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Opinion

  •  As a school community, we have a lot to be happy about. 

    We have great schools filled with bright, energetic teachers; thoughtful, dedicated leaders; well mannered, curious, and motivated students; superior support staff; and wonderful volunteers. 

    Our facilities are in very good, bordering on great, shape. Our transportation fleet is safe, efficient, and effective. 

    Our assessment results are on the rise - moving up 68 places in just eight years and surpassing many traditionally high performing school districts. 

  •  It is with great pleasure, albeit a little delayed, that we introduce some new health department employees. 

    There are four new employees over the past year; Brittany Bell, Teresa Catlett, Tesha Collins, and Teresa Murphy. 

    First onboard was Brittany Bell, MPH, CPH was hired on as an Epidemiologist in January 2015. She graduated with a Master’s in Public Health from University of Louisville with a concentration in Epidemiology. 

    She is a Bullitt County native and a graduate of Bullitt Central High School.

  •  I am pleased to report that the House’s budget process is on track and on time, with a vote on our proposal for the state’s next two-year spending plan expected early next week.

    While final details are still being ironed out, I can assure you that we will present a fiscally responsible plan that will take into account the considerable revenue growth the Commonwealth is experiencing -- including more than $908 million expected between now and the end of fiscal year 2018.

  •  Not only did Friday mark the end to another busy week in the Kentucky Senate, it also was day 46 of our 60-day legislative session. We are now in the proverbial fourth quarter when the House and the Senate must come together to get a victory for the state of Kentucky by passing a responsible budget. 

    After 10 weeks we are still awaiting a key assist from our colleagues in the House in the form of a budget bill that has yet to pass the lower chamber.

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

     

    1.    Local consumers are receiving postcards from the Compliance Division. The postcard says to “please call immediately” to avoid potential fees or penalties. A local consumer said he called and was told to pay $70 in order to “clear up a matter.” This is a scam. 

  •   FRANKFORT – As Kentuckians prepare to celebrate one of the country’s most popular holidays, the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety (KOHS) and Kentucky State Police (KSP) are reminding drivers to make plans before your St. Patrick’s Day party begins.

  •  As citizens of this Commonwealth, state universities play a huge role in our lives, not only through our love of college sports but also the important job of educating our children. 

    Unfortunately, time and time again we hear the struggles of students who are drowning in debt because of student loans they simply cannot pay back. 

    Nationally, students owe over $1.3 trillion dollars in debt.

  •  High school students need more affordable pathways to college and workforce training, and Kentucky’s industries need more highly skilled, well-trained workers to expand their businesses as the economy improves.

    Last week, I joined House leaders in targeting these urgent issues through a bold new plan that would allow thousands of Kentucky’s high school students to emerge from a state community and technical college both career-ready and debt-free.

  •  If you are a member of Bullitt Fiscal Court, you have a difficult decision to make on this Wednesday morning.

    Do I take hold of a situation that really isn’t all my responsibility and agree to pay over $638,000 to the state of Kentucky to resolve a deficit incurred by the sheriff’s office over the past five years?

    Or do I not pay the 34 monthly installments of $14,000 and a final balloon payment of nearly $163,000 and risk the loss of regular law enforcement patrol by the sheriff’s office?

  •  FRANKFORT — The Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) is advising parents of college students to make sure their child is up-to-date on vaccination for protection against mumps, an infectious disease that has been reported recently at Kentucky universities – as well as other college campuses around the country.

  •  Bullitt County was founded in 1796.  Bullitt County was formed from parts of Jefferson County and Nelson County.  Its location is in the western Bluegrass Region known as the knobs.

    The first people to inhabit this area were the Paleo Indians.  They were hunters and some of the Native American Indians were Shawnee and Cherokee. 

    This area had mineral springs or salt licks, where big game of mammoth and bison once roamed.  This area was considered the Indians homeland and hunting grounds.

  •  As the Senate eagerly awaits a budget proposal from the House of Representatives, we are busy passing bills both out of committee and out of the Senate to send to our House colleagues during the eighth week of the 2016 Kentucky General Assembly.

    Several meaningful bills passed the Senate this week and will now move on for consideration in the House of Representatives.

  •  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.