayor's 'New Tax'

Councilman Kevin Kramer, R-11, says the GOP plans to oppose Mayor Fischer's LG&E franchise fee

A majority of the Louisville Metro Council praised Mayor Greg Fischer's 2014-15 budget proposal for investments in public safety, capitol projects and infrastructure.

But Republican lawmakers who pushed for more police officers in past budgets say they oppose the proposed 3 percent LG&E franchise fee as a "new tax" by the Fischer administration.

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Politics
8:00 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer Seeks Changes to 'Ban The Box' Ahead of Metro Council Vote

Credit Shutterstock

Threatening a veto, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer's office is proposing a half dozen exemptions to the ban the box ordinance ahead of Metro Council members voting on the proposal Thursday.

The bill prohibits the city and its private contractors from asking about an applicant's conviction history until it has been determined they're qualified for the job.

But the mayor's office has objected to the ordinance on a number of fronts.

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Politics
8:59 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Louisville Metro Council Republicans Propose 'Sweeping Changes' to Discretionary Funds

Louisville Metro Council Republicans unveil discretionary spending changes.
Credit Phillip M. Bailey

Calling past efforts to reform discretionary spending practices watered down, Louisville Metro Council Republicans unveiled a series of "sweeping changes" to neighborhood development funds.

The proposals come in the wake of Democratic Councilwoman Barbara Shanklin's expulsion trial. Shanklin avoided removal over charges of alleged misconduct and unethical use of taxpayer money by just one vote.

Among the changes being touted by GOP members are for the majority of discretionary funds to be used on capital projects rather than towards non-profit groups.

Each council members receives $75,000 in Neighborhood Development Funds, $100,000 in Capital Infrastructure Funds and $30,000 for office expenses.

Republicans hold a nine-member minority on the council, but are seeking to cap the neighborhood accounts at $15,000 while allocating the rest for infrastructure needs.

Councilman Ken Fleming, R-7, says past efforts to amend spending rules have been ineffective and too slow, adding that GOP lawmakers believe it’s important to act now in order to restore the public's trust.

"We decided after what happened over these past two weeks to go ahead and make this more permanent, more accountable and more transparent," he says. "We want to have the strongest confidence that the public has in us as well as making sure that we elevate and solidify the trust has in using taxpayer’s money."

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Politics
4:00 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Kramer Introduces Pledge Against Texting While Driving

Louisville Metro Councilman Kevin Kramer, R-11, is hoping to raise awareness about the continued problem of distracted driving.

Kramer has introduced a resolution to support AT&T’s “It Can Wait” campaign. The non-binding measure is aimed at curbing texting while driving, particularly among teenagers. Last year, a state law banning texting while driving took effect but state police have said the law is difficult to enforce.

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Politics
5:01 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Ed Hart: Fischer, Beshear Dropped Ball on Kentucky Kingdom

File photo

Louisville businessman Ed Hart is dismayed at the delays in reopening Kentucky Kingdom, and he puts much of the blame on Mayor Greg Fischer and Governor Steve Beshear.

For the past few months, an investment group called Bluegrass Boardwalk Inc. has been trying to salvage the former amusement park. But officials confirmed this week that its planned reopening for next year is no longer an option because of serious  disrepair. The group's investors now say the earliest the park can open is 2014.

Two years ago, Six Flags abandoned the site due to bankruptcy and the state fair board spent almost 18 months negotiating with Hart to reopen the park. But those talks failed for reasons that have not been released.

Hart says the mayor and governor need to take a greater role in getting one of the city’s chief tourist attractions running again instead of offering excuses.

"I can't read their minds. The mayor, the governor, his people, legislators—everybody says: ‘absolutely we want Kentucky Kingdom reopened.’ Yet they do nothing about it. It’s the typical, political and bureaucratic words and no deeds,” he says. "The fair board keeps saying that opening Kentucky Kingdom is a number one priority. They said it in 2010, 2011 and again in 2012. Can you imagine how long it would take to open up if it wasn't their number one priority? It's ludicrous."

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