Proud of progress, but many pressing issues remain

Published 4:06 pm Friday, February 24, 2017

Rep. David Meade (R-STANFORD)

FRANKFORT — Last week marked a return to work by the General Assembly for the second part of the 2017 session and the quick pace picked right back up.
I attended Governor Matt Bevin’s State of the Commonwealth address and his Prayer Breakfast, which were both inspiring and humbling at the same time. However, the highlight of my week was the Pro-Life Rally in the Capitol, which saw an incredibly large group of Kentuckians come together to celebrate our faith and respect for the sanctity of human life. I am more proud than ever to have been able to stand up during the first week of session with the majority of my colleagues and pass legislation to protect life.
Despite a historic first week of session in January, which saw passage of an unprecedented seven bills, including several critical pro-job bills and two monumental pro-life bills, Kentucky is still faced with many pressing issues.
When Gov. Bevin delivered the State of the Commonwealth this week, he outlined a path forward that includes fixing our state’s multi-billion dollar unfunded pension liability, improving and making more accessible the adoption process, bettering foster care, fixing our broken Medicaid system and delivering more jobs to Kentuckians.
As your representative, I take very seriously the responsibility Kentucky has to its teachers and state workers to deliver on the promise of retirement. For years, hardworking state workers have carried the torch of the Commonwealth, only to have decades of mismanagement place their retirements on shaky ground. To me, there is no single issue more important than finding a solution and fixing this system and I appreciate the Governor’s leadership and shared commitment. I have great confidence we will find a correction and I look forward to pushing ahead on this issue.
Another pressing concern that the governor addressed in the State of the Commonwealth is tax reform. For far too long we have been operating under an antiquated system that is no longer applicable to modern times. Due to much work that needs to be done on both tax reform and pension reform, we will likely see a special session later in the year dedicated solely to them.
As a member of the majority leadership team, I am incredibly proud to report that through the efficiency of the hiring process, we have been able to save more than $700,000 annually in staffing costs compared to the previous majority. Hard working Kentuckians deserve every single consideration regarding their tax dollars and our caucus will always work to that end.
Kentucky is on the brink of incredible success and we have taken big steps in a short time in 2017. I’m honored to be a part of positive change and I look forward to being a part of even more solutions as we work through the remaining 21 days of this year’s short session.
As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me if there is anything I can help you with. You can reach me at 502-564-8100 or by email david.meade@lrc.ky.gov. You can also track bills and happenings in the legislature at LRC.ky.gov. Have a blessed rest of the week!