Greg Stumbo

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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. But Senate President Robert Stivers says his chamber doesn't want to put more tax burdens on individuals.

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State Sen. Julie Denton has filed two bills that would put control of implementation of the Affordable Care Act into lawmakers’ hands.

Kentucky lawmakers are at odds on whether to postpone redistricting for a year to avoid gumming up an upcoming legislative session that's already chock-full of hefty issues. Incoming Republican Senate President Robert Stivers says there’s no rushed to redraw legislative boundaries because the next round of elections isn't until 2014. Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo wants the process over as quickly as possible after the session convenes Jan. 8.

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As another legislative session looms, House Speaker Greg Stumbo says he doesn’t expect many recently-discussed reforms to become law. With pension and tax reforms on the table, and gambling and other perennial issues the topic of much conversation, lawmakers' plates will be full.

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After years of defeat, Kentucky lawmakers believe an expanded gambling bill could become law next year. At the Kentucky Chamber’s annual policy day, House Speaker Greg Stumbo and new Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer discussed the prospects of such a bill in the upcoming session. Both leaders suggested the opposing chamber take up the bill first when they get to Frankfort next month. 

Thayer was the sponsor of a Senate gambling bill in this year's session. The measure ultimately failed. But Thayer says the Senate can pass a new bill if the governor pushes hard enough.

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Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo is no longer demanding that any legislation calling for a constitutional amendment to legalize gambling start in the Senate. Stumbo told reporters Thursday, "that line in the sand doesn't have to be drawn any longer." Stumbo and Governor Steve Beshear are hopeful that the departure of Senate President David Williams will improve the chances of getting a bill passed.

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The No. 1 priority for the Kentucky House in 2013 is set: Tackling recommendations from a recent report that found that special tax districts have big budgets and little oversight.

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To date, the chatter over who'll challenge U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell in 2014 has centered around actress/activist Ashley Judd.

And, if not Judd, then Alison Lundergan Grimes, the Kentucky secretary of state.

A top Kentucky Democrat is saying that McConnell's Democratic challenger will be neither of the women.

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While not many Democrats showed up to speak at this year’s Fancy Farm picnic, one of the few who did unleashed a flurry of verbal assaults on the GOP. 

House Speaker Greg Stumbo spoke on behalf of Governor Steve Beshear. In his remarks, Stumbo blamed U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell for many of the nation’s problems. And he aimed his other taunts at Republicans at every level, from the statehouse to the top of the ticket, criticizing Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's business and tax returns.

U. S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell called out Kentucky democrats for missing the Fancy Farm Picnic this year.

 

McConnell, Kentucky's senior U. S. senator, came to the stage amid a flurry of cheers and jeers from the audience. He then led a roll call of democratic leaders, saying, “Gov. Beshear, are you here? … Lt. Gov. Abramson … Attorney General Conway … State Auditor Edelen …”

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