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Guest Columns

  • Kentucky Senate update

    The second week of session saw several significant issues begin to be debated in committees. Drug abuse, weaknesses in child-protective services, and the state’s debt level were all topics of discussion. The committee process is intended to inform the legislators of the pros and cons of each bill. Lively debate accompanied each piece of legislation.

  • Redistricting among legislative items of consideration

    During the opening days of most legislative sessions in even-numbered years, the primary focus is getting bills moving through committee and readying for the governor’s budget proposal.

    As many of you may know, however, this year is somewhat different, as the General Assembly is also taking on the once-in-a-decade task of redrawing the population boundaries for itself, the Kentucky Supreme Court and the state’s six congressional seats. It’s something all states do after each Census.

  • Dropping the phony facade

  • Beshear forecasts ‘tough road’

    At the start of each legislative session in even-numbered years, the governor appears before the General Assembly twice: First, to give the State of the Commonwealth address and then, later in the month, to present a two-year budget proposal.

    Given the tough economy the country has weathered during the last several years, it wasn’t much of a surprise when Governor Beshear spent much of his first speech last week talking about the second one he will give on Jan. 17th.

  • Harris reviews State of Commonwealth address by Beshear

    The first week of the 2012 Session was a combination of the ceremonial and the new. We gaveled in on Tuesday with the traditional establishment of the membership of the Senate and approval of our chamber’s rules. Over 200 bills have already been filed in the General Assembly and will start making their way through the committee process beginning in earnest next week.

  • Rand previews 2012 Kentucky House session

    Early this week, the General Assembly returned to the Capitol to begin another legislative session, which in even-numbered years lasts for 60 days and runs through mid-April.

    Governor Beshear will help set the stage when he gives his State of the Commonwealth address this week and, later this month, presents his two-year budget proposal.  Redist-ricting, something done each decade to align the state’s legislative and Kentucky Supreme Court boundaries to changes in population, will also be a major issue in the session’s opening days.

  • Harris previews 2012 Kentucky Senate session

    As most of you are aware, the 2012 Session of the Kentucky General Assembly will gavel in at 12 noon January 3, 2012.  Being an even numbered year, this is considered a long session because legislators will be developing the two-year budget for the state.

  • We are built for great things

    Last month my husband and I went to Charlotte, N.C., one of our favorite cities.

    We stayed uptown — which I would call downtown, but what do I know? — right in the middle of all the tall buildings and skyscrapers.

    I have a confession to make. I love buildings. I mean, I love, l-o-v-e buildings, like chocoholics love chocolate and pie-aholics love pie. Well, maybe not that much, but I love architecture and design, Gothic arches and flying buttresses.

  • We have a moral responsibility to care for animals

    Two weeks ago, I was on the scene of a puppy mill raid in Henry County.  I saw hundreds of animals living in unspeakable conditions. There were dogs in crates stacked two and three high; in most cases, the animals were standing almost knee deep in a mixture of their own feces and urine. There were cats in crates with litter boxes filled to the brim in waste. They had no water and little food.

  • New Year, turkeys, gravy and grace

    My daughter Alison rues Thanksgiving 2002.
    That was her year of the perfect turkey. Prior to that, her turkeys ranged from dry to just OK.

    Then in 2002 she took a risk and brined her turkey, which turned out succulent and delicious. However, in 2003, even though she followed the same recipe, her turkey wasn’t perfect and that ruined her holiday meal.