Can’t Decide If It’s A Good Or Bad News Day

Does anyone remember when non-white fearer Ray Jones was defending and obfuscating the UMG and MWD? Funny how it turns out that Jones is a lying liar when it comes to that fancy audit that rocked Eastern Kentucky’s political world. Something tells me he’s got something to hide and that’s why all those records are still under lock and key. [Williams Daily News]

For fourth year in a row, Congressman John Yarmuth has donated his entire salary to 27 charities. More wealthy electeds from Kentucky should follow suit. But they never do. [The ‘Ville Voice]

Woah. Doing business in Greece sounds a lot like trying to do business in Kentucky. I’ll bet Greece doesn’t have some crazy ass label tax, though. [NY Times]

My favorite thing about the Herald-Leader is that it doesn’t bother with half the solid and import pieces of legislation floating in Frankfort at this very moment. And, of course, that it doesn’t bother mentioning than several important pieces of legislation haven’t even been filed yet. [H-L]

Mitch McConnell is STILL threatening a shut-down of the government! Because he apparently wants his ego to be as big as mine. So I have a message for Mitch: Pull those pantyhose up and get to work. Because you suck at being a good press whore. [Politico]

Egypt is absolutely jacked up. There’s no other way to describe it. [HuffPo]

Fox News sure is good at locating Egypt on a map. What was that about being accurate and such, again? [Wonkette]

The Kentucky Division of Abandoned Mine Lands received a million bucks in federal funding for stream restoration. The state says the funding will “address acid mine drainage problems.” [Press Release]

Way to go, Republicans. Paying China first seems like it’ll really get this country somewhere. [Business Insider]

I don’t even know what he’s talking about. But I don’t like watch the state flush a few more million down the drain. [Ralph Long]

Several Eastern Kentucky counties are passing measures to ban pain clinics from setting up shop. Keeping pill mills out of the region could be a good thing or it may not even matter. Just means folks will have to drive further to get their sneaky fix. [H-L]

That Florida judge who says Nobama Carez is scary and illegal? He’s from Cadiz, Kentucky. [Wikipedia]

Trey Grayson Bid Farewell To The Commonwealth

Late last week, Secretary of State Trey Grayson bid farewell to the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Here’s his goodbye letter:

Dear fellow Kentuckians:

It has been an honor to serve the Commonwealth as Secretary of State since January of 2004. I cannot thank you enough for this opportunity.

Recently, Harvard University asked me to become the next Director of its Institute of Politics, and I have accepted the offer. My tenure as your Secretary of State will end tomorrow, at Noon.

I am proud to leave the office in a sound fiscal shape that is a more efficient and better resource for Kentuckians than ever before. We have worked with Democrats and Republicans in the General Assembly to pass several legislative packages that have empowered Kentucky’s business and election laws. I am grateful for the outstanding work of our employees who have transformed the office into a 24-hour service center that is a model not only for Kentucky but for the nation.

Read the rest after the jump…

Read more…

We Can Stop Meth Without Silly Legislation

We’ve made it quite clear where we stand on the matter of requiring prescriptions for over-the-counter allergy medication. Sure, there’s a meth problem, but even law enforcement officials say proposed legislation (HB 15 & SB 45) won’t cut down on the manufacturing of the drug.

Not only will the legislation make it more difficult for you to buy some allergy medications for your kid in the middle of the night – if you don’t have access to a 24-hour physician – as this letter writing initiative from the Consumer Health Products Association points out:


Full Disclosure: They’re an advertiser on our sites, which only came about on Friday, well after we’d made our editorial position known.

The legislation could also make it more difficult for law enforcement to track and pinpoint producers of meth.

And is that really progress? I don’t think so.

Seriously – click here to send a letter to your state legislator urging them to oppose these junk bills. It’s quick and easy to do. Should also probably have your Facebook and Twitter pals do the same.

Some Thoughts On The Mountain Water District

Since Thursday the mainstream press in Kentucky has been buzzing about the audit of the Mountain Water District almost as much as Frankfort.

But there’s something being lost in most of the discussion that I feel we need to address a bit more directly.

While, legally, State Auditor of Public Accounts Crit Luallen has access to Utility Management Group’s records based on Kentucky’s Open Records law, the Auditor also has access to said documents (with MWD/UMG are illegally refusing to provide in an attempt to hide whatever it is they’re trying to hide from public scrutiny) because, by law, the Auditor can review public works.

Here’s what the Kentucky Revised Statutes and the audit have to say about it:

KRS 43.050(2)(c) (Warning: External PDF Link) requires the Auditor to “[e]xamine periodically the . . . management . . . of all . . . public works . . . in the conduct or management of which the state has any financial interest or legal power . . ..” MWD receives state funds to partially fund water and sewer construction projects. Because UMG manages the operations of MWD that are partially funded by the state, the state has a financial interest over UMG’s management and operation of MWD. UMG, therefore, is subject to the Auditor’s authority to conduct an examination of UMG’s management and operation of MWD. KRS 43.080 (Warning: External PDF Link) authorizes the Auditor to access the records it needs to conduct its audits and examinations of public works.

The state’s various newspapers loosely touched of the Open Records laws – which is good – but it needs to be said that there is much stronger legal ground for gaining access to those records than some simple Sunshine Regulations. It is important not to let that get lost in the press.

Oh Snap Monday! Frankfort Gets Wild This Week

The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority Board of Directors, which gives away your tax dollars to help Steve Beshear get re-elected, is at least as frustrating as frustrating and ridiculous as a difficult-to-open bottle of Bufferin that your meemaw just gave up trying to open. What an offensive way to flush millions upon millions of dollars down the drain while this state continues to sink to the bottom of every list, ever, forever and ever. [Ralph Long]

What is good news for coal miners is bad news for the environment. Meanwhile, people like Steve Beshear will continue use the issue to pander for votes. [The Economist]

House Republicans are now attempting to redefine “rape.” That’s pretty remarkable stuff. [Gawker]

We’ve previously discussed the Massey Energy sale to Alpha Natural Resources. But here’s the big city take on things. [NY Times]

Mitch McConnell spoke out on the chaos in Egypt. It’s a shame that he, as the most powerful U.S. Senator in the country, won’t take more of a loud stance on the issue. There’s something to be said for his efforts not to turn this into a partisan shouting match, however. [WYMT]

Really wanna save the state some money? Then you’ve gotta spend a little money to do so. Re-staff Jack Conway’s offices so we can fight the waste, fraud and abuse of state tax dollars. (Yes, I’m talking about the office and not about Jack, specifically) [H-L]

Ignoring health realities is an ignorant want to do business in Kentucky. The Commonwealth should definitely enact statewide smoking restrictions. We wanna require a prescription for Claritin D – after it’s been over the counter for a couple years – but don’t wanna do anything about these cancer-causing sticks? Yeah, that’s smart. No wonder the entire country laughs at Kentucky on a regular basis. [Enquirer]

Elaine Walker was sworn in as Kentucky’s interim Secretary of State on Saturday. This means exactly nothing. But I bet it’ll be nice for her to have that job for a few minutes. Then she’ll realize it’s a lot more work than she’s capable of handling while also running a losing campaign. [WBKO]

Dear Joe: Surely you’re not just now realizing that the Bowling Green Daily News is run by a bunch of folks who wet their pants any time Rand Paul takes a breath. [B&P]

Steve Riggs rightly says the racist immigration bill is a waste of time. Basically, it’s dead in the house and it’s a shame Riggs didn’t have the guts to say so. [Bluegrass Politics]

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has convened an unprecedented meeting of America’s 260 embassies. [HuffPo]