Demanding to make the contract negotiations between the teachers’ union and the Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) more open to the public, African-American pastors in Louisville have made it very clear – they are totally fed up with the school district’s endemic under-performance for children of color.
WDRB has printed comments here.
This letter was published in the Courier-Journal on Thursday, June 20, 2013.
Have you noticed that state lawmakers find themselves in gridlock, completely incapable of swift action in every arena of policy except when it comes to spending your hard-earned money to line their own pockets?
For instance, the 2011 General Assembly deliberated for months about allowing Kentuckians to continue purchasing over-the-counter cold medications for their families without a doctor’s prescription. However, in 2005, HB 299 — which greatly increased legislators’ pension benefits — was rushed through the entire legislature in a single day.
Any reasonable person would agree that politicians should spend more time debating the Commonwealth’s biennial budget or its huge unfunded public-pension liabilities than arguing about liberty-busting measures involving cold medication. Imagine if all proposed legislation enhancing politicians’ personal benefits was deliberated for two consecutive legislative sessions before votes were cast. That extra time would allow for thorough vetting of bills, not only by legislators but also by taxpayers, media and policy experts. Rushing through legislation enhancing part-time state legislators’ benefits screams: “We are hiding something, and you won’t like what you find.”
Kentucky taxpayers should demand that the General Assembly require at least two consecutive sessions for any policy that enhances legislators’ benefits. That’s the kind of legislation worth rushing.
Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions
Lexington, Ky. 40504
The latest threat to our rights as Kentucky parents to educate our children in ways that best fit each child’s needs comes from a federally imposed, one-size-fits-every-state educational directive known as the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).
Father used to know best. Now nameless, faceless edu-crats inform us that without their blessed intellectual ingenuity, we out here in common-sense America would be clueless as to what our children should be learning.
The leftist National Governors Association and its union-friendly counterparts at the Council of Chief State School Officers are trying to force the CCSS, which they developed, upon us because they apparently believe that Kentucky parents are incapable of figuring out how to help rather than hinder the education of our children.
Senate President Robert Stivers said in an interview posted today with “Pure Politics” anchor Ryan Alessi that while he believes that while state law allows Gov. Steve Beshear to join Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion, which will add 308,000 Kentuckians to the government-run health program, it was wrong not to include the legislature.
Stivers, R-Manchester, noted that way too many unanswered questions remain about the impact of adding 308,000 Kentuckians to the Medicaid rolls. Here are the questions he said Beshear needs to answer:
“What are the raw dollars that are going to be spent here?”
“What’s going to happen in three years?”
“What is it going to mean in three years when it not a pure federal contribution, which is still your tax dollars?”
“What’s going to be the phase-in period?”
“What type of match money (is Kentucky) going to have to have?”
“How many health-care providers are we short?”
“What is going to be the economic impact to our communities?”
“What’s going to be the health impact to our communities?”
“This is something … that’s gonna cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars at some point in time. Do we have that ability to do that?”
“The overall cost: I’ve heard as high as $2 billion of federal tax dollars being spent. Do we want to do that?”
While a legal battle is being waged in state courts by tea party activists over whether Beshear has the right to act in such a unilateral manner – especially when it involves the expenditure of tax dollars – Stivers said one thing is for sure: whether the program is funded by federal or state dollars, Kentucky taxpayers will foot the bill.