Friday, November 5, 2010

Legislative intel provides firepower needed to combat committees' special interests

Why are committee chairmen in the Kentucky Legislature so important? Because they hold all the power.

If you look at this flow chart on how a bill becomes a law, you will notice that chairmen have special privileges, including the ability to "stall" a bill before it even gets to the chamber floor.

So what happens if a bill comes before a committee that conflicts with the chairman's special interests?

“Committee chairs have enormous power in the commonwealth’s legislature,” said Jim Waters, Bluegrass Institute's vice president of policy and communications. “They have the power to give great momentum to bills they – and their special-interest allies – want passed, and hold up those they don’t.”

How do Kentuckians fight against these special interests? By becoming more active in the legislative process and contacting their legislators.

The Bluegrass Institute has made this especially easy by providing profiles containing comprehensive information for all 138 state legislators. These profiles have been added to under the "Kentucky Legislators" page.

Each profile includes a biography, contact information – including phone numbers and e-mail addresses – and identifies which committees the lawmaker serves on.

In addition to the profiles, the institute has also added pages on House and Senate Committees, as well as Legislature Leadership-- So you'll know just who to contact when that bill you support or oppose comes up.

To read the full press release, click here. To go to the "Kentucky Legislators" page, click here.


Liberty on the Rise said...

This is a great resource for Kentucky. Thank you Bluegrass Institute for addressing a critical part of transparency in our state! These profiles make contacting our legislators so much easier and will hold them accountable to their constituents. How refreshing!

Liberty General said...

Having the committee chairman and legislative leaders identified will help make it easier for Kentucky citizens to contact key lawmakers during legislative sessions when important bills are on the line.

For example, when school choice bills come up, the House Education Committee chairman Carl Rollins should be getting a lot more attention. Also, it will make it easier to know the other committee members.