I arrived on Capitol grounds early (10:30 am) to give myself time to learn my way around before the Kentuckians for the Commonwealth (KFTC) gathering. It turned out to be a good idea because I had to go to the business office to get my ID badge. Lesson one: don't try to get your badge on the first day of the Legislative session. They moved the office from the Capitol basement to the Annex building. Fortunately, I got to the correct office before a lot of other people. I had to wait only about 20 minutes. The line was out the door and down the hall when I left.
The KFTC gathering was so crowded that people lined the walls and stood in the hallway. There were folks from all over KY with many different issues of interest. We heard from Representative Kelly Flood and Senators Gerald Neal and Morgan McGarvey. Rep. Flood encouraged optimism, and spoke in support of sustainable and earth-friendly energy. The Senators took questions on various topics including voter rights, tax reform, and budget. Senator Neal also expressed his concern about the proposed methane treatment facility in West Louisville.
After lunch, KFTC held a rally in the Rotunda. Again, the room was overflowing and the noise level was deafening. There were speakers from several organizations covering topics like ecology, workers' rights, mininum wage, and tax reform.
I ran into Nancy Jo Kemper at the rally. While talking in the hallway, she introduced me to several key people including Senators and lobbyist. Chris Sanders, who served as Interim Coordinator of the KBF, was also there. They both send their regards to their KCC friends.
The day ended with a KY Smart on Crime Coalition meeting with Rep. Brent Yonts. We put finishing touches on a proposal that he will be filing. The proposal is an act relating to crimes and punishments. More details to come later.
It was a good first day, and I am grateful for the opportunity to represent the Council as your legislative advocate. Come back to this blog for more updates throughout the legislative session.