This was a short work week for the Kentucky General Assembly. The legislature observed President's Day on Monday and did not meet.
When they convened Tuesday afternoon the Budget Review Committee on Transportation heard testimony from Acting Secretary Mike Hancock about the Transportation Cabinet Budget and the state's six year road plan. Secretary Hancock stated he and his staff will have to prioritize the projects that may be undertaken for the next two years and said it will be more of a challenge to live with fewer dollars coming to his cabinet. The Senate Appropriations and Revenue Committee (A&R) also meet with John Tilley, secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet and made inquiries about his budget needs and priorities. Later that afternoon, the House passed HB225, a bill benefiting professional licensure for military service members and veterans sponsored by Rep. Jody Richards (D-Bowling Green), and Rep. Larry Clark's HB265, a bill which would allow the universities to bond capital projects on their campuses, both bills which AGC supports.
Wednesday morning found one of the House A&R subcommittees hearing testimony from Derrick Ramsey, Secretary of the Labor Cabinet, and David Dickerson, Secretary of the Public Protection Cabinet, regarding the governor's proposed budget on their respective areas.That afternoon the Senate acted on Sen. Paul Hornback's (R-Shelbyville) SB76, which creates a new definition in statute, "nondivisible load," that will be beneficial to agricultural and construction transportation interests. The bill passed the Senate 38-0 and now goes to the House.
There was no committee or legislative activity on Thursday regarding bills of interest to AGC. Friday found the Senate acting on SB151, a worker's compensation bill giving credit to employers for having light-duty work for injured employees. Sen. Steve West (R-Paris) is the sponsor of this legislation which passed with a vote of 24-9. The House acted on no legislation we were supporting.
We are urging the Senate to act quickly on HB309, our Public-Private Partnership (P3) legislation. This bill has been assigned to the Senate Economic Development, Tourism and Labor Committee. Please call your Senator at (800) 372-7181 and ask him/her to support HB309. This legislation will move Kentucky forward on important investments that would create jobs and help complete necessary infrastructure projects while creating a transparent process to protect taxpayer dollars. AGC has been a supporter and a leading proponent of P3's for several years and fully endorses HB309.
We are now just past the half-way point of this year's legislative session, with only 29 legislative days remaining. Through today, the Senate has 203 bills in their chamber while the House has authored 452 bills. Click on the link below to read the bills AGC is supporting:
SB3 – Right to Work
SB9 – Elimination of Prevailing Wage on Public School Projects
SB76 – Vehicle Loads
SB93 – Licensing Fees
SB94 – Ability to Opt Out of Prevailing Wage on Local Government Projects
SB105 – Elevator Mechanic Licensure
SB132 – Public Private Partnerships
SB135 – Offender Reentry
SB151 – Worker's Compensation Benefits
SCR75 – Kentucky Workforce Oversight Task Force
HB30 – Licensing Fees
HB57 – Tax Increment Financing
HB200 – Worker's Compensation Subrogation
HB216 – Kentucky Economic Development Partnership
HB225 – Occupational Licensure
HB243 – Administrative Regulations
HB265 – Postsecondary Education Capital Projects
HB292 – Limited Liability Entity Tax (LLET)
HB309 – Public Private Partnerships
HB311 – Worker's Compensation Benefits
HB324 – Taxation
HB365 – Underground Facility Protection
HB379 – Apprenticeships
HB424 – Historic Properties Tax Credits
HCR97 – Kentucky Workforce Development Task Force
We would encourage you to contact your representative and senator about the bills listed above or about any other legislation you may have an interest in. They do want to hear from you! Just call the Legislative Message Line at (800) 372-7181 and ask for your representative or senator by name. Your input helps them make a better informed vote.
We take our responsibility of representing you and the commercial construction industry very seriously. In addition to watching for legislation impacting our industry, we also advocate for those bills affecting small business in general. If you have any questions about AGC's position on any legislation, please contact Ron Wolf, Director of External Relations, at email@example.com.