What to Watch Thursday: Map negotiations; pseudoephedrine and hemp

01/19/2012 05:53 AM

The Senate and the House have drawn the lines. Now it’s trading time.

Each chamber approved different versions of congressional district lines for the next decade. And those maps have some key differences, most notably:

  • whether Ashland/Boyd County go from the 4th to 5th Districts
  • whether Owensboro/Daviess County goes in the 2nd or the 1st District
  • and which counties (or parts of counties) the 6th District loses to shed its excess population.

Negotiations kick into high gear Thursday now that the Senate approved its version Wednesday afternoon. The House meets at 10 a.m. instead of its usual 2 p.m. The issue heads into a conference committee for negotiators to hammer out some sort of compromise.

And they’re on the clock on this issue. The candidate filing deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Jan. 31, so prospective candidates need to know soon what district they’d be running in.

The House and Senate seem to be poised to accept each chamber’s map. But Democratic activists in Lexington have started an online protest of the Senate’s map that essentially booted Democratic Sen. Kathy Stein out of the Lexington district she represents and into a new northeastern district simply by changing the district’s number.

Senate panel takes up pseudoephedrine bill

Last week, the Senate and House Judiciary Committees heard testimony from national law enforcement and drug experts about the effectiveness of requiring prescriptions for cold medicines containing pseudoephedrine.

This week, Senate Bill 50 is up for debate and public comment in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The bill is sponsored by the committee’s chairman Sen. Tom Jensen, R-London. It would exempt liquid gel caps from the prescription requirement.

The committee meets at 10 a.m.

Public push to legalize industrial hemp

Republican Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and two Democratic lawmakers — Sen. Joey Pendleton of Hopkinsville and Rep. Richard Henderson of Jeffersonville — will headline a rally for legislation to legalize industrial hemp.

Comer made his case for it during an interview with Pure Politics last fall

The press conference is scheduled for the Capitol Rotunda at 3:30 p.m.


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