Joe Sonka 😐 Profile picture
I cover Kentucky state government for Kentucky Public Radio including @LouPublicMedia @wkupublicradio @wkms @889WEKU. I’m over @ other apps now see pinned tweet
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Jan 30, 2023 6 tweets 2 min read
Kentucky Association of School Administrators holding presser in rotunda of addressing the state’s teacher shortage. Gov. Beshear and Rep. Tipton scheduled to speak. Beshear again pitching his plan for 5% raises across board for teachers on top of local raises, plus universal pre-K, citing 11,000 vacancies, KY rankling 44th in teacher and such pay going down when factoring inflation.
Jul 14, 2022 7 tweets 1 min read
In his Thursday presser, Beshear just said there is "a legitimate increase in hospitalizations" of COVID patients in Kentucky. Increasing, but not approaching anywhere near the past spikes.
Jul 13, 2022 4 tweets 2 min read
Jul 12, 2022 4 tweets 2 min read
Biden is announcing five new judicial nominations today, but Chad Meredith is not one of them.… Yesterday, a half dozen Senate Democrats said they would not support Meredith if Biden nominated him -- as WH said would happen weeks ago. Senate Judiciary chair said WH wouldn't tell him what the deal was for Meredith:…
Jun 27, 2022 6 tweets 2 min read
The Oldham Circuit judge just granted State Board of Elections motion to dismiss the Bridgette Ehly recount petition (lost in blowout to Speaker Osborne) because it didn't name and serve Osborne and the county clerk. Ballots/machines to be transferred back to clerk. Ehly's post-primary KREF report shows she raised > $30K after the primary & her bond amount for the recount was $21.7K.

$17.4K of that was loan from herself. Sen. Southworth also gave $400 from her campaign and her husband gave $1,000. Rawlings who beat Massey also donated.
Mar 16, 2022 31 tweets 4 min read
Lawmaker proposes $50M plan to welcome thousands of Ukrainian refugees to Kentucky… via @courierjournal @courierjournal .@d_yetter with background on HB 7 in case you missed it:…
Mar 16, 2022 38 tweets 5 min read
House Licensing committee is under way, taking up HB 606 to legalize sports betting in Kentucky. The first of 4 gambling-related bills this morning. Sponsor and chairman Rep. Koenig is cut off immediately with motion to proceed on bill. Now Family Foundation is testifying against it, saying sports betting is "designed to prey on human weakness"
Mar 15, 2022 16 tweets 3 min read
Kentucky House and Senate set to gavel in an hour earlier than usual today at 1pm in the Old State Capitol. #kyga22 Senate Judiciary on Thursday is taking up HB 269 to prohibit the death penalty for those with a diagnosis of serious mental illness. Already passed the House with 76 votes.
Mar 14, 2022 43 tweets 5 min read
Coming up at 4pm in Kentucky:

- House gavels in for Day 47/60
- Senate gavels in for Day 47/60
- Gov. Beshear's COVID briefing Senate expected to take up SB 4 on governor's executive orders, HB 392 on merchant electric generating facilities and HB 263 to increase felony penalties on child abuse of kids under 12 years old.
Mar 9, 2022 4 tweets 2 min read
Just about every college sports coach in Kentucky will be here in the rotunda for Gov. Beshear’s signing of the NIL bill at 10:30. Cal, Walz, Kyra Elzy & Rhyne Howard seated by each other ahead of Gov. Beshear signing SB 6, the NIL bill
Mar 9, 2022 16 tweets 2 min read
KY Senate budget committee going over changes made to HB 1, the House GOP’s 2-year budget plan Budget passes committee on party-line vote. McGarvey says Democrats still haven’t seen the committee sub and were only briefed on it by McDaniel an hour ago.
Mar 8, 2022 4 tweets 1 min read
Just In: The Kentucky Senate budget committee will finally take up and vote on HB 1 tomorrow morning, the 2-year executive branch budget bill passed by the House in mid-January. This will undoubtedly be a committee sub that we learn the contents of shortly before it is voted on in the 9am meeting.
Mar 8, 2022 11 tweets 2 min read
Kentucky House and Senate have gaveled in for Day 42 of the session. Kentucky House now taking up HB 51 to ban local school districts from having mask mandates.
Mar 8, 2022 12 tweets 2 min read
KY House State Govt committee about to meet. They will take up HB 28, the original version of which would have prohibited governments, colleges & private employers from enacting rules requiring employees/customers of disclosing vaccine status & prohibiting discrimination on that The committee sub for HB 28 that I've seen completely throws out the prohibition on private employers doing so. This one is sponsored by Rep. Savannah Maddox and has been a big cause of the anti-vax/mask mandate crowd going back to last year.
Mar 8, 2022 4 tweets 2 min read
And there it is, HB 28 to ban private employers from having vaccine rules is scheduled to get a hearing and vote in House State Govt committee tomorrow. In addition to the economic development mystery shell bill I mentioned earlier, this State Govt committee will also have an additional mystery shell bill in HB 516. I’m also told HB 28 will have a committee sub that isn’t public yet.
Mar 7, 2022 12 tweets 2 min read
At the top of the hour in Kentucky:

- House gavels in
- Senate gavels in
- Gov. Beshear presser Kentucky new cases and positivity still big down ImageImage
Mar 7, 2022 4 tweets 1 min read
Kentucky Public Pension Oversight Board is about to start its meeting. It's possible that a certain Russian bank investment and sale could come up.… Oh, they're opening with this. Beau Barnes of TRS testifying.
Mar 6, 2022 4 tweets 1 min read
More Cayuts Treasure. Hunt.
Feb 17, 2022 8 tweets 1 min read
The Kentucky House and Senate have gaveled in. The Senate has music, not the Indigo Girls, though. House now voting on HB 301, the "Stop Outside Influence Over Elections Act." This is the so-called "Zuckerbucks" bill that made its way out of committee last week.
Feb 17, 2022 7 tweets 2 min read
Sec. of State Adams announcing Judge Wingate has denied Kentucky Democratic Party's motion for temporary injunction to block the new state House and Congress maps for 2022 primary. AG Cameron also weighing in on ruling:
Feb 17, 2022 8 tweets 1 min read
Kentucky House Elections committee taking up HB 475, a constitutional amendment to allow local governments to modernize and diversify their tax structure. Details on the proposal are a little vague. Chambers of commerce testifying for HB 475, says it will allow local governments flexibility on taxes and not make them over reliant on occupational taxes or taxing "production."

Bill has bipartisan sponsors.