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Opinion

  • What I learned in Frankfort
    On March 21, with a bipartisan 75-16 vote, HB 31 passed the Kentucky House of Representatives and was sent to the Senate. Senate leadership refused to assign this bill to a committee or allow a vote on Sen. Jimmy Higdon’s related SB 14. In an effort to protect landowner’s rights, Sen. Higdon filed floor amendments to three different bills, which is a total of five bills that Senate leadership didn’t allow to advance.

  • By Molly McMasters
    Guest columnist

    For those in our community who do not know who the Marion County Friends of the Library (FOL) are, let me introduce us. We are patrons, grandmothers, grandfathers, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, sons, daughters, citizens from all walks of life who live or have lived in Marion County and LOVE libraries; especially our local library.

  • Wicker is dedicated to Bradfordsville
    I am writing this letter in support of my friend Jackie Wicker who is up for re-election as Magistrate District One. Jackie has 11 years experience as magistrate in this district and he has always been our force in fiscal court regardless of his own personal opinions. His duties include budgeting for our county offices, solid waste, economic development, road maintenance and improvements along with a lot of other departments such as the jail, sheriff and EMS. And, he has never once voted to raise our taxes.

  • If legislative sessions start like a marathon, they end like a 100-yard dash, as the House and Senate make a final push to turn their goals into law. Leading the agenda, of course, is the state’s two-year budget and highway plan. Legislative leaders began meeting Wednesday to hammer out a compromise, and the good news is that there is some broad area of agreement.

  • Maybe I’ve become more sensitive after having my head shaved, but lately there seems to be lots of news about young women being ostracized because of their hair, or lack of it.
    Last week, there were two stories in the national news involving schools that attempted to suspend or turn away young girls basically because of their hair.

  • The deadline for letters to the editor related to the May 20 primary election is 5 p.m, Friday, May 2. Email letters to editor@lebanonenterprise.com or bring/send them to The Lebanon Enterprise located at 119 South Proctor Knott Avenue, Lebanon, Ky, 40033. Limit is 400 words.

  • Friday, I was happy to learn that House Bill 31 passed and now heads to the Senate Chambers.

  • Do we live in a democracy? The dictionary defines a democracy as a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system. The passage of HB 31 by the House was an indication of democracy at work – a case of private property rights versus corporate interests. This bill prohibits the use of eminent domain by developers of hazardous natural gas liquids pipelines.

  • If the state’s budget is the most important legislation that the General Assembly approves every two years, enacting the state’s road plan is a close second.
    As with the budget, the goal is to find the best use for a limited amount of resources. This is an area where Kentucky generally gets high marks, however, based on an annual national study by the Reason Foundation that ranks the quality of each state’s highway system. We came in 14th overall last year, with no state having a better quality of rural interstates.

  • When is the last time you got together with thousands of people to do something?
    We don’t mean when were you in a crowd of thousands of people. Maybe you attended a sporting event, ran in a road race or visited a festival, but you — and the rest of the people — weren’t there to work together.
    Well, more than 3,500 people did get together Sunday at TG Kentucky and they did have the same purpose.
    They planted a forest.

  • This week we had exciting news on the high school sports front as the Bardstown Tigers basketball team got the win over Elizabethtown on Tuesday, earning a trip to the Sweet 16 tournament in Lexington. The Tigers’ first game is Thursday night. This time of year is always exciting and I congratulate Bardstown High on the hard work and success.

  • “When you’re a bald woman, you’ve broken the code. You’re different. You’re a rebel, and you always command the attention of the room. Some of them might be staring for the wrong reasons… But hey, at least they’re looking. And let’s be honest: They wish they were as cool as you. It’s fine. Not all of us can be superheroes.”

  • By Kathi Bearden
    Board President, New Mexico Foundation for Open Government
    Former Publisher, the Hobbs-News

    March 16-22 is Sunshine Week nationwide. Take a moment to celebrate. Sunshine Week focuses on the importance of open government. No open government, no democracy. No transparency, no government accountability.

  • When it comes to the state’s budget, the past six years can be summed up in four words: Do more with less.
    There hasn’t been much choice, given that spending has been cut by $1.6 billion since 2008, and the state workforce is the smallest it has been since the 1970s.  Some agencies have seen spending reduced by more than a third, while classroom funding for elementary and secondary education has been held steady for far too long.

  • The Senate continued work this week, and recognized an historic event. On Wednesday, many lawmakers joined thousands of Kentuckians gathered along Capitol Avenue to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s March on Frankfort. It was a cold and blustery March 5 when Dr. King led 10,000 others in a march up to the front door of our Capitol in support of the Kentucky Civil Rights Act.

  • The week may have been cut short by a day because of another round of winter weather, but the Kentucky House of Representatives didn’t let that stand in the way of approving a broad collection of bills.
    Those ranged from the relatively simple – helping sheriff’s departments fill vacancies – to the morally complex, which in this case would build on the current directives people have regarding what life-saving measures, if any, they want taken.

  • Library Legislative Day was held on March 6. This special day was designated for Friends of Kentucky Libraries and librarians across the state to meet with their representatives and talk about issues facing Public Libraries. Library supporters from Marion County had the opportunity to travel to Frankfort that day and speak to Rep. Terry Mills and Sen. Jimmy Higdon. The day was a huge success but alas it is but one day.

  • The article “Nurse practitioners gain more autonomy” in last week’s edition should have identified Jim Osbourne as the practice manager at Family and Internal Medicine Associates in Lebanon, not as Dr. Jim Osbourn. The article also should have said there are 3,700 nurse practitioners in Kentucky.
     

  • I usually keep my mouth shut at school board meetings.

  • March promises many things here in Kentucky; for us in the Senate it is preparing for the most difficult part of the job, the biennial budget. As we await the House to pass its version, legislation continues in our chamber.
    On the Senate floor, I had the privilege of welcoming students from my district who paged for me during sessions. I also had the pleasure of participating in a Q & A session with students from Mercy Academy along with other members of the caucus. It is great to hear the perspectives of our youth.