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Columns

  • Efforts in the battle against opioid addiction

    By Kentucky Justice

    Secretary John Tilley

    The numbers aren’t final yet, but 2017 will likely be another record-breaking year for overdose deaths in Kentucky. That’s astonishing when you consider that more than 1,400 of our friends, relatives and neighbors lost their lives to opioids in 2016. The suffering has been immense. Nearly every family has been impacted by this scourge. Our foster care system, our courts, our prisons and jails, and our first responders are near the breaking point.

  • Pension dispute lacking in facts, not funding

    Political leaders are justifiably pessimistic that throwing more dollars – even record amounts – at Kentucky’s teetering public-pension systems is not some puff of magic that will allow a detour to avoid tough decisions about how retirement benefits are determined and dispersed.

    Senate Bill 1 (SB 1), the legislature’s long-awaited pension proposal released at a recent Senate State and Local Government Committee meeting, attempts to make some of those difficult, but necessary, judgments.

  • Don’t blame deputy in school shooting

    By David B. Smith

    I retired eight years ago after 18 years with a large police department located in the Socialist Republic of Puget Sound. During those 18 years, I pointed my gun at someone only one time. In this instance, I holstered my weapon and pepper sprayed the suspect in a burglary because I was afraid another officer might shoot him. Spending the last ten years as a detective, I was not often in danger or the line of fire and still tell people I was much more scared when I was landing on the pitching deck of the USS America on a dark night.

  • Senate takes up health care, liquor sales

    By Sen. Jimmy Higdon

    Receiving the Commonwealth’s two-year, multi-billion dollar budget plan from our colleagues in the House highlighted one of our busiest weeks yet in the Senate as we reached the two-thirds point of the 2018 Session of the Kentucky General Assembly. Hundreds of visitors from all corners of Kentucky packed committee hearings and rallied for important causes in a week that saw no shortage of legislative activity.

  • God’s peace can ease minds during this endless flow of negativity
  • Pension reform bill completed, Senate turns to other matters

    By Sen. Jimmy Higdon

    After weeks of anticipation and months of discussions and meetings with stakeholders, the Kentucky Senate Majority Caucus filed its comprehensive pension reform bill as Senate Bill (SB) 1 on Tuesday, Feb. 20.

    While SB 1 marked the filing of one of the most significant pieces of legislation of the 2018 Session, we continued to hold committee meetings and voted bills out of the Senate chamber, making for another busy week in Frankfort.

  • Optometry bill about fear mongering, protectionism

    As House members struggle to unite on serious issues involving public-pension reform and budget cuts, they’ve had no problem coming together with shutter-speed agreement to pass legislation protecting the powerful optometric industry from online innovators.

    One reason – and it’s not the first time we’ve seen this – is lots of cold hard cash.

  • Helping law enforcement combat opioid and drug abuse

    By Mitch McConnell 

    On an average day, 175 Americans die from drug overdoses. Families in Kentucky and throughout the nation are bravely confronting substance abuse – including heroin, prescription drugs, and an alarming resurgence of methamphetamine – and law enforcement is working hard to help. With our communities in crisis, I remain committed to finding comprehensive solutions to end this suffering through coordinated prevention, treatment, and law enforcement efforts.

  • Pension bill filed, other bills on the move

    Rep. Daniel Elliott

    While several critical bills have moved through the House, the past week was largely driven by one item: pensions.

    Senate Bill 1 has been filed, and is the result of ongoing work over the better part of the last year to save the pension systems and protect the retirement of our teachers, law enforcement, and other state workers. This measure puts Kentucky on track to eliminate the unfunded liability, and ensures that a good retirement is available for all current and future employees.

  • Audit legislation passes Senate committee

    Kentucky Auditor of Public Accounts

    A bill supported by Mike Harmon, Kentucky’s 47th Auditor of Public Accounts, was approved Feb. 21 in Frankfort by the Senate Standing Committee on State and Local Government.

    Senate Bill 144, sponsored by Sen. Stan Humphries, R-Cadiz, would help reduce audit costs on annual audits for county sheriffs and county clerks, while at the same time still holding them accountable to the taxpayers.