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Guest Columns

  • Senate passes bills on education, mutual aid

    We are now a quarter way through session. Bills are flowing through the committee process and arriving on the Senate floor for consideration before the entire chamber.

    Three bills won passage this week and will now head to the House of Representatives. Senate Bill 55 allows for interstate mutual aid agreements among first-responders and other emergency response personnel. That is to say, that if an emergency occurs near local or state borders, emergency personnel can respond regardless of their home base.

  • Relieving health issues caused by stress

    Are you aware that stress is anything that interrupts balance in your body? The impact of this can be devastating. A person normally stores energy for the body’s ongoing daily functions.

    These reserves are mobilized in a crisis. This reaction to stress is called the Fight or Flight
    Response; it has a role to enable the body to have the ability to deal with a temporary life-and-death threat. In an emergency situation, different organ systems are activated and others are inhibited. 

  • Don’t be grudgin’ and judgin’

    There’s this woman. I’ve only met her in person two or three times, but she and I belong to the same professional organization of women authors and speakers, so I see her name continually. About 10 or so years ago she did something that I thought was reprehensible and I took great pleasure in knowing it’s one of God’s top 10 “thou shalt nots” and that she would one day reap what she had sown. That’s not just karma; that’s biblical - a double whammy.

  • Stop playing games to resolve differences

    When two people argue, it means they are looking at two different perspectives of a situation.

  • Sign language: messages from God

    For the most part I’m not a fan of the “Messages from God” billboards (“What part of ‘Thou Shalt Not’ didn’t you understand?” “Keep using my name in vain and I’ll make rush hour longer,” “You think it’s hot here?”).

    Launched a few years ago by a Fort Lauderdale advertising agency, there are 17 messages in all, each one signed simply “God.” I do, however, like the one that says, “Well, you did ask for a sign.” That always makes me laugh.

  • 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.