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Columns

  • House move averts Medicaid shortfall

    During the legislative session that ended earlier this month, Kentuckians saw a textbook example of what positive things can happen when both parties in the General Assembly come together and work toward the Commonwealth’s greater good.

    The end result was a landmark law that stands as the biggest change to our criminal code since it was overhauled in the mid-1970s. It showed just how effective the legislative process could be when everyone has a seat at the table and a desire to do something truly meaningful.

  • Medicaid funding must be resolved

    Last fall, when the General Assembly finalized the calendar for the 2011 Regular Session, this past week was scheduled to be one of the quietest of the year. It was set aside as part of a 10-day period known as the veto recess, which gives the governor time to consider legislation sent to him and then gives legislators a chance to use the session’s final day to consider vetoes, if any occur.

  • Corrections bill passes; state Medicaid fix fails as session wraps up

    The 2011 General Assembly Session wrapped up March 9 with both a success story and a disappointment. 

    The Senate passed House Bill 463, a landmark bill that was the result of a long, thoughtful, and bipartisan study of the spiraling costs of corrections. This is the first serious revision to our penal code in more than 30 years.

    The nationally recognized Pew Center brought both local and state authorities together to recommend several provisions to improve public safety while lowering correctional costs and the state crime rate. 

  • It’s time to be ready for tornadoes

    There is no such thing as guaranteed safety when a tornado strikes. But it helps to have a family tornado plan in place, based on the kind of dwelling you live in and the safety tips that follow below.
    Know where you can take shelter in a matter of seconds and practice a family tornado drill at least once a year. Have a pre-determined place to meet after a disaster.

  • Special legislative session to tackle shortfall in Medicaid

    When the General Assembly began the 2011 Regular Session in January, there was only one thing that had to be done: Plug a sizeable deficit in Medicaid.
    Work on doing just that began in November, when Gov. Steve Beshear offered a plan that would keep the solution within that healthcare program.
    In essence, it calls for using money set aside for next year to cover the short-term problem, then implementing a wide array of cost-saving managed-care programs across the state similar to those that have long been used for Medicaid recipients in the Louisville area.

  • Asparagus is tasty – steamed, sautéed or raw

    My daughter-in-law called the other day to tell me about her great grocery savings: She bought $120 worth of groceries for under $54.
    She is now known in our family as the “coupon queen,” and rightfully so.
    The other reason for her call was to tell me how she had prepared asparagus for her family, including her parents. She was so proud because her father had paid her the best compliment.

  • Lawmakers vote to protect young, old

    Over the last week or so in the Capitol, there has been a renewed push to help our youngest citizens and those who are young at heart.
    On Monday, for example, Gov. Beshear presented the final report from a task force he formed more than a year ago to give a top-down look at our elementary and secondary schools and how they could be improved.

  • Public workers deserve representation

  • Education, job important in ‘11 legislative session

    Last week, the General Assembly returned to the Capitol to kick off the main portion of the 2011 Regular Session.

    This follows the guidelines established in the state’s Constitution for odd-year meetings, which call for a brief recess after legislators meet for four days in early January to elect House and Senate leaders and establish committee membership for the next two years.

    When we returned last Tuesday, Gov. Steve Beshear set the stage for the work ahead when he offered the annual State of the Commonwealth address.

  • Be considerate with that cell phone

    I would like to use this space for a little rant this week.

    Let me begin by saying I love my cell phone. It’s great for when you are shopping with a friend and need to get back together after going your own ways. I have called the library for a phone number when I am on my way to an appointment and have left the address at home or I’m going to be late and need to call and let someone know. I have even taken a picture of a beautiful sunset with my phone when I encounter one and don’t have my camera.