The Kentucky General Assembly returned to Frankfort Feb. 7 for the remainder of the 2023 legislative session. Friday marked the 8th day of the 30-day session, which is scheduled to end March 30.
KACP is working closely with The Kentucky League of Cities (KLC) and Rep. Walker Thomas, R-Hopkinsville, on legislation that would create a Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP), to help address retention issues. The legislation is being drafted. A DROP is a voluntary benefits plan that allows members to receive a one-time lump sum payment, after serving a predetermined amount of time, in addition to their monthly retirement benefit distribution. Members can elect to participate in the plan after reaching becoming eligible for retirement. The bill is KACP’s top legislative priority for the session.
SB101, employment contracts
Sponsored by Sen. Johnnie Turner, R-Harlan, the legislation extends contracts subject to reimbursement for training costs to five years for law enforcement officers, including sheriff’s deputies and officers working for state universities and airports. The bill has 9 co-sponsors and has been assigned to the Senate Veterans, Military Affairs & Public Protection Committee.
SB89, urban county government law enforcement officers
Filed by Sen. Donald Douglas, R-Lexington, allows urban-county governments (Lexington) to reemploy police officers who have retired from the urban-county government police. Assigned to Senate State & Local Government Committee.
HB207, wellness programs, Early Intervention System
Sponsored by Rep. Kevin Bratcher, R-Louisville, the legislation would allow law enforcement departments to create a wellness program featuring an Early Intervention System (EIS). An EIS allows an officer to seek and receive confidential counseling and other services and treatment and the information revealed by the officer would, in most cases, not be subject to the Open Records law and could not be used in court proceedings. Assigned to House Judiciary Committee.
LEGISLATION KACP SUPPORTS
HB64, Police officer certification
Sponsored by Reps. Myron Dossett, R-Pembroke, Wade Wilson, R-Earlington- the retired chief of Madisonville – extend the period of time that a peace officer, who was employed as a peace officer as of December 1, 1998, may be separated from service before losing his or her certification status from 100 days to 365 days. Awaiting committee assignment.
HB219, Workers’ comp
Filed by Rep. Rebecca Raymer, R-Morgantown, the legislation allows “injury” to include psychological injuries for law enforcement officers and other first responders; creates a new section of KRS Chapter 342 to establish when psychological injuries are valid workers’ compensation claims when no physical injury exists. Awaiting committee assignment.
HB223, Police officer mental health
Filed by Rep. Chris Freeland, R-Benton, the bill would require law enforcement agencies to have a written policy related to police officer mental health programs that would allow offices to receive additional leave time to attend mental health treatment, require supervisors to receive specialized training on supporting officers with mental health needs; provide workplace protections for officers who receive mental health treatment; allow officers to receive reimbursement for the cost of mental health treatment as funding becomes available. Awaiting committee assignment.
LEGISLATION KACP FOLLOWING
Rep. Savannah Maddox, R-Dry Ridge, has introduced two firearms-related bills:
- HB138 would allow holders of concealed carry licenses to carry firearms in local government buildings, in public schools, on college and university campuses and airports.
- HB118 would lower the age requirement for a carry a concealed weapon from 21 to 18.
Both bills awaiting committee assignments.
HB12, Banning use of hand-held devices while driving.
Sponsored by Rep. James Tipton, R-Taylorsville, the bill would prohibit the use of a personal communication device or stand-alone electronic devices – mobile/smart phones, iPads, etc. – while operating a motor vehicle. Awaiting committee assignment.
HB22, Recreational cannabis
Sponsored by Rep. Rachel Roberts, D-Newport, the bill would legalize recreational marijuana. Awaiting committee assignment.
HB47, Relating to cannabis.
Sponsored by Rep. Nima Kulkarni, D-Louisville, make possession of a personal use quantity of cannabis exempt from civil or criminal penalty. Awaiting committee assignment.
SB41, Sheriffs expanded jurisdiction.
Filed by Sen. Mike Nemes, R-Shepherdsville, would give sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, special deputy sheriffs, and pre-certified deputies’ statewide authority. KACP opposes the bill in its current form but is working with the Kentucky Sheriff’s Association (KSA) on changes. KSA agrees that changes need to be made, and its intent in supporting the bill is to make it easier for sheriff’s deputies to respond to emergencies in other counties. Assigned to Senate Veterans, M
Military Affairs & Public Protection Committee
Feb. 20: Presidents Day holiday; legislature not in session
Feb. 21: Last day for introduction of new Senate bills
Feb. 22: Last day for introduction of new House bills
March 17-28: Veto recess
March 29-30: Final legislative days
FOR MORE INFO
As always, questions, suggestions, comments or concerns can be directed to Executive Director Shawn Butler, who can be reached at 859-743-2920 or firstname.lastname@example.org