State Representative Keith Hall of Pike County shirked his duties in Frankfort, as we told you last week, to attend the SEC in Tampa.
Russ Cassady of the Appalachian News-Express has picked up on it:
A majority of state legislators were present for voting on Thursday and Friday of last week, as agreements were reached on CATS testing and transportation bills.
But, 93rd District state Rep. W. Keith Hall, who represents a large section of Pike County, was not in Frankfort. Hall said he was in Tampa, Fla., with his family, watching SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament games. Hall’s absence in Frankfort and presence in Tampa has received some statewide attention, with a mention on the Louisville-based pageonekentucky.com Web site, which said Hall “shirked” his duties.
Hall said he left Frankfort last week under the impression nothing important was going to occur Thursday and Friday, because of a “tug-of-war” between the House and Senate, and believes he was correct.
“I was told before I went, ‘Keith, not a lot’s going to happen because we’re waiting on House bills to be passed in the Senate, they’re waiting on Senate bills to be passed in the House. The chess game and tug-of-war’s taking place and not a whole lot’s going to take place,’” Hall said.
The session has been a rocky one for Hall, who ignited controversy by filing HB 119, which would have decreased the number of mine emergency medical technicians (METs) required at smaller mines. Mine safety advocates said the bill would weaken mine safety measures passed just two years ago.
Hall was also criticized for the bill because coal reserves he owns are mined by a company which would benefit from the bill. Hall said he receives a percentage royalty from the mining company on each ton mined.
He eventually backed away from the bill, which did not pass and is unlikely to be revived this session.
Yeah, we must be really crazy for having the nerve to suggest our elected officials remain on duty while the legislature is in session. Wasted tax dollars should mean nothing to us, obviously, because they apparently mean nothing to Keith Hall.
Thanks to the News-Express for staying on top of those who are elected to represent eastern Kentucky.