Kenny Colston, KPR-Frankfort

KPR Statehouse Bureau Chief

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12:31pm

Mon February 18, 2013
All Politics are Local

Kentucky House Moves Forward With Redistricting

Greg Stumbo
Credit Kentucky Legislative Commission

Kentucky House leaders are moving ahead with addressing redistricting this session—despite hesitation from the Senate and pleas from the governor. The regional caucuses are still working on their areas when it comes to redistricting, House Speaker Greg Stumbo said.

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12:29pm

Mon February 18, 2013
All Politics are Local

Senate Considering Changes to Special Taxing District Reform Bill

Robert Stivers
Credit Legislative Research Commission

A bill aimed at reforming the way special districts are treated in Kentucky is likely to undergo some changes in hands of the state Senate. House Bill 1 is a partnership between Auditor Adam Edelen and House Speaker Greg Stumbo, based off recommendations Edelen made during his investigation of special taxing districts across Kentucky.

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12:13pm

Fri February 15, 2013
All Politics are Local

House Leaders Consider Instant Racing Legalization to Help Pay for Pensions

Greg Stumbo
Credit Kentucky Legislative Commission

Kentucky House leaders are considering legalizing Instant Racing across Kentucky to help plug the funding gap in the state's pensions. Instant Racing is a slots-like game currently played at two Kentucky tracks, Ellis Park and Kentucky Downs. The legality of the game is also currently being litigated at the Kentucky Supreme Court.

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3:28pm

Thu February 14, 2013
All Politics are Local

Kentucky Senate Passes Hemp Bill

Credit Adrian Cable/Creative Commons

The state Senate has passed a bill aimed at creating a hemp industry in Kentucky, though the bill's future appears to lack the support of key government leaders. The Senate's 31-6 approval of a bill establishing oversight for Kentucky  industrial hemp farmer if hemp were made legal federally comes with the release of a poll stating that most Kentuckians believe legalized hemp would create jobs.

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2:02pm

Thu February 14, 2013
All Politics are Local

Former Wildcat Derek Anderson Joins Rally for Statewide Smoking Ban

Credit Challiyil Eswaramangalath Vipin/Wikimedia Commons

FRANKFORT — Supporters of a statewide smoking ban brought high-profile help from the world of sports while rallying Thursday in the Capitol Rotunda  for their cause. Urging Kentucky lawmakers to pass a statewide smoking ban, Gov. Steve Beshear and former University of Kentucky basketball player Derek Anderson spoke in favor of House Bill 190 at the rally. Currently more than 20 Kentucky communities have smoke-free laws, spanning across the state. And recent polls said that most Kentuckians support a ban.

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12:31pm

Thu February 14, 2013
All Politics are Local

Senate Passes Bill Allowing Panel Reviews in Nursing Home Abuses Cases

Julie Denton
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

The state Senate on Wednesday approved that sets up a panel to review abuse cases from nursing homes. Three doctors would be put on the panel to review abuse cases; the bill would not prevent patients from filing lawsuits, but the findings from the panel could be admissible in court. The Senate approved Senate Bill 9 on a party-line vote—Republican for, Democrats against.

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5:39pm

Wed February 13, 2013
All Politics are Local

Senate Committee Backs Bill Requiring Medicaid Providers to Publish Prescription Prices

Credit Melanie Tata/Creative Commons

A bill requiring Kentucky Medicaid managed care operators publish a list of prescriptions and reimbursement prices on Wednesday passed a state Senate committee, following prodding from  independent pharmacists asking for access to pricing standards before they fill prescriptions.

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5:39pm

Wed February 13, 2013
All Politics are Local

Senate Committee Backs Bill Requiring Medicaid Providers to Publish Prescription Prices

Credit Melanie Tata/Creative Commons

A bill requiring Kentucky Medicaid managed care operators publish a list of prescriptions and reimbursement prices on Wednesday passed a state Senate committee, following prodding from  independent pharmacists asking for access to pricing standards before they fill prescriptions.

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1:50pm

Tue February 12, 2013
All Politics are Local

Health Sharing Bill Moves to Full State Senate

Credit WFPL File Photo

A bill that would allow exemptions for Christian health sharing organizations to operate in Kentucky sailed over it first hurdle in a Senate committee. Senate Bill 3 is known as the Medishare bill, named for the health sharing organization Christian Care Medishare, which was recently kicked out of Kentucky by the Department of Insurance. Medishare operates by pooling money to help pay for members medical bills.

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12:23pm

Tue February 12, 2013
All Politics are Local

Kentucky Metro Leaders to Draft Legislation for Local Option Sales Tax

Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit Louisville Metro Government

FRANKFORT — Though the effort for a local option sales tax lacks support from principals in the General Assembly, Mayor Greg Fischer and other leaders from Kentucky's largest communities still went to Frankfort on Tuesday to push for a constitutional amendment. Calling themselves the Metropolitan Alliance for Growth, the group is creating its own draft of legislation for a local option sales tax—but they call it LIFT, for Local Investments for Transformation.

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5:52pm

Mon February 11, 2013
All Politics are Local

Rand Paul Says Court Oversight in Drone Attacks Needed

Credit Public Domain

Courts should decide whether the U.S. should use drone attacks on American citizens who are abroad and accused of committing crimes against the nation, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul said. Paul told Kentucky Public Radio on Monday that he would prefer a judge or jury make those decisions, as they do with crimes committed inside the U.S.

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5:48pm

Mon February 11, 2013
All Politics are Local

Hemp Bill Sails Through Kentucky Senate Agriculture Committee

James Comer
Credit WFPL File Photo

FRANKFORT — After testimony from a bevy of high-level supporters, the state Senate agriculture committee unanimously approved Monday a bill that would establish oversight for Kentucky  industrial hemp farmer if hemp were made legal federally. Agriculture Commission James Comer—the leading proponent of industrial hemp in Kentucky—recruited U.S. Reps. Thomas Massie and John Yarmuth to speak in favor of the bill at the committee, as well as U.S. Sen.  Rand Paul. But the bill has opposition from many law enforcement agencies, including the Kentucky State Police and Operation UNITE, a federally-funded program.

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5:43pm

Mon February 11, 2013
All Politics are Local

Paul's Tea Party State of the Union Rebuttal Will Focus on Federal Debt

Rand Paul
Credit Credit U.S. Senate

U.S. Sen.Rand Paul will be one of two GOP senators providing a rebuttal to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday. Paul is providing the tea party response to the annual address, while U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida will provide the Republican Party's official response.

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6:25am

Mon February 11, 2013
State Capitol

Legislative Leaders Don't Support Local Sales Tax

Kentucky's top two legislative leaders say the local option sales tax isn't likely to come up this year.  The local option would allow cities and counties to put temporary sales tax increases to a public vote. It would typically be used to pay for infrastructure projects.  Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Lexington Mayor Jim Gray are the major forces behind the option, and a bill amending the state Constitution to allow it has been filed in the Senate.

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11:28am

Fri February 8, 2013
All Politics are Local

Special Taxing Districts Reform Sails Through Kentucky State House

Credit WFPL File Photo

A bill reforming how the state's special districts are categorized and making them more transparent easily passed the state House this morning, 96-1. State Rep. Lynn Belcher, a Republican from Crittenden County, was the lone "no" vote.  Many local library boards, sewer districts and fire districts are considered special taxing districts separate from other types of government.

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4:26pm

Thu February 7, 2013
All Politics are Local

Greg Stumbo Files Bill Aimed at Speeding Up Medicaid's Late Payment Process

Greg Stumbo
Credit Kentucky Legislative Commission

House Speaker Greg Stumbo has filed a bill to move complaints about late payments in Kentucky's Medicaid system from the Cabinet for Health and Family Services to the Department of Insurance. Health care providers—such as hospitals and doctor's offices— have complained about severely late payments since the managed care system started. Currently, the cabinet deals those issues that arise when one of the state's Medicaid operating companies delays payment to a health provider.

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