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Opinion

  •  FRANKFORT- Last week in Frankfort, your elected House Republicans worked hard to promote something we all should value, transparency in government. 

    Our caucus attempted to bring the first reading on Senate Bill 45. It would require public disclosure of all retirement benefits for all current and past legislators. SB 45 passed the Senate earlier this session by a margin of 38-0, with all members voting.

    Unfortunately, the bill did not enjoy the same success in the House and we have not had an opportunity to have discussion on the floor.

  •  Before our work together on the House floor each day, I hear testimony on a wide array of issues affecting Bullitt County and the Commonwealth in several legislative committees where I hold leadership roles.

  •  By the time Bullitt Fiscal Court meets on Tuesday night, all of this discussion could be moot.

    We hope it is.

    The last time we gathered we were deeply entrenched into the affairs of the Shepherdsville City Council.

    That drama continues as a lawsuit has been filed by two councilmembers against the former and current mayor and three councilmembers.

    And, of course, that resulted in no meeting due to no quorum last week.

    So you think it’s only bad in Shepherdsville?

    Not so fast.

    Look at Hillview.

  •  Here’s a chilling fact. If all 4.3 million Kentuckians were asked to pitch in to fix the state’s $36 billion public pension problem, every man, woman and child in the commonwealth would have to pay $8,268.

    That $36 billion obligation represents the unfunded liabilities that make Kentucky’s public pension systems among the worst-funded in the United States. (An unfunded liability is the difference between the value of pension benefits promised and the value of assets a pension plan has on hand.)

  •  We will look back 25, 50, 75, and 99 years to capture glimpses of what was happening in Bullitt County in each of these years. Today we will focus on the month of February.

     

    1991 - 25 Years Ago

    George Valentine was pictured in the paper receiving congratulations from Leon Remington on his appointment as the interim school superintendent.

  •   It might have taken longer than normal, but the flu has finally started to pop up in Kentucky. Locally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports flu activity as widespread. Health officials say many of these germs are being spread by children.

    Drew Duerson, M.D., pediatrician with Kosair Children’s Hospital Medical Associates – Shepherdsville, explains why the flu likes to strike this time of year.

  •  Heated floor speeches, huge committee hearings, and the observance of Presidents’ Day highlighted the seventh week of the 2016 Session of the Kentucky General Assembly. As we have passed the halfway point of this session, the countdown begins as we in the Senate anticipate the forthcoming 2016-2018 budget bill from the House of Representatives.

    There was no shortage of bill movement in the Senate this week as we passed two of our priority bills, Senate Bill (SB) 1 and SB 5.

  •   Hollywood stars, national organizations and winter weather greeted the Kentucky General Assembly during week six of the 2016 Session. With many guests, packed committee meetings, and energetic rallies, it was another exciting week in Frankfort.

  •  Let’s clear the air. An automated, pre-recorded “robo call‚“ was made two weeks ago lying about how I voted on Senate Bill 4.

    I urge you, please, before you believe the calls, check the facts. We were taking a procedural vote, which means we were voting on rules on how to take up a topic, not on a particular issue.

    We were being pushed to vote on a procedural motion to bypass the committee system and suspend the rules to vote on a bill before it has been debated and, in some cases, even read. I don’r think that’s fair.

  •  The question is a good one... when will the circus leave town?

    There was nothing positive that could be taken from the meeting last week of the Shepherdsville City Council. And the lone winner may have been the man who started all the commotion -- former mayor Scott Ellis -- because the attention shifted quickly from his resignation to the way his position was filled.

    Over the past year, there had been a cloud hanging over the heads of Shepherdsville residents.

  •  It’s February and love is in the air! But if your new boo is someone you met online, he or she could be a scammer… especially if you haven’t yet met in person. BBB is warning those who are “looking for love” to be wary year-round, but especially around Valentine’s Day, when it may be tempting to let your guard down!

  •  See the latest scams in BBB’s February 2016 Hot Topics

    1.    BBB has received several calls about fake government grants. Scammers tell local consumers they are eligible for a federal grant, because they pay their bills on time. All they have to do is pay an upfront fee. This is a scam.

  •  The crucial work of crafting the state’s next two-year spending plan began in earnest this week as I joined my House colleagues in dissecting the details of the governor’s budget proposal that he offered on Tuesday, January 26, during a joint session of the House and Senate.

  •  It’s not time for a curtain call but there is much reason to be proud of a major, major economic development project.

    There are a lot of kudos to hand out but we’ll stop short of popping the cork on the champagne for a couple of years.

    There is no doubt that the light industrial growth along Highway 480 has been a godsend to Shepherdsville and Bullitt County.

  •  The Kentucky General Assembly completed Day 12 of the 2016 Regular Session this past Thursday. 

    The decision was made to cancel the Friday session so members could return home before the inclement weather arrived. I want to express my appreciation and gratitude to all of our dedicated transportation workers and our first responders who worked so hard to keep all of us safe this past weekend.

    Unfortunately, KSP Trooper Anson Blake Tribby was killed in an accident last Friday while attempting to offer assistance at an accident scene.

  •  OK, it wasn’t the ‘big’ one. But in our parts of the country, a dusting of snow can cause as much havoc as if it was a 20-inch dumping.

    Thanks to the road departments for the county, state and municipalities. Bullitt County roads -- be it in the county or in a city -- are always done quickly and effectively.

    Law enforcement are always there to help those in need. EMS staff face added challenges when the roads (and sidewalks) are bad.

    Dispatchers are kept busy and Emergency Management Agency is also busy.

  •  While the signups were still being taken as our deadlines passed, we know a couple of things about the May primary.

    First, there will be at least one race for everyone in Bullitt County. That will be the Democratic primary for U.S. President.

    Second, voters in the 49th District, no matter your party, will have a primary race.

    Incumbent Linda Belcher will be challenged by Paul Caccitore in the Democratic primary, a repeat of two years ago.

    And County Judge Melanie Roberts will face Jennifer Stepp in the Republican primary.

  •  FRANKFORT – With low temperatures and snowy conditions around the state, many Kentuckians could be exposed to harsh winter elements. To prepare for these conditions, Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) officials are emphasizing the importance of limiting exposure to the cold and taking other necessary steps to prevent hypothermia. Meanwhile, parents and caregivers of infants are also advised to follow safe sleep practices to keep infants warm, in order to help prevent injury or infant deaths.

  •  WASHINGTON, DC — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is issuing food safety recommendations for the Mid-Atlantic to Northeast due to the forecast for severe winter conditions.

  •  FRANKFORT – In anticipation of possible electric outages during a coming winter storm, the Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) is urging residents who lose power to exercise caution when using portable generators or clearing storm debris.

    A major storm is expected to bring heavy snow across much of Kentucky, with significant ice accumulations also possible in the southern part of the state. The wintry precipitation, accompanied by strong winds, could bring down trees, limbs and power lines.