Government

Stumbo on Compromise
10:31 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Stumbo Says Budget Compromise Should Be Easy

 House Speaker Greg Stumbo says his chamber's priorities for the next two-year budget are not that different from the Senate's.

Both chambers have passed their own budget bills for each branch of state government. The two sides must now work out a compromise. Stumbo says he doesn't have many concerns with the Senate's changes and he expects a conference committee to hatch a compromise quickly.

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Tennessee Government
8:40 am
Fri March 23, 2012

New Tennessee Arts Commissioner Named

Anne Pope has been named executive director of the Tennessee Arts Commission. Pope is a former commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, and executive director of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission. She also served as federal co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission. Most recently Pope was executive director of the Tennessee STEM Innovation Network, which promotes the teaching of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in public schools. Pope succeeds Rich Boyd, who retired after 28 years in the post.

2012 General Assembly
8:28 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Kentucky Senate Approves Budget Bill

wikipedia.com

After hours of closed-door meetings, the Kentucky Senate approved budgets for the three branches of state government Thursday night.

The House previously approved its own versions of the budgets. The Senate kept the House's legislative plan intact but modified the executive and judicial budgets. The two chambers must now form a conference committee to work out the differences.

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2012 General Assembly
4:20 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Lawmakers Vote Down Abortion Bill

wikipedia.com

A proposal to require doctors to allow women seeking abortions to see ultrasound images has been voted down in the Kentucky legislature. The House Health and Welfare Committee rejected the measure 9-5 today (Thursday). The perennial bill, sponsored by a series of senators over the years, has routinely passed the Republican-controlled Senate only to die in the Democratic-led House.

2012 General Assembly
1:51 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Kentucky Lawmakers To Add Pressure to DOE to Keep USEC Open in Paducah

DOE

Kentucky lawmakers are set to pass a bill with the hope it will help a uranium enrichment plant in Paducah create new operations.

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Government
9:23 am
Thu March 22, 2012

KY Bill would give pretrial home incarceration credit

The Kentucky Senate has passed a bill giving defendants in Kentucky who receive home incarceration prior to trial credit for the time served as part of their sentences.  Wednesday, the Senate voted 32-2 to pass the proposal by Senator Robin Webb.  The only votes against it were from Republicans Damon Thayer and John Schickel.  The original version of the bill would have made the measure apply retroactively to defendants granted pretrial home incarceration on or after July 15, 1996, but that provision was deleted before the Senate voted on the bill.

Government
9:22 am
Thu March 22, 2012

IL House approves end to legislative scholarships

Illinoislawmakers are again pushing to get rid of legislative scholarships.  The House voted yesterday to end the program that allows each lawmaker to hand out tuition waivers to students from their district. The measure now goes to the Senate, which has backed the program in the past.  Each legislator can award four-year waivers to two students or divide them among up to eight students.  The program has received criticism after revelations some legislators awarded waivers to family members and the children of political allies.

Government
9:21 am
Thu March 22, 2012

Quinn: FEMA denies Illinois appeal for assistance

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn says the Federal Emergency Management Agency has denied the state's appeal for assistance after a deadly late February tornado and severe storms in southern Illinois.  Quinn says he is disappointed with the decision and doesn't believe "it reflects the reality and devastation on the ground." Hundreds of homes in five southern Illinois counties were damaged or destroyed by storms that killed seven people in Harrisburg.  Quinn says the state is submitting a request to the U.S. Small Business Administration for low-interest loans.

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Government
9:20 am
Thu March 22, 2012

Bill seeks to repeal Tenn. Estate tax

A proposal to repeal Tennessee's estate tax is advancing in the state House.  The measure passed the House Finance Subcommittee Wednesday. The companion bill is awaiting a vote in the Senate’s finance committee.  Under the proposal, the tax - also called the "death tax" - would be gradually phased out over the next four years.  Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell says the proposal is beneficial because the tax, in her words, "drives people, capital and jobs out of the state."

Government
9:19 am
Thu March 22, 2012

KY Senate passes bill aimed at stopping copper theft

Scrap yards in Kentucky would be barred from paying cash for copper and other recyclable metals under legislation that cleared the state Senate Wednesday.  The measure requires people selling scrap metal be paid by a check sent by mail.  That move could give police names and addresses if the metals are later found to be stolen.  The Senate voted unanimously for the bill, which now returns to the House for final passage.  Bill sponsor Democratic state Representative Tanya Pullin says thieves have taken guardrails, manhole covers, catalytic converters, utility lines, and even rooftop air cond

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