Legislative Update: House passes transparency measures, modernization bills move through Senate

Pension Transparency

A bill to bring more transparency and oversight to the state’s retirement systems now heads for its final legislative hurdle of concurrence in the Senate after passing out of the House unanimously on Thursday.

Senate Bill 2, sponsored by Public Pension Oversight Board co-chair Sen. Joe Bowen, would bring more transparency and oversight to the state’s retirement systems by making changes to board structures including gubernatorial appointments and requiring the systems to follow KRS Chapter 45A, the model procurement code, with a new compromise made with the systems that exempts their investment contracts. Read more about the bill here.

Transparency on Private Attorney Contracts with State

A bill to bring more accountability and transparency to taxpayer dollars by capping the amount of contingency fees collected by private attorneys for government work passed through the House Friday morning with a 62-32 vote.

House Bill 281, sponsored by Rep. Jason Nemes, seeks to shine a light on contingency fee contracts entered into by the Kentucky Attorney General and ensures the Commonwealth remains in control of litigation when hiring contingency fee counsel. The bill now heads to the Senate, where a similar bill has been passed in years past.  Get more details of the legislation here.

Reentry Reform Legislation

Bipartisan legislation seeking to cut down on recidivism and allow people a better transition back into the community after life in prison passed out of the Senate on Friday with a 35-1 vote.

Senate Bill 120, filed and introduced by Sen. Whitney Westerfield at a press conference earlier this month, would help address Kentucky’s workforce shortage by providing work opportunities for individuals who are held back by a past criminal record. The bill passed through Senate committee on Thursday.

Senate Bill 120 now heads to the House for a hearing in the Judiciary committee.

Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Bill Lear wrote an op-ed about the issue this week. Read it here.

Telecommunications Modernization

A bill aiming to cut the regulations faced by telecommunications providers that hinder much needed investment passed the Senate Friday with only one no vote.

Senate Bill 10, sponsored by Sen. Paul Hornback, follows up on the telecommunications reforms made in 2015 and seeks to modernize Kentucky’s out of date telecommunications laws which stifle growth and economic development. Read an op-ed from Kentucky Chamber President Dave Adkisson on the issue here.

Categories: Government Modernization, Kentucky Competitiveness, Labor, Workforce Development

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