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February 29, 2024 10:05am

Legislative Updates: Week Seven

The Capitol is experiencing a rare quiet day as the legislature observes the President’s Day holiday. This short week is sure to be a busy one with the bill filing deadlines approaching. Here are some updates from the past week in Frankfort:

Legislative Updates:

Horizons Act

Childcare and early childhood education are a hot topic of discussion this session. Last week, Senate Families and Children Committee Chair Danny Carroll filed a sweeping bill that would invest $300 million dollars into childcare and its industry. SB 203 includes the establishment of childcare entrepreneurship programs in the community college system, expanding eligibility for childcare assistance programs, and creates innovation funds to explore new approaches to the childcare shortage. This bill has been assigned to committee for a hearing. GLI is proud to be part of a coalition of partners supporting this critical legislation. Read more about this important issue in a recent GLI opinion piece.

Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles are one step closer to hitting Kentucky roads after the House passed HB 7, which allows vehicles without a driver onto state roads once they meet certain criteria including a $1 million dollar liability insurance policy. In addition to an insurance plan, the owner of the vehicle would also need to submit to Kentucky state police how to get in contact with the operation center and how to safely remove the vehicle from the road. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Clean Slate Legislation

Both chambers filed bills to implement an automatic expungement process for specific eligible misdemeanors and felonies. SB 218 and HB 569 would create a pathway for those with specific offenses on their criminal record to have them automatically removed. This would open opportunities for reentry that were not previously accessible. GLI is proud to have supported legislation like this in the past and will continue to support these bills moving forward.

JCPS Review and Development

Rep. Ken Fleming filed HCR 81 last week to establish a taskforce to review JCPS. This taskforce would be part of a three-part approach to auditing the district including a full audit by the auditor and a report by the office of educational accountability. The resolution would establish an interim taskforce to review the executive guidance and procedures by leadership and focus on the best practices to get the most money to the classrooms. This resolution has been assigned to House Education Committee. GLI is in conversations with legislators, JCPS, and other stakeholders on this resolution.