2011 General Assembly Regular Session: Bills We're Watching: The Sixth Edition Posted: February 25, 2011
This list profiles the environmental, conservation, consumer and general government bills that the Kentucky Resources Council is supporting, opposing, and tracking during the 2011 session.
This is a “short” session, which began on Tuesday, January 4, recessed on January 7, recommenced on February 1 and will end on March 22.
Feel free to forward this to anyone you feel might be interested, and to utilize, reprint or quote from the bill analyses. We ask only that you attribute KRC as the source when you use our analytical material (so we can take all the blame for anything we’ve gotten wrong!)
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WANT TO READ THE BILLS OR CONTACT LEGISLATORS?
For a copy of any bill, or to check the status of the bill, to track which committee it has been assigned to for hearing, and other legislative information, visit the Legislature's 2011 Session page at http://www.lrc.ky.gov/record/11RS/record.htm
To find your legislators email, go to http://www.lrc.ky.gov/whoswho/email.htm
The phone number to reach a legislator in person is 502-564-8100 (this is not toll-free).
The toll-free meeting schedule information line is 1-800-633-9650.
The toll-free message line is 1-800-372-7181, to leave a message for a legislator or an entire committee. The TTY message line is 1-800-896-0305. En Espanol, el nombre es 1-866-840-6574. The toll-free bill status number is 1-866-840-2835.
Please note that the Council does not have a position on each bill listed. Some bills are tracked for general interest; others simply to assure that they do not become vehicles for mischievous amendments.
Where KRC has taken a position concerning a bill it is indicated with a plus (+) or minus (-). The primary sponsor and current status of the bill are also noted by Committee or chamber.
We’ve changed the format, so that bills we are opposing or supporting appear in the first section, followed by those that we are tracking.
WATCHING THE MULES
While technically, the deadline for new bills has passed for both the House and Senate, both chambers have a number of pending bills that make “technical corrections”, change “must” to “shall” or “shall” to “must”, or propose to replace “he” with gender-neutral language. These are known in the vernacular as “mules” – and are passed out to the other chamber with the intention of stripping the content, changing the title, and sending back to the originating chamber a wholly different bill, typically late in the session and with little public scrutiny.
We’ve counted almost enough mules to make the primary sponsor of the old TV series Wagon Train (20 Mule-Team Borax) and Ward Bond proud.
SB 7(Thayer)(H. Rules)(+)(consent)
Would increase government fiscal transparency by making legislative, judicial and executive branch expenditure records, and certain records of higher educational institutions available on the web.
SB 10 (Thayer and others)(H. Elections and Const Am)(-)(posted)
Would propose a constitutional amendment creating a “21st Century Bill of Rights” including prohibitions against laws and rules restricting the severing of coal, and restricting laws and rules regulating hunting and fishing unless there is a “compelling interest” found by the General Assembly.
The language in SB 10 providing that "no law or rule shall prevent, directly or indirectly, the severing of coal" is broad enough in scope to potentially sweep aside not only the state surface coal mining regulatory program but also mine health and safety regulation, and in so doing result in the loss of state regulatory authority over coal mine health, safety and the environment. The language could also dramatically affect the state budget, since it is facially broad enough to cover the coal severance tax (which might make certain coal reserves uneconomic to mine and in so doing, "indirectly" affect the severing of coal). Additionally, to the extent that application of clean air rules regarding control over sulfur dioxide and other pollutants of public health concern, affect the economics of extraction of certain coal deposits, an argument could be made for elimination of those controls as applied to coal combustion.
A similar concern arises regarding the language prohibiting laws and rules limiting hunting, fishing and harvesting of wildlife. Due to the lack of definition of what constitutes a "compelling interest," that would justify legislative action, depending on how that standard would be defined by the courts, state laws intended to allow management of hunting, fishing, and harvesting of wildlife in order to conserve the population and protect the health of the game species, might be at risk.
SB 30 (Pendleton)(S. Ag)(+)
Would create a licensing process for cultivation of industrial hemp.
SB 34 (Leeper)(H. Tourism, Dev & Energy)(-)
This bill reprises SB 26 from last session, and would eliminate current prohibition on construction of new nuclear plants in the Commonwealth and allow the PSC to approve new nuclear plant construction with only an approved federal plan for storage of nuclear waste. Bill could also allow siting of low-level radwaste facility in Kentucky inasmuch as a nuclear plant would generate a new wastestream of low-level nuclear wastes that would need to be managed.
Administration officials and the sponsor have indicated that lifting the 25-year moratorium is necessary to “begin the conversation” about the role of nuclear energy in Kentucky’s energy future. KRC respectfully disagrees, and believes that allowing a new generation of nuclear power plants to be constructed without a permanent waste disposal strategy in place for wastes that include radionuclides with a half-life of 24,000 years, sends the wrong message to an industry that has seen no new plant construction since 1974, despite significant subsidies from the federal government.
SB 50 (Jensen)(H. Rules)(-)
Similar to HB 213 from the 2010 Session, this bill would allow a private transmission pipeline company to condemn private lands in order to construct a pipeline for transmission of carbon dioxide for private use. KRC believes that irrespective of a legislative declaration that transmission of CO2 by pipeline is a "public use," the reality remains that it is unconstitutional under Sections 13 and 242 of the Kentucky Constitution to grant a non-utility company the power to condemn the lands of another private party where the public will not be able to use the easement that is condemned.
A more detailed analysis of these concerns is available on the KRC website.
SB 70 (Leeper)(H. Rules)(+)(consent)
Would update the soil contamination screening levels used to determine remediation options for contaminated properties to reflect the more current EPA Region 3 Screening Level Table rather than the Region 9 Preliminary Remediation goals.
Comparing the two sets of values, for residential property screening, 313 of the chemicals are within 5% of each other, the Region 3 values are higher for 149 of the contaminants, lower for 73, and 131 new contaminants are added.
SB 115 (Stein)(S. Nat Res & Energy)(+)
The “Streamsaver bill” drafted by KRC for KFTC, would modify surface mining statutes regarding the disposal of mine spoil, to prevent filling streams and require upland management of spoil.
SB 117 (Wilson and others)(S. A&R)(+)
Would create state tax credits for taxpayers who purchase a qualified electric plug-in vehicle after January 1, 2013 and before January 1, 2026.
SB 120 (Smith)(H. Rules)(+)(consent)
Would allow Energy and Environment Cabinet to develop a program for certification of laboratories.
SB 146 (Smith)(S. Nat Res & Energy)(-)
Would revise abandoned mine land statute to “make technical corrections, redraft for clarity and revise to remove unnecessary legalese.” Bill inadvertently garbles the requirement for providing direct mail notice to persons prior to entry on private property for abatement of AML problems, with the posting and advertising required for unknown owners.
This is not an agency bill, and is likely one of the many “technical correction” bills that are introduced as placeholders whose text will be gutted and replaced with completely new language as the bill moves through the process.
SB 151 (Jones, Turner, Blevins)(H. Tourism Dev. & Energy)(-)
Would expand membership of Public Service Commission and convert their positions from appointed to elected offices.
While KRC favors transparency in governance, KRC opposes the bill because there is no evidence to suggest that states with elected public utility commissions have lower rates than those with appointed commissions, nor that elected utility commissioners are more responsible to the needs of utility ratepayers. Kentucky’s rates are lower than those of every state with elected utility commissioners.
KRC is concerned that the experiences of some of the states that elect Commissioners (Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Virginia) reflects a real potential for the regulated utilities to focus campaign contributions in a manner that would affect the policies and decisions of an elected commission. A 2005 University of California Berkeley study, “Does Private Money Buy Public Policy? Campaign Contributions and Regulatory Outcomes In Telecommunications,” by R.J. de Figueiredo of the Institute for Governmental Studies, reviewed the setting of wholesale telephone rates and found a strong correlation between campaign contributions to utility regulators and regulatory outcomes favoring contributors. Experiences in Oklahoma, Georgia, Louisiana, Alabama and Montana, and the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which opened the floodgates for unlimited corporate spending on election campaigns, raise concerns with making the office of Public Service Commissioner an elective office.
SB 168 (Stein)(S. State & Local Govt)(+)
Would prohibit a public servant or candidate from accepting a campaign contribution from an lobbyist, and make other changes to election laws.
SCR 49 (Carroll)(S. State and Local Govt)(+)
Would support increased outdoor participation by youth and encourage public institutions to engage in creating more outdoor learning opportunities for children, and would recognize a list of “Kentucky’s Children’s Outdoor Rights” to include the right to live in safe communities, to enjoy Kentucky’s waters and woodlands, and to attend schools that inspire a culture of learning and which incorporates the concepts of the No Child Left Inside movement.
SJR 99 (Smith)(S. Rules)(-)
Reflecting the frustration of some coalfield legislators over the EPA “Enhanced Review” of water discharge and fill permits in the Appalachian Region, this resolution would declare Kentucky a “sanctuary state” from EPA’s “overreaching” and would declare that water quality standards for water permits for mines are “not” subject to federal regulation and directs the state to issue permits for those operations to which EPA has objected.
KRC testified in opposition to the bill, noting that the immediate result of the initial language of the resolution would likely have been an EPA veto of the state-issued KPDES permits for failure to address the conductivity values identified in the April 1, 2010 Guidance Document, and possibly federal implementation of one or more water quality standards for Kentucky. Elevated levels of sulfates and carbonates associated with exposure of mine spoil to rainfall is impairing attainment of designated uses for streams draining coal producing areas. The elevated conductivity values reflect this, and under existing Kentucky narrative water quality standards, limits on sulfates should have been imposed long before EPA began the enhanced review.
A Senate Committee Substitute removed the language directing the Division of Water to issue the permits to which EPA has issued a preliminary objection.
SR 107 (Clark)(S. Judiciary)(+)
Would urge Congress to propose a constitutional amendment providing that corporations are not “persons” under the laws of the United States. Effect would be, among others, that constraints on corporate campaign spending would not be amenable to invalidation under 1st Amendment, since non-persons have no right of free speech.
SR 116 (Smith)(S. Nat Res & Energy)(-)
Simple resolution would urge Congress to prohibit EPA from adopting regulations on greenhouse gases and to impose a moratorium on any new EPA air regulations except on a finding of “imminent health or environmental emergency” and to urge Congress to require EPA to conduct a cost-benefits analysis on planned regulations.
The U.S. Supreme Court has explicitly rejected the idea that the health-based ambient air quality standards in the Clean Air Act should be tempered by consideration of “costs.” Implementation strategies may consider the most cost effective manner to meet the standards.
HB 1 (Combs and others)(S. State & Local Govt)(-)
Would propose a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to hunt, fish and “harvest” wildlife and would preclude any city or county ordinances that had the effect of limiting such rights, by recognizing only state laws designed to promote wildlife conservation and to preserve the future of hunting and fishing. Enactment of such an amendment is apparently a national NRA priority.
KRC is very concerned with several unintended consequences of the amendment as drafted, and has offered alternative language to address those concerns. A separate posting including that letter is posted on KRC website.
HB 24(Cherry)(S. State & Local Govt)(+)
Would make legislative, judicial and executive branch expenditure records, and certain records of higher educational institutions available on the web.
HB 26(Belcher)(S. State & Local Govt)(+)
This bill contains the text of the House-passed version of House Bill 221, and provides the framework by with two or more wastewater utilities in the counties of Bullitt, Hardin, Jefferson, Meade, Nelson, Oldham and Spencer counties may elect to create a regional wastewater commission in order to better address the wastewater treatment needs of their residents. It is not a mandate, but an opportunity for regional cooperation in order to more cost-effectively treat wastewater generated by residential, commercial, industrial and institutional sources. It offers community utilities that increasingly face scrutiny from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Kentucky Division of Water for the treatment of wastewaters, including stormwater, a way to benefit from economies of scale in managing wastewaters. The bill as prefiled includes several amendments negotiated by KRC during the 2010 Session and accepted by the bill sponsor, to improve public accountability in the formation and operations of such a regional wastewater authority.
HB 205 (McKee and others)(H. Rules)(-)
Bill would modify the membership of the State Board of Agriculture in order to specify that seven voting members shall be selected from the seven commodity-specific organizations representing the greatest cash receipts, and making the head of the Kentucky Farm Bureau a voting member. As KRC's ally, the Community Farm Alliance, points out, the interests of small-scale family farmers and organic farmers will be under-represented, and agribusiness will be given a much greater ability to self-regulate. The granting of regulatory powers to the commodity organizations undercuts the negotiated framework of House Bill 398, which gave them an advisory role to the State Board.
HB 237 (Jenkins)(H. NR And Env)(+)(Needs Revision)
Would amend existing regulations and statutes relating to beneficial reuse and disposal of coal combustion residuals, redefining the wastes as solid rather than special wastes, and would require Emergency Action Plans for high-hazard coal combustion waste impoundments. Would define reuse of unencapsulated coal combustion residuals as solid waste disposal, allow a “permit variance” for such reuse, and preclude the designation of coal combustion wastes as hazardous, and allow cabinet-approved reuse of encapsulated coal combustion residuals.
The intent of the bill is good, but the bill has some drafting problems that need correction and clarification. While Section 2 of the bill expresses a “finding” of the General Assembly that coal combustion residuals should be disposed of only in landfills and impoundments with “protective liners” and “protective controls” and monitoring, there is nothing in the bill that requires the Cabinet to adopt regulations to impose such requirements. While the bill calls for “monitoring for toxic substances”, the parameters for which monitoring is intended, the media sought to be monitored, and the intended effect of the monitoring is unclear.
Section 4 of the bill, which would required emergency action plans for high-hazard coal combustion waste impoundments, is similar to the language of a joint resolution that KRC drafted and has attempted to have enacted for several sessions, and KRC supports the requirement for existing impoundments, but believes that no new high hazard coal combustion waste impoundments should be approved and that utilities should phase out wet management of coal combustion wastes in favor of dry management strategies.
HB 239 (Marzian)(H. Tourism Dev & Energy)(+)
Similar to HB 408 from the 2010 Session. Would impose a renewable portfolio standard on retail electric utilities that eventually achieves 12.5% of sales of electricity, and energy efficiency standard of 10% of sales. Applies to investor-owned, co-op and municipal utilities. Makes load interrupters for residential customers a term of service.
HB 253 (Rudy and Nesler)(H. NR and Env)(-)
Would exempt strip mining of sand and gravel by a person who owns the property and uses the mined sand and gravel for noncommercial purposes on the mined land or on other property owned by the miner.
HB 259 (Yonts)(S. Rules)(+)
Would create process for siting up to 5 demonstration projects for geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide in the Commonwealth, and establish process for pooling pore space. Bill directs Energy and Environment Cabinet to seek primary jurisdiction over the geologic storage of carbon dioxide once the programs are developed at the federal level.
KRC had some concerns regarding the original language of the bill, and the Committee Substitute incorporated language to resolve those concerns. KRC thanks Representative Yonts, Sara Smith, Talina Mathews and Todd Littlefield for their assistance in resolving these concerns.
HB 270 (Richards)(H. Transp)(+)
Would require railroad bridges to be maintained to prevent flaking of paint into waterbodies and establish fines for failure to do so.
HB 340 (Adkins)(S. A&R)(+)
Would expand types of alternative and renewable energy projects eligible for state tax and financial incentives to include “energy storage”, and “energy efficiency or conservation technology”, which would include upgrading energy management, transmission and distribution, reductions in energy demand and significant increases in energy efficiency. Energy storage would include systems capable of storing electrical energy by which 85% of greater efficiency is attained. Creates new category of component manufacturing facilities eligible for incentives, for new or existing facilities manufacturing systems or products used in renewable energy facilities generating electricity, alternative fuel facilities, gasification facilities and energy efficiency or conservation technology. Requires minimum investment of $25 million to be eligible for incentives. Committee amendment clarifies that credits are available for any systems or products made in Kentucky , and exported out of state.
HB 380 (Combs and others)(H. Rules)(-)(consent)
Would attempt to “remove from federal jurisdiction” all goods that are produced or manufactured in the Commonwealth if the goods are “retained or remain in Kentucky” and are “stamped”.
The bill is a more subtle and broad version of HB 421, see below, and seeks to insulate coal mined in Kentucky and consumed here from the Clean Water Act, and is just as violative of the federal case law concerning Congress’ power under the Commerce Clause.
Effect of the bill would be to attempt to interfere with federal agency jurisdiction and oversight of clean water, hazardous waste, food safety, mine and workplace safety, surface mining, endangered species, and other consumer, workplace and environmental protection measures for goods manufactured and consumed in the state. Result of such interference could include less effective regulation of workplace, mine, and public safety, since the continued federal involvement is intended to assure that both the state regulators and the regulated community adhere to the requirements of the delegated programs. Bill would likely provoke efforts by agencies or by the public to de-delegate authority under those federal laws to Kentucky, and imposition of direct federal regulation, inasmuch as continued federal oversight and involvement through permit review, back-up enforcement authority, and back-up inspection authority are a component of these federally-delegated programs. See analysis under HB 421.
HB 385 (Gooch and Steele)(To Senate)
KRC originally opposed the bill because of language problems, but a committee substitute clarified that it is the methodology of bond computation that should be incorporated into regulation, not the amount of a bond computed based on site specific factors, such as spoil volume and haulage distance. One portion of the bill clearly violates separation of powers doctrine.
HB 421 (Gooch)(H. Rules, recommitted to H. A&R)(-)
Purports to declare that the U.S. EPA lacks authority to deny (probably meant to say “veto”) water discharge permits for coal mines where the coal mined does not “travel” in interstate commerce, and to direct the state agency to issue such permits.
KRC testified in opposition to the bill, noting that the direct result of the bill would be a veto of the state-issued permits and direct federal assumption of permitting authority over such vetoed permits. Indirect result may be a partial de-delegation of the state KPDES program.
The U.S. Supreme Court has held consistently and repeatedly that activities that are intrastate in nature are nevertheless subject to regulation under the Commerce Clause where the activity, combined with like activities, affect interstate commerce. The Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act has been upheld against Commerce Clause challenges, and the attempt to wall off intrastate coal extraction from Clean Water Act obligations will similarly be unsuccessful.
Below is an extensive quote from the Supreme Court decision in the Hodel v. Virginia Surface Mining Association case regarding the authority of Congress to reach intrastate activities such as coal mined and used within one state, and upholding the 1977 federal Act against such a challenge.
“The task of a court that is asked to determine whether a particular exercise of congressional power is valid under the Commerce Clause is relatively narrow. The court must defer to a congressional finding that a regulated activity affects interstate commerce, if there is any rational basis for such a finding. This established, the only remaining question for judicial inquiry is whether "the means chosen by [Congress] must be reasonably adapted to the end permitted by the Constitution." The judicial task is at an end once the court determines that Congress acted rationally in adopting a particular regulatory scheme. Ibid.
Judicial review in this area is influenced above all by the fact that the Commerce Clause is a grant of plenary authority to Congress. This power is "complete in itself, may be exercised to its utmost extent, and acknowledges no limitations, other than are prescribed in the constitution.". Moreover, this Court has made clear that the commerce power extends not only to "the use of channels of interstate or foreign commerce" and to "protection of the instrumentalities of interstate commerce . . . or persons or things in commerce," but also to "activities affecting commerce." [even] activity that is purely intrastate in character may be regulated by Congress, where the activity, combined with like conduct by others similarly situated, affects commerce among the States or with foreign nations."
With respect to surface coal mining, the Supreme Court noted that “Section 101 (c) recites the congressional finding that
"many surface mining operations result in disturbances of surface areas that burden and adversely affect commerce and the public welfare by destroying or diminishing the utility of land for commercial, industrial, residential, recreational, agricultural, and forestry purposes, by causing erosing and landslides, by contributing to floods, by polluting the water, by destroying fish and wildlife habitats, by impairing natural beauty, by damaging the property of citizens, by creating hazards dangerous to life and property by degrading the quality of life in local communities, and by counteracting governmental programs and efforts to conserve soil, water, and other natural resources."
The legislative record provides ample support for these statutory findings. The Surface Mining Act became law only after six years of the most thorough legislative consideration. Committees of both Houses of Congress held extended hearings during which vast amounts of testimony and documentary evidence about the effects of surface mining on our Nation's environment and economy were brought to Congress' attention. Both Committees made detailed findings about these effects and the urgent need for federal legislation to address the problem. The Senate Report explained that
"[surface] coal mining activities have imposed large social costs on the public . . . in many areas of the country in the form of unreclaimed lands, water pollution, erosion, floods, slope failures, loss of fish and wildlife resources, and a decline in natural beauty." S. Rep. No. 95-128, p. 50 (1977).
The denomination of an activity as a "local" or "intrastate" activity does not resolve the question whether Congress may regulate it under the Commerce Clause. As previously noted, the commerce power "extends to those activities intrastate which so affect interstate commerce, or the exertion of the power of Congress over it, as to make regulation of them appropriate means to the attainment of a legitimate end, the effective execution of the granted power to regulate interstate commerce." This Court has long held that Congress may regulate the conditions under which goods shipped in interstate commerce are produced where the "local" activity of producing these goods itself affects interstate commerce. Appellees do not dispute that coal is a commodity that moves in interstate commerce. Here, Congress rationally determined that regulation of surface coal mining is necessary to protect interstate commerce from adverse effects that may result from that activity. This congressional finding is sufficient to sustain the Act as a valid exercise of Congress' power under the Commerce Clause.””
The documented adverse interstate effects of water pollution to all of the river systems draining Kentucky’s coalfields, due to mining activities is more than sufficient to support federal jurisdiction over water permits authorizing discharges of pollutants from mining operations whose products are sold in state.
HB 455 (Stumbo)(H. Tourism Dev & Energy)(-)
Would require Public Service Commission to approve power supply contracts for “qualified pilot biomass energy facilities” that generate electricity at 10 cents per kwH or less, increasing at up to 3% per year.
While KRC supports feed-in-tariffs for renewable energy facilities, there is no indication in the bill as to whether the biomass harvested for energy produced by the facility is sustainable, and that the biomass is harvested in a manner that does not cause adverse effects on forest and forest health or forest products. Additionally, the amount of any feed-in-tariff should not be fixed by statute but instead should be established by the PSC to bridge the gap between avoided fossil-fuel generation costs and costs for generation of renewable energy with a reasonable rate of return.
Bill received a hearing but no vote, and is unlikely to move further this session.
HB 483 (Pullin)(H. Tourism Dev & Energy)(+)
Would limit regulated electric and gas utilities from terminating customers during cold weather.
HJR 27 (Glenn)(H. NR and Env)(+)
Would require public water systems to monitor and report levels of hexavalent chromium in drinking water.
HJR 49 (Fischer, Waide and Gooch)(H. NR And Env)(-)(posted)
Joint resolution would prohibit state and local government from enacting or enforcing any restriction on the emissions of carbon dioxide.
The likely effect of the resolution, if adopted, would be the implementation of a Federal Implementation Plan and partial loss of state and pollution control district permitting jurisdiction over major sources of carbon dioxide. EPA is developing standards for control of carbon dioxide emissions from major stationary sources. The state Division of Air Quality has adopted revisions to state air quality regulations necessary to allow for state implementation of these standards, and this resolution would preclude the state from doing so.
HCR 89 (Marzian)(H. H&W)(+)(posted)
Would urge Congress to amend the Toxics Substances Control Act (TSCA) to update the list of chemicals, prohibit persistent bioaccumulative toxins, and establish new standards to protect children and developing fetuses from unsafe chemical exposure.
HJR 90 (Steele and others)(H. NR and Env)(posted)
Joint Resolution would direct the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources to update the contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers by which the state department manages the “in lieu” fee mitigation program, to eliminate the requirement that "waters for a candidate project not be degraded", and to "include new criteria for stream restoration projects that will improve the biological and chemical characteristics of the water." Intended to direct more monies to elimination of straight pipes, the resolution would effectively end the in lieu fee program since the Corps of Engineers would not accept those contractual changes.
The same resolution calls on the Kentucky Congressional delegation to amend the Clean Water Act to prohibit the EPA and Corps of Engineers from imposing “a discriminatory standard for conductivity” in the Appalachian region. The inclusion of this provision is not mentioned in the title of the resolution, and potentially makes the resolution unconstitutional under Kentucky Constitution Section 51, which provides that no law shall relate to more than one subject and that the subject is to be expressed in the title.
KRC is working with the sponsor to revise the language in order to incorporate septic discharge improvements into in-lieu-fee projects to the extent allowed under the 2008 Compensatory Mitigation Rule.
HCR 126 (Gooch and others)(H. Rules)(-)
Would urge Congress to pass legislation to prohibit EPA from regulating greenhouse gas emissions. While KRC believes that Congressional action to adopt comprehensive GHG legislation is preferable, in the absence of such action, EPA should be able to move forward.
HCR 127 (Gooch and Steele)(H. Rules)(-)
Would express concern about the scope, justification and content of the proposed OSM stream protection rule and recommend that Congress withhold agency funds for enforcement of the rule until the justification is provided.
As part of the development of the rule, OSM will release a draft Environmental Impact Statement which will analyze the direct, indirect and cumulative effects of the proposed rule and of all other alternatives, including no action. The basis for the proposal will be made available to the public.
HCR 128 (Steele)(H. NR & Env)(-)(posted)
Same as HCR 127.
HCR 136 (Combs)(H. Rules)(+)(consent)
Would establish a timber theft and trespass reduction task force to develop consensus recommendations on reducing timber theft and trespass.
Other Bills We’re Tracking
SB 1 (Williams and Leeper)(H. A&R)
Would establish a council to develop recommendations on revisions to revenue statutes, which would be subject to an up-or-down vote by the General Assembly.
SB 4 (Carpenter)(H. Elections and Const Am)(posted)
Would prohibit lobbyist contributions to candidates for statewide office, change election filing deadlines, and amend contribution filing requirements.
SB 5 (Leeper, Hornback)(H. A&R)
Would require appropriations and revenue bills to be available for public review prior to certain legislative actions thereon.
SB 8 (Givens and Wilson)(H. Rules)
Would direct the Secretary of State to develop an electronic “one-stop” portal to facilitate interaction among businesses and governmental agencies in the Commonwealth.
SB 43 (Clark, Shaughnessy)(S. Transp)
Would prohibit imposition of tolls or fees on existing interstates – a response to one proposal to fund the Louisville Ohio River Bridges project.
SB 52 (Stein and others)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would require the Legislative Research Commission to post legislators' requests for reimbursement on the Internet.
SB 53 (Stein and others)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would expand prohibitions on lobbyist giving to include food and beverages (up to $100 per legislator is currently allowed.)
SB 61 (Rhoads)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would allow parks and recreation boards to create landowner incentive programs to encourage opening of private lands for recreational use and tourism development.
SB 80 (Stivers)(S. Nat Res & Energy)
Would amend KRS 278.021 to define circumstances that constitute abandonment of a public utility and create court-supervised receivership process for returning control of the utility or liquidating its assets.
SB 81 (Seum)(S. Eco Dev)
Would allow use of metal detectors in state parks and monuments and require registration with the park or monument office or lodge.
SB 84 (Kerr)(S. State & Local Govt)
Proposed constitutional amendment to eliminate offices of Fiscal Court and County Judge Executive in counties with merged governments.
SB 92 (Givens)(H. Ag & Sm Bus)(posting waived)
Would clarify who is responsible for promulgating regulations to require posting bonds for stockyards not required to file a bond under federal law.
SB 98 (Stein and Neal)(S. Judiciary)
Would expand civil rights protections afforded under Kentucky law to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
SB 113 (Turner)(S. State & Local Govt)
Same as HB 130, it would create a Kentucky Mountain Trail Authority authorized to establish an area for tourism and outdoor recreation opportunities for residents and visitors, to charge fees for access and parking, and to hire rangers for a Kentucky Mountain Regional Recreational Area.
SB 131 (Shaughnessy)(S. Judiciary)
Would subject all records relating to contracts between state universities and entities performing functions on behalf of a university, to Open Records Act provisions.
SB 135 (Westwood)(H. Local Govt)(posted)
Would amend existing law concerning local code enforcement under KRS Chapter 65 to allow Code Enforcement Boards to appoint hearing officers, provide training for hearing officers under KRS Chapter 13B, clarify how citations are served, require specific findings of fact, conclusions of law and recommended orders, and lengthen to 30 from 7 days the time for appealing nuisance citations. Many of these changes are considered by the courts to be essential elements of procedural due process in the administrative hearing arena.
SB 137 (Jones)(S. Nat Res And Energy)
Would amend existing law regarding funding for research into natural gas as a fuel, to allow both public and private universities to be eligible and to make eligible compressed fuel from natural gas and natural gas produced from wells rather than from other fuels stocks.
SB 145 (Denton)(S. Licensing & Occup)
Would repeal and reenact statutes relating to licensure of home inspectors and distinctions between realtor and home inspector licensure.
SB 167 (Denton)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would amend Sections 36 and 42 of the Kentucky Constitution to limit legislative sessions to 30 days each year.
SR 2 (Stivers)
Rules of Procedure for the 2011 Regular Session.
Adopted by voice vote
HB 21 (Wayne)(H. Elections and Const Am)(posted)
Would establish a public financing process for “clean judicial elections” for judicial candidates that choose to participate, managed by the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance and would limit participating candidates to raising no more than $10,000 from at least 50 persons, after which time the fund would provide campaign support depending on the expenditures of nonparticipating opponent(s).
HB 22 (Coursey)(H. NR and Env)
Would establish a certification program for persons installing, repairing, closing or removing petroleum underground storage tanks, managed by the state fire marshal’s office.
HB 29 (Henderson)(S. Ag)
Would create a Historic Farms program allowing designation of heritage farms.
HB 33 (Richards)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would limit mailing of state publications to parties to mailing on request, and provide that reports to the LRC be filed electronically.
HB 36 (Hoover and others) (H. Elections and Const. Am)
Would amend state constitution to prohibit legislators from being paid for special sessions needed to enact a budget.
HB 37 (Hoover and others) (H. A&R)
Would require a 48-hour waiting period prior to a vote on an appropriation or revenue bill or amendment.
HB 44 (Meeks) (To Senate)
Would define who is an "American Indian" under Kentucky law.
HB 45 (Farmer) (H. Elections and Const Am)
Constitutional amendment to eliminate the Office of County Judge in merged city-county governments.
HB 47 (Jenkins)(S. Judiciary)
Would allow local governments to collect “amelioration costs” for nuisances and to impose property liens for such costs.
HB 50 (Meeks)(To Senate)
Would establish a process for state recognition of American Indian tribes.
HB 51 (Meeks)(H. Judiciary)
Would amend existing law concerning archaeological excavation on private property, landowner rights to access to cemeteries on private lands, reinterment of discovered human remains, and unlawful possession of human remains and burial objects.
HB 56 (Crimm and others)(H. Rules)
Would amend current laws concerning cruelty and torture of animals to forfeit ownership of animals involved and to prohibit possession of animals of the same species for two years following conviction.
HB 60 (Montell)(H. NR & Env)
Would require internet posting or notification where requested, of certain violations of drinking water standards.
HB 70 (Crenshaw)(S State & Local Govt)
Would amend Section 145 of the Kentucky Constitution to allow automatic restoration of voting rights to persons who have served their time, except those convicted of treason, intentional killing, sexual conduct with a minor or deviate sexual intercourse; those excluded could still request an executive pardon.
HB 76 (Meeks)(H. Judiciary)
Would amend existing law concerning disposition of historic and prehistoric human remains.
HB 88 (Wuchner and Burch)(H. Ed)
Would establish a goal of increasing time for physical activity to 30 minutes per day or 150 minutes per week in 100% of schools with kindergarten through grade 5 by November 1, 2013
HB 92 (Crimm)(H. Elections and Const Am)
Proposed constitutional amendment to extend House terms to 4 years from two and Senate terms to six years from four.
HB 93 (Nelson)
HB 106 (Marzian and others)(H. Judiciary)
Would amend state civil rights laws to include protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
HB 109 (Pullin)(S. Transp)
Would create a passenger rail transportation advisory board.
HB 115 (Wayne)(H. A&R)
Would require annual reporting to legislature on economic development and tourism project tax incentives and expenditures.
HB 116 (Wayne)(H. A&R)
Would require systematic review by Program Review and Investigations Committee of all tax increment financing, tourism and economic development programs one year before any such program is scheduled to sunset.
HB 119 (Rollins)(S. State and Local Govt)
Would provide for optional adoption by cities of training programs for city officials, including incentives for those being trained.
HB 130 (Hall) (S. State & Local Govt)
Would create a Kentucky Mountain Trail Authority authorized to establish an area for tourism and outdoor recreation opportunities for residents and visitors, to charge fees for access and parking, and to hire rangers for a Kentucky Mountain Regional Recreational Area.
HB 140 (Wuchner and Fischer)(H. State Govt)
Would amend state administrative regulation statute to delay effective date of regulations with a major economic impact to 60 days following adjournment of the next legislative session. “Major economic impact” is defined as an annual economic impact of $500,000 or more.
HB 151 (Riggs)(H. State Govt)
Would require state retirement systems divestiture of any investments in companies doing business in the Sudan.
HB 152 (Jenkins and others)(H. Rules, Recommitted to H. A&R)
Would require Energy and Environment Cabinet to develop a prescription drugs drop-off program.
HB 156 (Jenkins)(H. Judiciary)
Would add failure to provide shelter to list of actions constituting cruety to animals, and define what constitutes adequate shelter for dogs.
HB 157 (Jenkins)(H. Ag and Sm Bus)
Would modify laws concerning impoundment and disposition of animals that are in imminent harm or are cruelly treated or tortured.
HB 159 Withdrawn
HB 161 Withdrawn
HB 163 (Wayne and others)(H. Transp)
Would require helmet for motorcycle riders.
HB 165 (Koenig and Edmonds)(H. Rules)
Would create process for optional consolidation of counties.
HB 166 (McKee and Denham)(S. Rules)(consent)
Would mandate that state parks promote the sale of Kentucky Proud agricultural products.
HB 179 (Nelson)(H. A&R)
Would make legislative conference and free conference committee meetings open to the public.
HB 182 (Owens and others)(H. Banking and Insurance)(posted)
Would cap payday lending APR rate at 36% and require conspicuous posting of charges for services.
HB 193 (Westrom and Watkins)(H. Health and Welfare)(posted)
Would prohibit smoking in and within a reasonable distance outside of public places and places of employment.
HB 195 (Koenig and others)(To Senate)
Would abolish the Kentucky Wood Products Competitiveness Corporation.
HB 196 (Farmer)(H. A&R)
Would expand the sales and use tax base to include certain services, and would raise the rate to 7% from 6%.
HB 203 (Hoover and others)(H. State Govt)
Would require each branch of state government to provide web-based financial information to the public.
HB 216 (Stumbo)(H. H & W)(posted)
Would prohibit smoking in a motor vehicle containing a child under age 17.
HB 223 (Marzian and Palumbo)(H. Veterans)(posted)
Would prohibit manufacture or sale of any baby food or infant formula in reusable packaging that contains bisphenol-A.
HB 226 (Wayne)(H. Local Govt)(posted)
Would clarify that nothing in state law preempts local governments from adopting code and standards relating to fire safety provisions as published by the National Fire Protection Association.
HB 242 (Denham & Pullin)(S. Rules)(consent)
Would require metal recyclers to require proof of ownership or authorization to sell for smelted, burned or melted metals.
HB 247 (Riggs and Floyd)(S. Licensing & Occup)
Would create an advisory committee on radon and a certification program for entities engaged in radon measurement, mitigation and laboratory analysis.
HB 248 (Riggs)(H. Judiciary)(posted)
Would create a claims review board for tort claims based on silica exposure, and alter standards of review and statute of limitations for prosecution of tort claims in civil court.
HB 250 (Koenig and Keene)(S. Licensing & Occup)
Would amend and update law regarding licensure of home inspectors and provide authority for Board of Home Inspectors to take disciplinary action against licensees
HB 266 (Nesler)(H. Ag and Sm Bus)(posted)
Would require country or origin labeling for aquacultural products sold in the Commonwealth.
HB 292 (Burch)(H. Judiciary)
Would abolish the death penalty and direct courts to commute current capital convictions to imprisonment for life without parole or probation.
HB 307 (Thompson)(H. A&R)
Modifies definition of processing for purposes of severance tax to include loading and unloading of natural resources severed and processed outside of the Commonwealth; modifies tax credit for certain limestone sold in interstate commerce.
HB 312 (Damron)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would expand types of sewer agencies granted the power under KRS Chapter 96 to suspend water services for failure to pay sewer charges, to include sewer agencies such as MSD that are not municipally owned or controlled.
HB 316 (Henderson)(H. Elections and Const Am)
Would amend state constitution to extend terms of state senators and representatives, to 6 and 4 years from the current 4 and 2, respectively.
HB 321 (Edmonds)(H. Local Govt)(posted)
Would amend law governing board of adjustment in counties with a consolidated local government to shorten the terms of the members, and to delay enforcement of civil fines and remedial orders.
HB 329 (Denham)(S. State & Local Govt)
Would confirm Executive Order 2010-436 reorganizing management of energy assistance services for low-income households and of weatherization assistance program by Finance and Administration Cabinet.
HB 330 (Stacy)(S. Rules)(consent)
Same bill as Senate Bill 80, would amend KRS 278.021 to define circumstances that constitute abandonment of a public utility and create court-supervised receivership process for returning control of the utility or liquidating its assets.
HB 349 (Yonts)(H. State Govt)
Would create a permanent Government Assessment and Accountability Review Committee within the Legislative Research Commission to monitor the Departments of Corrections and Fish and Wildlife.
HB 351 (Collins)(H. Judiciary)
Would broaden both the duty that all persons have towards those they encounter who are suffering from a physical condition or injury which to a reasonable person would require immediate medical assistance, to render such aid, and the immunity for such assistance. Would also obligate all persons to report felonies that have or are about to be committed, and to report discoveries of bodies encountered.
HB 353 (Nelson)(To Senate)
Would prohibit the Department of Fish and Wildlife and other agencies from releasing species that grow to over 500 pounds, without approval from the county government.
HB 360 (Koenig and Webb-Edgington)(H. Elections and Const Am)
Would propose a constitutional amendment to eliminate the office of constable.
HB 362 (Henderson)(S. Rules)(consent)
Would amend state law regarding ginseng and require licensing of ginseng dealers.
HB 375 (Nemes, Ford)(H. Elections and Const Am)
A proposed constitutional amendment to lengthen the terms of senators from 4 to 6 years and representatives from 2 to 4, and to impose a 3-term limit.
HB 379 (Combs)(H. Rules)
Would modify existing law concerning preservation of archaeological resources and objects of antiquity, to replace “objects of antiquity” with the term “archaeological resource,” which is defined as remains of past human life or activities that are at least fifty years old. Definition also appears to include paleontological specimens that are found in an “archaeological context” within an archaeological site.
HB 406 (Harmon)(H. Judiciary)
Would provide that no private right of action is created by any legislative act unless explicitly set out in the statute, and that courts are not to imply private rights of action.
HB 410 (Gregory)(H. Judiciary)
Would extend rights of action against a non-party that would have been subject to statute of limitations, where defendant in a lawsuit claims that such a third party that is not in the suit caused or contributed to an injury.
HB 433 (McKee)(To Senate)
Would amend waste tire statutes to create a five-member Waste Tire Working Group, would create receipt program for tires contracted for out-of-state processing or disposal.
HB 443 (Marzian)(H. Veterans & Mil Affairs)
Would restrict amount of cadmium that can be contained in articles for use or consumption by children.
HB 471 (Quarles)(H. Elections & Const Am)
Proposed constitutional amendment to limit the number of consecutive years that a Senator or Representative may serve.
HB 475 (Graham)(H. State Govt)
Would expand membership of state Historic Properties Advisory Commission and set qualifications and responsibilities for the position of Director/state curator.
HB 477 (Collins)(H. Rules, recommitted to H.A&R)
Modifies current law requiring the holding of a hearing where a variance is sought from the 1,000 foot spacing requirement for gas wells completed into Devonian shale formations, to allow for a hearing if one is requested within 30 days of service of notice.
HR 1 (Stumbo and Adkins)
House Rules of Procedure for 2011 Session.
HJR 5 (Clark)(H. Eco Dev)(S. Eco. Dev. Tourism & Labor)
Would direct a study be contracted of the effectiveness of economic development incentive programs.
HJR 6 (Lee)(H. Elections, Const Ams)(posted)
Would declare state sovereignty over powers not given the federal government by the Constitution.
HJR 10 (Stacy and others)(H. State Govt)
Would direct the Governor to cease furloughing state employees during 2011-2012 biennium.
HJR 11 (Nelson)(H. State Govt)
Same as HJR 10 but with an emergency clause.
HCR 13 (Wuchner and DeWeese)(S. State & Local Govt)
Concurrent resolution would establish a legislative task force on childhood obesity.
HR 14 (Rollins)(H. Elections and Const Am)
Simple resolution urging Congress to act to amend the U.S. Constitution to prevent corporate control of elections.
HCR 37 (Koenig and others)(To Senate)
Would express support for federal legislation requiring EPA to consider affordability when implementing combined sewer overflow measures.
HCR 98 (Meeks and Marzian)(H. Ag & Sm Bus)(posted)
Concurrent Resolution would create a task force to study and make recommendations on establishing enhancing and elevating urban agriculture and vertical farming in urban and Metropolitan areas in the Commonwealth.
HCR 111 Withdrawn
HCR 124 (Hall and Collins)(H. Tourism, Dev & Energy)
Would create a task force to study the feasibility of electing Public Service Commissioners.