Commonwealth of Kentucky
Office of Senator Stan Humphries
For Immediate Release
January 24, 2020
Contact: Morgan P’Pool
SENATOR STAN HUMPHRIES’ LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
Following a long weekend honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Kentucky General Assembly returned to Frankfort. The atmosphere in the Capitol was one of anticipation as hundreds of citizens rallied for causes in the Rotunda and met with their legislators to discuss issues facing the Commonwealth.
This week included Children’s Advocacy Day at the Capitol, an event promoting children’s safety, health, education, and economic well-being. In light of this annual gathering, I would like to emphasize the importance of a complete count of our children and students in the upcoming 2020 Census. The Census count helps determine how much money communities receive for critical resources that our children and families will depend on for the next 10 years, including food assistance, housing support, child care, and public education. Knowing how many children there are and where they live is essential to getting them proper access to those critical programs and services here in Kentucky.
It is also imperative that we take necessary action to ensure the safety and security of our students. Two years ago, the Commonwealth grieved the loss of innocent lives due to a senseless act of violence at Marshall County High School. This tragedy prompted last year’s Senate Bill (SB 1), the School Safety and Resiliency Act, a multi-faceted approach to better secure Kentucky schools through increased physical safety measures, a supportive learning environment, and preventative behavioral health services. SB 1 passed with bipartisan support and was signed into law in 2019. On the anniversary of the tragic Marshall County High School events, the Senate Education Committee passed SB 8, a measure that would amend the current statute to expand school personnel, including the designation of a school safety coordinator for each district and by requiring one school-based mental health counselor per 250 students. SB 8 would also require school resource officers to carry firearms.
Also passing favorably through committee this week was SB 9. This Senate priority measure is a testament to our unwavering commitment to protect and defend the right to life here in the Commonwealth. Also known as the “Born Alive Infant Protection Act,” SB 9 requires a physician to take all medically appropriate and reasonable steps to preserve the life and health of a born-alive infant.
While it was only a four-day work week for the Kentucky General Assembly, the Senate passed a number of bills out of the chamber that will now go on to the House for consideration:
SB 2 – A legislative priority that would require a voter to present photo identification at the polls. Under the amended bill, an expired photo I.D. would be accepted. SB 2 is supported by Secretary of State Michael Adams and promotes confidence in the integrity of Kentucky elections.
SB 5 – An act requiring Special Purpose Governmental Entities (SPGEs) to seek approval from their establishing body to levy an ad valorem tax rate that would generate more revenue than the compensating tax rate, or a first-time ad valorem tax.
SB 20 – Prohibits the certification of assisted-living communities if they are owned, managed, or operated by anyone who has been convicted of felony offenses relating to adult abuse, child abuse, drugs, homicide, kidnapping, sex offenses, robbery, arson, pornography, and other offenses.
SB 56 – Ensures Kentucky complies with the federal minimum legal age for the sale, purchase, and use of tobacco products. It also eliminates possession penalties for youth up to age 21.
SB 66 – Amends the current statute to provide that someone who has been criminally charged in the death of another cannot make funeral, burial, or other ceremonial arrangement decisions for the decedent.
SB 72 – A sensitive but vital piece of proposed legislation. Kentucky is among 15 states where female genital mutilation (FGM) is still legal. FGM is any procedure involving the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or another injury to the female organs for nonmedical purposes.
During even-numbered years, the Kentucky General Assembly is tasked with preparing a balanced two-year budget for the Commonwealth. The budget address by the Governor is one of the first steps in crafting this document that will guide the Commonwealth’s financial decisions for the next two years. The Governor will be delivering his budget address on January 28 at 7 p.m.
If you have any questions or comments about these issues or any other public policy issue, please call me toll-free at 1-800-372-7181 or email me at Stan.Humphries@LRC.ky.gov. You can also review the Legislature’s work online at www.legisature.ky.gov.
Note: Senator Stan Humphries (R-Cadiz) represents the 1st District including Calloway, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Lyon, and Trigg Counties. Senator Humphries serves as vice chairman of the Appropriations and Revenue Committee and co-chairman of the Capital Planning Advisory Board and the Public Assistance Reform Task Force. He also serves as a member of the Agriculture Committee; the Veterans, Military Affairs and Public Protection Committee; and the State and Local Government Committee, and the 2020-2022 Budget Preparation & Submission Statutory Committee. Additionally, he serves as an ex-officio member of the Senate Budget Review Subcommittee on Economic Development and Tourism, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection; Education; General Government, Finance, and Public Protection; Human Resources; Justice and Judiciary; and Transportation. For a high-resolution .jpeg of Senator Humphries, please log onto https://legislature.ky.gov/Legislators%20Full%20Res%20Images/senate101.jpg