GUEST POV | Kentucky's 2017 General Assembly
The 2017 Kentucky General Assembly ended in Frankfort Thursday night, and even though it was only a short, 30-day session, it was historic.
By Dave Adkisson
President and CEO, Kentucky Chamber of Commerce
The 2017 Kentucky General Assembly ended in Frankfort Thursday night, and even though it was only a short, 30-day session, it was historic. The first five days – back in January – were probably the most productive five days in the history of the legislature.
From the beginning, legislative leaders kept a clear business-minded focus on “How can we move Kentucky forward?” “How can we create more quality jobs?”
Several key measures that the business community has advocated for years were approved:
A right to work law that will encourage more companies to locate in Kentucky.
Repeal of the prevailing wage law, so public construction projects can be bid at market rates.
Several bills aimed at improving the legal climate for businesses.
Allowing charter schools that can improve education in some areas of Kentucky.
Civil justice reforms that will help ex-offenders get jobs and become productive.
And a bill to modernize our telecommunications laws.
Even with all of these victories, two huge issues facing Kentucky had to wait: public pensions and tax reform.
Everyone is currently waiting on a report from the state’s pension experts about how deep a financial hole we’re in with our public pension systems. That report is expected in the next few months, and the problem will hopefully be tackled in a special session of the legislature later this year……probably coupled with tax reform.
On behalf of the Kentucky Chamber, we applaud the success of the 2017 General Assembly. We look forward to working with the governor and legislature to solve these and other challenges we face.
I’m Dave Adkisson, and that’s my Point of View.