Five Things to Know Today
The depressing cynicism of Repubs’ priority bills
Given a chance to address real problems, Republican leadership instead chose to use their priority bill slots to make political statements and set up “gotcha” votes. They put their campaigns over their constituents, and wasted time and money to play political games. (Forward Kentucky)
Cold Spring becomes 19th city to approve a Fairness Ordinance
With a vote of four to one tonight, the city of Cold Spring, population 6,370, became the 19th municipality in Kentucky to approve a Fairness Ordinance, adding sexual orientation and gender identity to discrimination protections in employment, housing, and public accommodations. (Forward Kentucky)
Sen. Rand Paul: Stronger penalties, not gun control, needed to stem gun violence
Sen. Rand Paul made the comments after hearing from a host of anti-violence advocates, law enforcement officials and victims’ families Monday. (Courier-Journal)
CERS proposes change in administration with 2 boards
The County Employees Retirement System has come up with a new proposal to address its concerns over under-representation on the Kentucky Retirement Systems board. Bryanna Carroll with the Kentucky League of Cities says while CERS has 76% of the assets and make up 64% of the KRS membership, they only have 35% of the seats on the KRS board, 14% of the Actuarial Subcommittee and just 11% of the Investment Committee.
While CERS has proposed a complete split from KRS in the past, they are now proposing legislation to create a hybrid system, in which the KRS and CERS would have separate boards to administer their own systems. Both of them would be part of a new Kentucky Public Pension Authority that would provide personnel needs and perform other duties agreed upon by the two boards.
Under the proposal, each of the three organizations would have a nine-member board and the new KPPA would have four representatives each from the KRS and CERS, with the ninth member appointed by the governor from a list of four people submitted by the Legislative Research Commission. (Richmond Register)
Special election to fill Adkins’s seat is today
Voters of the 99th District will go to the polls today in the special election for state representative to complete the unexpired term of Rocky Adkins. Richard White of Morehead is the Republican candidate while Bill Redwine of Morehead is the Democratic candidate. The time remaining for the term will end on December 31.
The 99th District is comprised of Lewis, Rowan, and Elliott counties. Adkins resigned December 10 to serve as senior advisor for Gov. Andy Beshear. (Lewis County Herald)
Bill to stop ‘shenanigans’ of Medicaid drug middlemen passes Senate – A bill to address Medicaid payment issues between pharmacy benefit managers and pharmacists passed the Senate unanimously. (Forward Kentucky)
Public-assistance bill passes House – details from KY Health News – Most of the bill is aimed at cracking down on fraud, but a major part of it would provide a temporary state health-insurance option for Kentuckians who stop being eligible for Medicaid because their income exceeds 138 percent of the federal poverty level. (Forward Kentucky)
More taxing powers, including on restaurants, could be coming to Kentucky cities – Two bills were filed Friday in the General Assembly that advocates say could help ease the strain of ballooning pension payments on municipal budgets by giving cities more ways to collect money — something Louisville and others have pleaded for this session. (Forward Kentucky)
KYGA Resources on Forward Kentucky
All of these are under the KYGA20 menu on the web site.
- KYGA20 Story Page – All stories about the 2020 General Assembly on one page (go there)
- Bill Trackers – Four bill trackers covering everything filed in Frankfort, including trackers for bills that have crossed over and bills that we consider “key bills” (go there)
- Visual Key Bill Tracker – Each bill has its own row, and shows the progress of the bill through the legislative process. Updated each morning. (go there)
- Find My Legislators – Enter your address, and this tool finds all your state and federal elected officials, including contact information. (go there)
- The Legislative Process – If you are confused by how a bill becomes law in Kentucky, this simple guide will make it all clear.
- How to Be an Effective Activist – This PDF is chock-full of helpful information, including contact numbers, the basics of activism, and various tools you can use. (go there)
Not all stories on Forward Kentucky make it to the top “Five Things” section of the Forward Five! Many stories only show up in the yellow section below, which is a running list of pretty much everything published. So, be sure to scan the lower section each day as well, so you don’t miss anything.
Did you miss any of these?
Featured Content on Forward Kentucky
([new] indicates new since last Forward Five; 🔥 indicates lots of reads)
[new] Under pressure, KY House Democratic leaders dump consultant targeted by FBI – Democratic leaders in the House of Representatives said Friday they have cut ties with a campaign consultant who was targeted by the FBI and granted federal immunity as the key witness in a campaign finance case against former Democratic Party Chairman Jerry Lundergan. The move comes more than a week after Gov. Andy Beshear said he will not raise any campaign cash for candidates who use Jonathan Hurst as their consultant. (read)
Braidy fires back at Craig Bouchard in court filing, claims ousted CEO misused funds – Braidy Industries is claiming in a court filing that an internal investigation found “red flags” concerning founder Craig Bouchard’s use of company funds. (read)
🔥 Bill would protect doctors, health care workers who deny care because it violates their conscience – A bill to protect medical professionals who decline to perform procedures that violate their conscience won support from a Senate committee Thursday. (read)
Medical marijuana bill easily passes Kentucky House. It now heads to a wary Senate. – The Kentucky House overwhelmingly passed a bill Thursday that would legalize medical marijuana in Kentucky, marking significant progress for a piece of legislation that has long stalled in the legislature. (read)
‘A demagogue seeking to destroy freedom and the rule of law’ – Both sides in Trump’s impeachment trial quoted the Federalist Papers in their arguments. But Trump’s GOP is actually what the papers warned against. (read)
🔥 It’s an experiment! – Our first “State of Kentucky” show as a Facebook Live video! Take a look and let me know what you think. If enough people like it, we’ll do these 2-3 times a week. And, send your suggestions and ideas to Tips@ForwardKY.com. Thanks! (view)
🔥 [podcast] KY Wired, vape taxes, school metrics, and Suzanne Kugler – This week: KY Wired legislation, taxes on vaping, school performance metrics, and an interview with Suzanne Kugler, a Democrat running for Kentucky House in southeast Louisville. (listen)
Posts with Most Social Media Shares in Past Fourteen Days
(🔥 indicates post with surge of recent shares)
- YouTube censors Rand Paul by removing whistleblower video, and he’s not happy (1,000 shares)
- Digital strategist Beth Thorpe – Applying her talent to electing Democrats in Kentucky (1,000 shares)
- Kentucky GOP leader says Matt Bevin hoarded road funds as reelection tool (915 shares)
- House committee cuts off testimony, passes anti-abortion bill (757 shares)
- DSCC puts thumb on scales, endorses McGrath (614 shares)
- Anti-Mitch rally pix from TWO ForwardKY photographers (593 shares)
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