Throughout the year, Commerce Lexington’s Public Policy Council researches, analyzes and discusses important policy issues from the perspective of how it may affect the Central Kentucky business community, then recommends advocacy position statements. The group is comprised of more than 45 volunteer leaders and represents a cross section of Commerce Lexington’s 1,700 member organizations. Commerce Lexington’s Executive Board reviews and approves the Policy Statements recommended by the Public Policy Council.
Please take a few minutes to review the 2018 Legislative Focus to learn about issues we will be tracking on behalf of the business community at the local, state and federal levels this year.
In January, state lawmakers return to Frankfort for a 60-day legislative session. The “long session” occurs in even-numbered years. The primary focus will be on reforms to the state’s financially troubled public pension systems, and the crafting of the next $20 billion two-year state budget and road plan. Tax reform is also expected to be discussed. Without pension or tax reform, the Governor and General Assembly members may have to make significant cuts to state government to balance the state’s budget as is required.
Other priority issues include: workers compensation system reforms, medical liability reforms to improve the healthcare economy and essential skills legislation aimed at focusing schools on soft skills development. Commerce Lexington will be hosting its Annual Evening in the Bluegrass on February 22 at Berry Hill Mansion from 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. The reception offers members with the opportunity to engage with legislators and administration officials.
At the local level, Commerce Lexington will continue to monitor regulatory, environmental and other economic development issues. The chamber continues to be focused on local and state policy efforts to improve the education and workforce development systems. This includes the partnership with the Business and Education Network (BEN) and work to identify current and future workforce needs and develop a plan to meet those needs through collaborative community partnerships such as the Fayette County Public Schools Career Academies.
In July, Commerce Lexington will take a delegation of regional business and community leaders to Washington, D.C., for a two-day Fly-In. The visit will include meetings with members of the Kentucky Congressional Delegation and their staffs to discuss the impact of federal policies on local businesses.
Commerce Lexington will also host the Public Policy Luncheon series presented by Kentucky American Water. The purpose of the events is to educate members about key policy issues and offer opportunities for members to engage with key policy leaders.
HOW TO CONTACT LEGISLATORS:
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
If you have questions, need assistance with a policy issue, or would like to get involved with advocacy efforts, contact Andi Johnson, Chief Policy Officer and Director of Regional Engagement, at [email protected] or (859) 226-1614.