GLI Legislative Update: Week 7

A big week in the Kentucky General Assembly! Several bills received final passage and many more are on deck to the Governor’s desk. Legislators get to head back to their home districts and enjoy a slower pace during the Veto Days. Members will resume the final days of the session on March 29 and Sine Die on March 30.

Fun Fact: Sine Die is Latin for “without day.”

Senate Bill 1, referred to as the “Let Teachers Teach” bill and sponsored by Sen. Mike Wilson, is the most comprehensive education reform bill our Commonwealth has seen in a long time and will align Kentucky’s educational standards with the federal Every Student Succeeds Act. SB 1 will also return much of the power back to individual school districts. GLI supports high academic standards for our students in order to create a workforce that will meet the demands of the future.

SB1 passed 94-0 in the House of Representatives on Wednesday after passing 35-0 out of the Senate last month. This bill is not on its way to the Governor’s desk for his signature.

sb1 total

Senate Bill 120, sponsored by Sen. Whitney Westerfield, seeks to cut down on recidivism and improve transition after time served. This bipartisan measure will improve Kentucky’s workforce shortage by allowing individuals with a criminal record to have opportunities for employment, pay taxes and support their families. One important piece of this bill includes options for employers with occupational licensing boards and the ability to consider workers with prior offenses. A board maintains the ability to deny a license as they see fit, and SB 120 establishes a fair appeals process.

SB 120 passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday after passing out of the Senate last month.

Senate Bill 153, sponsored by Sen. David P. Givens, will establish funds for postsecondary schools based on student success, course completion, and other performance-based incentives. GLI supports education bills that incentivize our state’s schools to perform well.

SB 153 passed the House on Tuesday and awaits Gov. Bevin’s signature.

House Bill 50, sponsored by Rep. Kenny Imes, outlines the process for compiling administrative regulations and sets an expiration date for past and future regulations. HB 50 will ease compliance for businesses while making sure that Kentucky’s regulatory environment is not overly burdensome.

HB 50 passed Senate last week and awaits Gov. Bevin’s signature.

House Bill 72, sponsored by Rep. Jerry Miller, will address the endless appeals process that opponents of development projects have used to kill economic investments in our community by requiring the post of an appeal bond by the appellant. HB 72 will deter frivolous appeals, allow legitimate cases to proceed, and make the process fair.

HB 72 was amended and passed out of the Senate on Wednesday, the House failed to concur with HB 72 as amended by the Senate. The bill awaits Senate action.

House Bill 410, sponsored by Rep. Jim DuPlessis, offers Kentuckians the option to choose enhanced identification that will comply with federal standards or continue to use the current state-issued identification card. Kentucky will now be compliant with enhanced federal standards set by the Department of Homeland Security and Kentucky identification cards will be accepted for entry into federal facilities such as Fort Knox, Fort Campbell, other government facilities and domestic flights.

HB 410 passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday and was delivered to Gov. Bevin for his signature.

House Bill 520, sponsored by Rep. Bam Carney, allows the establishment of charter schools in the Commonwealth. This legislation outlines the qualifications needed to apply and authorize a charter school, including a path for existing schools to become charter schools. Charter schools provide another educational option for families of all economic backgrounds who want the best for their children. House Bill 471, sponsored by Rep. Steven Rudy and co-sponsored by Rep. Bam Carney, includes language to fund HB 520.

HB 520 and HB 471 passed the Senate on Wednesday, and passed the House as amended Wednesday night and awaits Gov. Bevin’s signature.

Indiana House Bill 1286 passed through the Indiana Senate Committee on Local Government with unanimous support earlier this week. Within HB1286, if a regional development authority (RDA) is established after June 30, 2017, the establishing ordinances must specify if the authority has the power of eminent domain, does not have the power of eminent domain, or has the authority per the approval of the municipality’s legislative body. GLI will continue to work with One Southern Indiana in its efforts to form a RDA in Southern Indiana.

HB1286 passed the Indiana House 96-0 last month and awaits a full Senate vote. 

 

For the latest updates, follow our advocacy staff on Twitter: @gliadvocacy #kyga17

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