Gov. Steve Beshear was meeting Monday afternoon with House Speaker Greg Stumbo and Senate President Robert Stivers to try to work on a plan to resolve legislative redistricting.
The governor has said he is confident that the issue will be resolved in a special session sometime this year.
Each decade, lawmakers are required to draw new legislative district boundaries to account for population changes recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau. Kentucky had major population shifts between 2000 and 2010, requiring changes in boundary lines to comply with the federal and state "one person, one vote" mandate.
Two federal lawsuits have been filed in recent weeks to speed up the process in Kentucky. One asks that a three-judge panel redraw boundaries.
State Rep. Derrick Graham has been named the new chairman of the state House Education committee, Democratic leaders announced today.
Graham is a Frankfort native who recently retired as a social studies teacher at Frankfort High School. He is a well-known education advocate and previously chaired a budget subcommittee on education.
“I want to congratulate Derrick, my friend and colleague, on his appointment as the House Education Committee’s newest chairman,” House Speaker Greg Stumbo said in a statement. “He has dedicated his life to education and has a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities Kentucky faces academically."
Five House members of the Democratic majority have applied for the open chairmanship, the news release said.
House Speaker Greg Stumbo announced Monday that hemp legislation won't be going any further this legislative session.
The Courier-Journal reports the bill has been assigned to the Rules Committee. Stumbo told the newspaper "the calendar won't allow us to consider any bills that are in the Rules Committee."
Monday is the 26th day of the 30 day session. Monday and Tuesday are devoted to bills that have cleared both chambers, while the final two days of the session are reserved for overriding any gubernatorial vetoes.
Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo says he doesn't expect a tax reform package to be brought up for a vote in the current legislative session.
Stumbo told reporters Tuesday that such a package doesn't have the 60 votes necessary to pass in the House.
A special commission appointed by the governor proposed reforms that could generate about $690 million a year in additional revenue.
Stumbo said one of the proposals made by the commission could surface in days ahead as a method of shoring up Kentucky's weakening pension system for government retirees. That proposal calls for raising the cigarette tax from 60 cents to $1 a pack, which could generate $100 million for the pension system.
A leading Kentucky lawmaker says raising the cigarette tax to $1 a pack would generate about $100 million a year that could be used to shore up the pension system for government retirees.
House Speaker Greg Stumbo told reporters that that's one of several options House lawmakers are considering to bolster the pension system, which has a $33 billion unfunded liability.
The Republican-controlled Senate passed a bill last week that requires the state to make its full contribution to the pension system but doesn't identify a funding source to do that. Stumbo said the Democratic-led House wants a designated funding source.
The Senate bill also would create a 401(k)-like hybrid retirement plan that some House lawmakers want to remove from the legislation.