In the Kentucky Legislature, there was budget talk Friday in both houses, but it had little to do with dollars and cents. It began in the Senate when Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer asked members in the House to move on a two year budget and get it to his chamber.
Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo has given the Kentucky State Police memos regarding documents shredded by the former head of the Legislative Research Commission.
Stumbo provided the documents to legislative security specialist Rick Devers along with a request for state police to take whatever action is deemed appropriate. House Republican Floor Leader Jeff Hoover asked for an investigation after former LRC Director Bobby Sherman returned to his office with other staffers on Sunday, two days after he resigned, and shredded documents.
One of the staffers, Deputy Director Robert Jenkins, said the documents that were destroyed were either duplicates or were of a personal nature, including junk mail, mortgage papers and salary comparisons for LRC.
House Republican leaders are offering a legislative redistricting plan that would force eight incumbents to run against each other next year.
The map unveiled today by House GOP Leader Jeff Hoover affects four Republicans and four Democratic lawmakers. Hoover says the GOP plan is very different from a plan put forth earlier this year by Democrats that had nine Republicans running against each other but no Democrats.
The highest-ranking Republican in the Kentucky state House is calling on Governor Steve Beshear to reject an expansion of Medicaid set forth in the Affordable Care Act. The Supreme Court ruling on the healthcare law allows states to opt out of the expansion of the program. House Minority Floor Leader Jeff Hoover wants Beshear to follow other states that have opted out.
A Franklin Circuit Court judge has thrown out new legislative district maps, saying they violate the basic principles of the Kentucky Constitution.
Judge Phillip Shepherd’s ruling is based on the so-called “five percent rule.” It says new districts must be within five percent of their ideal size. Shepherd added that the maps of both the House and Senate districts divided too many counties.