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Guest Columns

  • Budget talks ongoing, Senate passes bills

    Long days, heated discussions, and budget negotiations marked the 13th week of the 2016 General Assembly. The Senate was in session three of the five weekdays while the Senate and House leaders used the other two days to work on budget negotiations.
    The Senate is working diligently toward a budget compromise ensuring the people of the Commonwealth are not left without a state budget at the end of the session. We do not want to waste taxpayer dollars by calling a special session.

  • Rand addresses questions about stalled budget talks

    Since House and Senate leaders announced Thursday morning that budget talks had stalled, there have understandably been many questions from the public about what happened – and what is likely to happen next.
    If the conflict could be boiled down to a single word, it would be “education.” The House believes that, in an era where there is money to meet our core needs and fully fund contributions to our two main public retirement systems, schools and universities should not be cut.

  • Pension systems gets Senate attention

    Addressing Kentucky’s underfunded pension systems was the top priority in the Senate’s version of House Bill (HB) 303, the state’s two-year budget, which passed the Kentucky Senate on March 23.

  • Legislative bodies seek common ground

    At the end of a legislative session, months of preparation and weeks of debate give way to a handful of days where the General Assembly and governor decide what will become law and what will have to wait.
    It’s a predictably busy time, especially when the budget is in the mix during even-numbered years. 

  • Massie opposes govt. war on privacy

    Occasionally politicians slip up and reveal their true intentions.  In DC, this is called “committing candor.”  While indirectly discussing his administration’s effort in the courts to force Apple to develop a software key to unlock iPhones, President Obama recently admitted this battle is not just about a single terrorist’s iPhone in San Bernardino.

  • Be alert to marijuana use

    Dear Readers,   
    Trimble County is not unlike any other community in the commonwealth or in our nation that is not at times struggling to deal with drug abuse among our youth. This is a very serious matter that is a community issue and requires everyone to be diligent in our attempts to deter our children/students from using. Marijuana is the drug that teens often start with.

  • Senate takes receipt of budget, passes bills

    After over two months of anticipation and debate, the Senate finally received the state budget bill from the House midway through the 11th week of the 2016 Kentucky General Assembly. Governor Bevin was elected in a landslide because the people of Kentucky recognized a need for financial change and fiscal responsibility. We think the upcoming budget will reflect those needs for the betterment of the Commonwealth.

  • House priorities clear as Ky. budget advances to Senate

    In one sense, Kentucky’s budget doesn’t change much from year to year. A little more than half of every state dollar, for example, goes to our schools, colleges and universities. Another fourth is dedicated to Medicaid and other health services, a little more than a tenth is spent on criminal justice and the final dime goes to everything else.
    While there is relatively little discussion in the General Assembly about those ratios, there is often lively debate on the best way to move each major area forward.

  • Local student recognition

    Dear Readers,

  • Senate awaiting House budget bill

    Not only did Friday mark the end to another busy week in the Kentucky Senate, it also was day 46 of our 60-day legislative session. We are now in the proverbial “fourth quarter” when the House and the Senate must come together to get a victory for the state of Kentucky by passing a responsible budget. After 10 weeks we are still awaiting a key “assist” from our colleagues in the House in the form of a budget bill that has yet to pass the lower chamber.