Legislature prepares for interim session with new task forces

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The 2023 interim legislative session starts in June and ahead of it, the Legislative Research Commission announced that several task forces have been named to study specific policy issues. 

Part of the focus of the interim period will be specific policy issues to be studied by several special committees or task forces. Each special committee or task force listed below will meet throughout the 2023 Interim.

Each task force will consist of 10 legislative members:

  1. The House speaker appoints four members of the House majority.
  2. The House minority floor leader appoints one member of the House minority.
  3. The Senate president appoints four members of the Senate majority.
  4. The Senate minority floor leader appoints one member of the Senate minority.

LINK nky explored how two of those task forces (certificate of need and local government annexation) will impact Northern Kentucky, but are giving short overviews of all the committees below. 

2023 SPECIAL COMMITTEES AND SENATE MEMBERSHIP

Task Force on Local Government Annexation: Resulting from the passage of Senate Bill 141, sponsored by Senator Amanda Mays Bledsoe (R-Lexington) the task force will study required city annexation methods and will review the beneficial and damaging effects of city annexation on taxation, economic development, provision and sustainability of water, gas, electric, sewer, and other utility services, police protection, fire protection, and emergency services from the perspective of local governments and their residents. The task force will also recommend statutory law changes resulting from deliberations.

Task Force on Local Government Annexation membership is:

  • Sen. Robby Mills (R-Henderson) – co-chair
  • Rep. Jonathan Dixon (R-Corydon) – co-chair
  • Sen. Michael J. Nemes (R-Shepherdsville)
  • Senate President Robert Stivers (R-Manchester)
  • Sen. Phillip Wheeler (R-Pikeville)
  • Sen. David Yates (D-Louisville)
  • Rep. Randy Bridges (R-Paducah)
  • Rep. Beverly Chester-Burton (D-Shively)
  • Rep. Michael Meredith (R-Oakland)
  • Rep. Michael ‘Sarge’ Pollock (R-Campbellsville)

Lottery Trust Fund Task Force: Established from House Concurrent Resolution 34, sponsored by Representative Bobby McCool (R-Van Lear) the task force will review the recent budgetary trends and the use of the lottery trust fund and evaluate the performance of scholarships and grant programs. It will analyze the scholarship and grant needs expected for the commonwealth, compare the current system with other states’ scholarship and grant programs, develop and submit any recommendations and changes to the trust fund, and how to better align the use of the funds with the commonwealth’s needs.

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Lottery Trust Fund Task Force membership is:

  • Sen. Matthew Deneen (R-Elizabethtown) – co-chair
  • Rep. Bobby McCool (R-Van Lear) – co-chair
  • Sen. Gary Boswell (R-Owensboro)
  • Senate Minority Floor Leader Gerald A. Neal (D-Louisville)
  • Sen. Lindsey Tichenor (R-Smithfield)
  • Senate Majority Whip Mike Wilson (R-Bowling Green)
  • Rep. Daniel Grossberg (D-Louisville)
  • Rep. Steve Rawlings (R-Burlington)
  • Rep. Steve Riley (R-Glasgow)
  • Rep. Killian Timoney (R- Lexington)

Multimodal Freight Transportation System Improvement Task Force: Created from House Concurrent Resolution 72, sponsored by Rep. Tom Smith (R-Corbin) the task force will study and make recommendations regarding:

  1. ports, freight, and air terminals to review, correct, secure, and expand economic development opportunities, including ports for bulk river and rail service and transit terminals for trucking and air freight;
  2. the state of the current freight transportation system, identifying gaps, where services are unavailable, existing facilities where backlogs exist, and where expansion is warranted; and
  3. one-time and recurring funding opportunities to fund improvements and maintain the system.

Multimodal Freight Transportation System Improvement Task Force membership is:

  • Sen. Jason Howell (R-Murray) – co-chair
  • House Majority Caucus Chair Suzanne Miles (R-Owensboro) – co-chair
  • Sen. Cassie Chambers Armstrong (D-Louisville)
  • Senate Transportation Chair Jimmy Higdon (R-Lebanon)
  • Sen. Brandon J. Storm (R-London)
  • Sen. Johnnie Turner (R-Harlan)
  • Rep. John Blanton (R-Salyersville)
  • Rep. Chris Freeland (R-Benton)
  • Rep. Tom Smith (R-Corbin)
  • Rep. Ashley Tackett Laferty (D-Martin)

Jail and Corrections Reform Task Force: Formed as a result of House Concurrent Resolution 82, sponsored by Rep. Josh Bray (R-Mount Vernon) the task force will study

  1. existing jail and correctional facilities;
  2. possible realignment and closure of jail and correctional facilities;
  3. adequacy of existing jail and correctional facilities;
  4. management of Kentucky’s incarcerated population;
  5. personnel and other costs associated with jail and correctional facilities;
  6. pretrial and post-conviction incarceration data from the Administrative Office of the Courts, the Department of Corrections, and jails;
  7. pretrial defendants, including a breakdown by the jurisdiction of the financial conditions of release and charged offenses for those defendants; and
  8. the number of supervised individuals incarcerated on new changes versus those incarcerated due to revocation.
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Jail and Corrections Reform Task Force membership is:

  • Sen. John Schickel (R-Union) – co-chair
  • Rep. Josh Bray (R-Mount Vernon) – co-chair
  • Sen. Brandon J. Storm (R-London)
  • Sen. Robin L. Webb (D-Grayson)
  • Sen. Whitney Westerfield (R-Fruit Hill)
  • Sen. Phillip Wheeler (R-Pikeville)
  • Rep. David Hale (R-Wellington)
  • Rep. Keturah Herron (D-Louisville)
  • Rep. Jason Petrie (R-Elkton)
  • Rep. Wade Williams (R-Earlington)

Kentucky Health and Human Services Delivery System Task Force: Resulting from Senate Bill 48, sponsored by Sen. Steve Meredith (R-Leitchfield) the task force is to study the organizational structure, operations, and administration of programs, policies, and procedures within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services. It will

  1. examine the cabinet’s structure, operations, programs, policies, and procedures to determine if or how services may be delivered more effectively and efficiently; and
  2. examine Kentucky’s benefits cliff and continue the work of the prior benefits cliff task force.

The Health and Human Services Delivery System Task Force membership is:

  • Sen. Steve Meredith (R-Leitchfield )- co-chair
  • House Speaker Pro Tem David Meade (R-Stanford) – co-chair
  • Senate Majority Caucus Chair Julie Raque Adams (R-Louisville)
  • Sen. Shelley Funke Frommeye (R-Alexandria)
  • Sen. Denise Harper Angel (D-Louisville)
  • Sen. Amanda Mays Bledsoe (R-Lexington)
  • Rep. Samara Heavrin (R-Leitchfield)
  • Rep. Kimberly Poore Moser (R-Taylor Mill)
  • Rep. Amy Neighbors (R-Edmonton)
  • Rep. Sarah Stalker (D-Louisville)

Certificate of Need Task Force: Established from Senate Concurrent Resolution 165, sponsored by Sen. Gex Williams (R-Verona) and House Concurrent Resolution 85, sponsored by Rep. Marianne Proctor (R-Union) the task force will

  1. review Kentucky’s CON program, including the state health plan and related statutes;
  2. review the need to maintain or modify CON for each covered health service; and
  3. submit any findings and recommendations regarding CON to the Legislative Research Commission for referral to the appropriate committee of jurisdiction.
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Certificate of Need Task Force membership includes:

  • Sen. Donald Douglas (R-Nicholasville) – co-chair
  • Rep. Russell Webber (R-Shepherdsville) – co-chair
  • Sen. Karen Berg (D-Louisville)
  • Senate President Pro Tempore David P. Givens (R-Greensburg)
  • Sen. Steve Meredith (R-Leitchfield)
  • Sen. John Schickel (R-Union)
  • Rep. Lindsey Burke (D-Lexington)
  • Rep. Daniel Elliott (R-Danville)
  • Rep. Marianne Proctor (R-Union)
  • Rep. Susan Witten (R-Louisville)

Task Force on School and Campus Security: The task force to study and review the implementation of 2019 Legislative Sessions Senate Bill 1, sponsored by Sen. Max Wise, R-Campbellsville. It will examine access to mental health services within districts and determine if federal funds are available.

The Task Force on School and Campus Security membership includes:

  • Sen. Max Wise (R-Campbellsville) – co-chair
  • Rep. Scott Lewis (R-Hartford) – co-chair
  • Sen. Matthew Deneen (R-Elizabethtown)
  • Sen. Mike Nemes (R-Shepherdsville)
  • Senate Minority Caucus Chair Reginald Thomas (D-Lexington)
  • Sen. Steve West (R-Paris)
  • Rep. Savannah Maddox (R-Dry Ridge)
  • Rep. Scott Sharp (R-Ashland)
  • Rep. James Tipton (R-Taylorsville)
  • Rep. Lisa Willner (D-Louisville)

Each task force will submit its findings and recommendation to the Legislative Research Commission by December 4.

LEGISLATIVE COVERAGE

Task force meetings will be live-streamed via the LRC YouTube Channel and ket.org/legislature. Archived footage of meetings can be accessed at KET.org/legislature/archives and on the LRC YouTube Channel. Follow the LRC Legislative Calendar for task force meeting information. 

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