Former lawmaker Joe Meyer elected mayor of Covington; reflects back on issues in General Assembly which led to eventual GOP takeover
11/11/2016 12:59 PM
COVINGTON – Former Democratic 65th district representative and 23rd district state senator Joe Meyer defeated incumbent Sherry Carran in the Covington mayoral race on Tuesday, earning his first elected office since he left the state Senate in 1996.
Meyer served in the House from 1982-88 before being elected to two terms in the Senate where he served as chair of the Senate State and Local Government Committee and as chair of the Senate Education Committee.
After leaving the Senate, Meyer served in a number of positions including senior policy advisor to Governor Steve Beshear and Auditor Crit Luallen.
Meyer says that, in his opinion, the tide began to turn against Democrats in the Senate during his second term in the chamber which culminated in the 2016 General Election with a total GOP takeover of the General Assembly.
Meyer says one big factor which led to the Republican rise in numbers were tough decisions made in the early 1990’s concerning education reform.
“The 1990 Education Reform is something that was absolutely fundamental to Kentucky’s future welfare and was hard fought, but was a very difficult vote because you were making systems across the state change and because we raised taxes to do it,” Meyer said. “Both of those elements generate kickback.”
Meyer, who said that he was surprised that it took as long as it did for Republicans to finally flip the House, said moving forward, Kentucky Democrats need to deliver a consistent and concise message to voters of the commonwealth.
“Democrats need to reclaim their message, and they need to run as Democrats, not Republican-like,” he said. “If I’m given a choice between a Republican and a Republican like, you know, I want the real thing.”
Meyer wants to remove pay for parking kiosks in the Mainstrasse shopping and restaurant district which he says keeps people away from the area. He also wants to see investment and development in more areas of the city, as well as look at ways to improve education in schools, and look at ways to lower crime rates.
In Covington, the mayor, is paid $27,000 a year and is one of five votes on the commission and also runs the commission meetings as well as the agenda.
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