March promises many things here in Kentucky; for us in the Senate it is preparing for the most difficult part of the job, the biennial budget. As we await the House to pass its version, legislation continues in our chamber.
Last week Senate Bill 7 was signed by Governor Beshear. The new law will allow nurse practitioners to prescribe medication without a physician as long as they meet the requirements. Ultimately this will provide more access to medical care, especially for citizens in rural areas.
Senate Bill 105 passed this week. The bill changes statute language to allow newspaper deliverers to be contract employees, not employees of the newspapers. Newspaper carriers act as contractors as it stands, and this change allows the law to reflect what is in practice.
Senate Bill 23 will help small businesses compete. Currently, movers have to receive approval from their competitors before receiving a certificate to be able to operate. This bill changes the language so that companies seeking to operate as movers can go directly to the transportation cabinet for that certification. This allows more competition in the marketplace and helps keep prices competitive for consumers.
Senate Bill 84 also passed. It requires entities that buy cars for scrap to run the vehicle identification number and make sure no liens or delinquent taxes exist. If such exists, the business cannot accept the vehicle.
Senate Bill 118 passed and will benefit families and individuals with eye conditions. The legislation permits eye drops to be refilled more frequently and requires insurers to cover an additional bottle of prescription eye drops once every three months if needed for a child in day care or school. It is critical that children with glaucoma have access to these drops to maintain their sight and eye health.
I invite you to come to Frankfort for hearings of interest to you. Citizens are always welcome in our committee meetings. You can also view live-streaming and archived coverage of legislative proceedings at www.ket.org.