A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

U.S. Dept. of Labor launches new website to assist unemployment fraud victims with identity theft

The U.S. Department of Labor has launched a new website to help victims of unemployment identity theft. The agency unveiled the new website (en español) Monday to educate the public about the growing problem of unemployment identity theft and provide reporting guidance for citizens in every state. Kentucky residents who wish to report UI identity theft are advised to complete the form found on the...

National Governors Association task force steps up bipartisan momentum on infrastructure

The co-chairs of the National Governors Association (NGA)’s Economic Recovery and Revitalization Task Force discussed the vital federal-state partnership on infrastructure during a meeting with fellow Governors as they demonstrate bipartisan leadership on a key issue to post-pandemic economic recovery. Governors Andy Beshear of Kentucky and Henry McMaster of South Carolina joined Maine Governor Janet...

Appointments to state boards, commissions includes Lexington’s Crystal Wilkinson to Poet Laureate

Gov. Andy Beshear has made the following appointments to Kentucky boards and commissions: Gov. Beshear has appointed Crystal Wilkinson as the Kentucky State Poet Laureate. Crystal Wilkinson • Crystal Wilkinson of Lexington is an English professor at the University of Kentucky. She replaces Jeff Worley, whose term has expired. Ms. Wilkinson shall serve for a term expiring March 27, 2023. Gov. Beshear...

Kentucky Housing Corporation to exit state pension system, will transition to defined contribution plan

The Kentucky Housing Corporation (KHC) Board of Directors chose today to exit the Kentucky Retirement Systems (KRS). Starting July 1, KHC and its employees will no longer contribute to the state pension system. “Over the last three months, we have weighed the financial and personal impacts of each option upon the staff and KHC,” said Mike Denham, board chair. “It was a difficult decision, but...

Gov. Andy Beshear vetoes two bills that ‘undermine public education,’ signs 5 putting education first

Gov. Andy Beshear, a graduate of Kentucky public schools, has vetoed two bills that hurt educators and undermine public education. He also signed five bills that put public education first in Kentucky. “Education is how we provide better lives for all Kentuckians. It is how we build up a highly skilled workforce so we can quit chasing the jobs of the past and attract the investments and companies...

Gov. Beshear signs 10 bills focused on ‘well-being’ of Kyians, vetoes three ‘not in best interest’

Gov. Andy Beshear signed 10 bills that “prioritize the well-being and safety of all Kentuckians, with a special focus on protecting seniors and vulnerable children and families.” “There is nothing more central to governing than providing for the safety and security of our people,” said Gov. Beshear. “From day one of my administration, public protection has been a top priority on multiple...

Governor Beshear signs 13 bills — one caps cost of insulin — and vetoes five others

Gov. Andy Beshear signed House Bill 95 (HB 95), protecting the health and lives of Kentuckians with diabetes by capping the cost of insulin at $30 per 30-day supply for those with state-regulated health care plans or plans purchased on the marketplace exchange, state employees and people under group plans. Before it was sent to the Governor’s desk, HB 95 passed the Kentucky House of Representatives...

Governor makes appointments to Kentucky boards, commissions and to 49th Judicial Circuit

Gov. Andy Beshear has made the following appointments to Kentucky boards and commissions: Beshear has appointed the Honorable Mark Thurmond of Franklin to the office of Circuit Judge for the 49th Judicial Circuit, Division 1, of Kentucky. Beshear has appointed Queenie Averette, Tonya Lindsey, Amy Brady, Melissa Leath, Pamela Priddy and Thomas Wine as members of the Kentucky State Corrections Commission. • Queenie...

Legislators will be back March 29-30 for the final days of the session — and there are bills in play

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today State lawmakers returned home for a 10-day recess and will return to Frankfort March 29-30 for the final two days of the 2021 General Assembly. Those final two days are reserved for the chambers to vote on any vetoes issued by the governor. However, they can still take up any legislation they wish, so any bills and resolutions still pending are not officially dead until...

This Week at the Capitol: Budget approved (protects road fund) and a roundup of some other legislation

The biggest issue of the General Assembly’s 2021 session advanced this week as the Senate and House approved a budget to guide spending in the upcoming fiscal year. The recent work on a one-year budget was unusual because lawmakers normally craft budgets that cover two-year cycles. But with the pandemic spreading at the time budget negotiations were occurring last year, lawmakers decided to limit...

State extends tax filing deadline to May 17, in keeping with federal tax filing deadline extension

Gov. Andy Beshear has directed the Kentucky Department of Revenue to extend the 2020 Kentucky individual income tax filing deadline to May 17. This extension follows the income tax relief provisions issued March 17 by the federal Internal Revenue Service in response to delays and disruptions caused by the ongoing response to the novel coronavirus worldwide health pandemic. Individual taxpayers can...

House bill capping monthly insulin costs heads to Governor’s desk after senate withdraw’s changes

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today A House bill that would cap the monthly cost of insulin has passed its final legislative hurdle after the Senate agreed to withdraw its changes made to the legislation on Tuesday. House Bill 95, sponsored by Rep. Danny Bentley, R-Russell, would cap the monthly co-payment at $30 per month. Rep. Danny Bentley, R-Russell, sponsored a bill that will place a cap on insulin...

Attorney General unveils updates to website focused on helping sexual assault survivors, law enforcement

The Kentucky Attorney General’s office on Monday announced updates to a website dedicated to seeking justice for survivors of sexual assault. The recently re-designed website, kentuckybacklog.com, equips multi-disciplinary teams of law enforcement, prosecutors, and victim advocates with tools to aid in the investigation and prosecution of sexual assault crimes. kentuckybacklog.com also supports...

Going to House: Change in appointments to vacant U.S. Senate seats, add days to sessions

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today A companion bill to a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow the General Assembly to add days after the mandated end of a session passed a House Committee on Friday. 
Senate President Pro Tem David Givens, R-Greensburg, is sponsor of Senate Bill 181, the companion measure to House Bill 4, the constitutional amendment sponsored by House Speaker David Osborne,...

The Week at the Capitol: Just two days, but certainly two of the busiest this year — a roundup

The Kentucky Senate and House of Representatives convened only two days this week. But in terms of bills passed and the number of hours spent debating legislation, they were two of the busiest legislative days so far this year.   Bills that took steps forward in the Kentucky General Assembly this week include measures on the following topics:   Newborn protection. House Bill 155 would allow the use...

Jobless rate improves slightly across Kentucky in newly-released January 2021 unemployment report

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary January 2021 unemployment rate was 5.3%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet (EWDC). The preliminary January 2021 jobless rate was down 0.3 percentage points from December 2020 and up 1.2 percentage points from the 4.1% recorded for the state one year ago. The U.S. seasonally...

Kentucky General fund receipts increase in February, up 5.6 percent for year; road fund declines slightly

The Office of State Budget Director reported today that February’s General Fund receipts rose 4.6 percent compared to February of last year, an increase of $40.2 million. Total revenues for the month were $924.2 million, compared to $884.0 million during February 2020. Receipts have now grown 5.6 percent for the first eight months of FY21. The official revenue estimate calls for 1.4 percent revenue...

Ky. to receive $2.6 billion as part of latest COVID-19 stimulus; Congress to hold final vote Wednesday

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Gov. Andy Beshear said Kentucky should receive $2.6 billion in the latest COVID-19 stimulus program being addressed in Congress, and a record number of Kentuckians were vaccinated last week. During a Tuesday media briefing, the governor said the American Rescue Plan, as it is known, is expected to win final approval on Wednesday. “This is a transformational moment for...

Governor announces 12 communities selected for more than $692,000 to improve recreational trails

Gov. Andy Beshear has announced his selection of 12 projects totaling $692,058 to receive funding from the Recreational Trails Program (RTP), all of which will upgrade parks and recreational spaces across Kentucky. Communities selected for funding are Carroll County, Franklin County, Garrard County, Harlan County, Hart County, Henderson County, Martin County, Perry County, Shelby County, Madisonville,...

Legislative Ethics Commission enhances public access to bills lobbied during General Assembly

The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission (KLEC) has made information on which bills legislative lobbying employers are promoting or opposing newly available to the public, via KLEC’s website. While the Ethics Code since its passage in 1993 has required entities with paid legislative agents to report the particular bills on which they are lobbying, and is a matter of public record, this information...