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The first week of the General Assembly was a busy one with about 300 bills filed, committee assignments distributed, and the Governor’s State of the Commonwealth Address.
I have been assigned to the Appropriations and Revenue Committee, the Education Committee, the State and Local Government Committee, and the Transportation Committee. In addition, I am pleased to report that I have been appointed the Chairman of the Budget Review Subcommittee on Transportation.
Finally, many of the senators and representatives gathered in the House chamber for a joint session of the two bodies, the House of Representatives and the Senate, for the Governor’s State of the Commonwealth Address where he reports on where we are as a state and provides his vision for the future. I was disappointed not to hear a more innovative approach to solving our current budgetary difficulties. State government cannot and should not be immune to the same fiscal constraints that are affecting the citizenry of this state. We must do more with less. We have a spending problem, not a revenue problem. That said, it is the Senate’s intention to work together with whoever will come to the table with us in good faith. We must come up with common-sense solutions to the challenges that face us all.
Each week I’ll report on our work in Frankfort, but to truly be your servant at the Capitol, I need your input. In addition to following news reports and reading my dispatches, you can keep up with legislative action through the Kentucky Legislature Home Page and the General Assembly’s toll-free phone lines, or our free e-mail news service. You can also always call me at home at (270) 692-6945.
The Kentucky Legislature Home Page, www.lrc.ky.gov, provides information on each of Kentucky’s senators and representatives, including our phone numbers, addresses, and committee assignments. The home page also provides summaries and texts of bills under consideration, as well as information on the daily progress each bill has made through the legislative process.
By going to our eNews page, www.lrc.ky.gov/pubinfo/listserv.htm, you can subscribe to frequent e-mail updates on what’s happening at the Capitol. You can also stay in touch with General Assembly action in the following ways:
• Hear a taped message containing information on legislative committee meetings is updated daily at 1-800-633-9650.
• Leave a message for any legislator by calling the General Assembly’s toll-free Message Line at 1-800-372-7181. People with hearing difficulties may leave messages for lawmakers by calling the TTY Message Line at (808) 896-0305.
Sen. Jimmy Higdon (R-Lebanon) represents the 14th District including Marion, Mercer, Nelson, Taylor, and Washington counties.