From Frankfort

State Senate majority grows by one as votes are tallied in special election

03/03/2015 09:49 PM

Senate Republicans have grown their majority to 27 members with the election of Steve West to the 27th Senate District seat Tuesday. West defeated Democrat Kelly Caudill in the special election with 5,355 votes to Caudill’s 4,489, according to the secretary of state’s unofficial vote count. The election was called to replace newly sworn-in Rowan County Judge-Executive Walter Blevins, who vacated the seat just before the legislative session convened in January. West, a Millersburg real estate attorney and cattle farmer, walks... Read more 

$132.5 million bond for UK medical research center heads to governor

03/03/2015 09:12 PM

FRANKFORT – Despite the fact that it’s a non-budget year, the state Senate has passed legislation to fund half the cost of a multi-million dollar research building at the University of Kentucky. House Bill 298, sponsored by Rep. Rick Rand, D-Bedford, authorizes the issuance of $132.5 million in bonds for construction of the building. The University of Kentucky will fund the other half of the cost as well as any other related expenses. The building, which will be located along... Read more 

Transportation panel may explore driving certificates for undocumented immigrants during interim

03/03/2015 06:20 PM

FRANKFORT — Undocumented immigrants could be granted driving certificates under a bill its sponsor hopes will be studied further before next year’s legislative session. The House Transportation Committee considered House Bill 267, sponsored by Rep. Larry Clark, Tuesday but took no vote on the measure. HB 267 would make driving certificates available to immigrants who’ve resided in Kentucky for three years, with those older than 21 driving on an instructional permit for 30 days and those younger than 21 using the... Read more 

Legislation retooling Cincinnati/N.Ky. International Airport board clears House committee

03/03/2015 03:19 PM

FRANKFORT — A bill revamping membership of the board governing the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport cleared the House Transportation Committee Tuesday. House Bill 208, sponsored by Rep. Diane St. Onge, advanced on a 17-1-3 vote. The legislation would expand voting membership of the Kenton County Airport Board from seven to 13, and rather than allow the judge-executive of Kenton County to have complete appointment power over the board, the legislation would ensure Kentucky’s governor and judge-executives in Boone, Campbell and Grant... Read more 

"Beer bill" protecting the three-tier system of brewing, distributing and selling passes Senate committee

03/03/2015 02:03 PM

FRANKFORT — A bill which would prevent breweries from holding distribution and retail licenses, bringing them in line with the three-tiered approach for companies making, shipping and selling wines and distilled spirits, was passed by a Senate panel Tuesday. House Bill 168, sponsored by Speaker of the House Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, would change a law that allows out-of-state brewers to own their own distributors. Since Prohibition, in-state brewers have not been allowed to own their own distributors. Kentucky uses a three-tier system... Read more 

Bill creating civil protective orders for dating partners heads to Senate floor

03/03/2015 11:39 AM

FRANKFORT — Legislation creating a new class of protective orders for partners in dating relationships passed the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday, clearing one of its last procedural hurdles en route to Gov. Steve Beshear’s desk. The judiciary panel, which approved House Bill 8 by 7-0-1 vote, amended the bill to further differentiate between the civil protective orders established in the legislation and those sought in familial disputes. That means if the Senate approves HB 8, the House must OK the committee’s... Read more 

Telecomm deregulation becomes first bill to pass both chambers

03/02/2015 11:23 PM

FRANKFORT – Legislation to reform telecommunication regulations in the commonwealth became the first bill to be passed by both the House and Senate during the 2015 General Assembly. House Bill 152, sponsored by Rep. Rick Rand, D-Bedford, was passed by a 30-3 vote on Monday night by the Senate. The bill, known as the “AT&T bill”, would remove requirements that telephone companies offer basic landline service in urban areas. Sen. Paul Hornback who sponsored similar legislation the past three years, says that the... Read more 

Stumbo’s "beer bill" poised to clear Senate committee a day after Anheuser-Busch hits airwaves

03/02/2015 08:43 PM

FRANKFORT — The day before a Senate committee is set to hear a bill Anheuser-Busch says will cost nearly 200 jobs at its distribution centers, the beer maker reinforced that point in a one-minute television ad that began airing Monday. But despite Anheuser-Busch’s public pressure, the Senate Licensing, Occupations and Administrative Regulations Committee’s chairman says House Bill 168 will be heard without revision Tuesday. Sen. John Schickel, whose panel is scheduled to take up HB 168 during its 10 a.m. meeting,... Read more 

Bill to add Krabbe disease tests to new born screenings passes House committee

03/02/2015 04:37 PM

FRANKFORT — Twenty-two months ago, Nathan and Sarai Taylor had what they thought was a healthy newborn daughter named Anna who had passed all of the newborn screening tests. However, when Anna was four months old, she showed signs of irritability, stopped eating and began missing her milestones. After further testing, Anna was diagnosed with Krabbe disease, a neurological disorder where the brain shuts down. It has caused Anna to lose her sight, ability to eat, speak and move. The life expectancy... Read more 

Get a crash cart, stat: Status update on bills heading into lawmakers' last full week of work

03/01/2015 03:00 PM

Only a fraction of the 757 bills filed in this year’s short session have a shot to become law as legislators enter their final full week of work. The House and Senate have sent a combined 189 pieces of legislation to the other chamber thus far, but only one item, a resolution adjourning the first part of the session in January and convening the second in February, has cleared both chambers. That will change this week with a few bills, such... Read more 

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