Legislative Update – February 16, 2018

We have reached the halfway point of the 2018 Session of the Kentucky General Assembly, and we on our way to having a pension reform bill filed. We are confident that the pension proposal will reflect a significant amount of changes as a result of the feedback you, our constituents, have offered on this important subject. We also continued our work on the state budget and road plan and passed a number of bills this week.

Among the bills passed was Senate Bill (SB) 30, which is a companion bill to Marsy’s Law that lays out technicalities of the constitutional amendment. Marsy’s Law was passed by both chambers with overwhelming support earlier this session. We also passed SB 97, clarifying laws pertaining to municipal annexation.

Senate Bill 25 also passed early in the week, and I am proud to cosponsor it. This bill is another step to help local communities address “taxation without representation” problems by preventing “special districts” from raising taxes without citizen input and oversight. Senate Bill 102 relates to the evaluation of children for special education services and would require the initial evaluation and determination of a four-year-old child’s eligibility for special education services to occur within 60 calendar days of parental consent.

Senate Joint Resolution 52 encourages the Kentucky Department of Education to collaborate with the University of Kentucky to implement and bolster the Kentucky Peer Support Network Project in public schools across the Commonwealth. These programs offer incredible peer support to students with disabilities, as well as teaching essential academic and social skills to all students involved.

We also passed a number of House bills this week, some of which will now head to the Governor to be signed into law. House Bill 92 allows jail canteen profits to be used for the enhancement of jail safety and security. House Bill 84, known as “Courtney’s Law,” would help honor the wishes of organ donors who die outside of a hospital setting. The last bill to pass this week was HB 150, which would change the name of the Surplus Agricultural Commodities Advisory Committee to the Farms to Foodbanks Advisory Committee and reorganize statutes appropriately in the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.

As we continue our work on the budget and the pension proposal, I want to thank you for your input on the work of the Kentucky General Assembly. It is an honor to represent you in Frankfort.

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