Author

Liam Niemeyer

Liam Niemeyer

Liam covers government and policy in Kentucky and its impacts throughout the Commonwealth for the Kentucky Lantern. He most recently spent four years reporting award-winning stories for WKMS Public Radio in Murray.

Runway project at Bluegrass Station loses key support after local outcry

By: - February 27, 2024

FRANKFORT — Key supporters of a proposed airport expansion at Bluegrass Station, a state-owned industrial park at Avon in Fayette County, have changed their tunes after strong local pushback. Sen. Steve West, who represents Bourbon County, on Tuesday became the latest to abandon his earlier support for including the project in the next state budget. […]

Bill targeting source-of-income discrimination bans in Kentucky’s largest cities heads to governor’s desk

By: - February 27, 2024

FRANKFORT — Legislation that critics say would undermine ordinances in Lexington and Louisville that ban discrimination by landlords against a prospective tenant’s source of income is headed to Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear’s desk.  House Bill 18, sponsored by Rep. Ryan Dotson, R-Winchester, won final passage Tuesday in the Kentucky House of Representatives after the Kentucky […]

Bill could jeopardize protection put in place 17 years ago after death of Harlan County miner

By: - February 25, 2024

A long-time mine safety advocate says a bill approved by a Kentucky House committee will put coal miners at risk by undoing a key protection in a 2007 law. Tony Oppegard, a former mine inspector and attorney working nearly two decades representing coal miners and their families in wrongful death cases and other litigation, was […]

Rep. Phillip Pratt.

House GOP approve bill loosening Kentucky child labor law

By: - February 22, 2024

FRANKFORT — Republicans in the GOP-dominated Kentucky House of Representatives approved Thursday legislation allowing some teenagers to work longer and later hours over strong opposition from their Democratic colleagues. House Bill 255, sponsored by Rep. Phillip Pratt, R-Georgetown, repeals Kentucky’s existing child labor laws and aligns them with federal laws, which are less restrictive for […]

Bill promoting nuclear energy in Kentucky advanced by Senate committee

By: - February 21, 2024

FRANKFORT — The University of Kentucky would be home to a new authority to develop nuclear energy’s potential in the state, including identifying sites for nuclear reactors and other facilities, under a bill approved Wednesday by the Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee.  Senate Bill 198, sponsored by Sen. Danny Carroll, R-Benton, a long-time advocate […]

Senate passes another bill critics say would override Lexington’s new tenant protections

By: - February 20, 2024

FRANKFORT — The Kentucky Senate approved a House bill Tuesday that critics say would override protections for tenants against discrimination based on their source of income in Kentucky’s two largest cities. The Senate approved a similar bill of its own last month, and the debate Tuesday on House Bill 18, sponsored by Rep. Ryan Dotson, […]

Kentucky Senate takes aim at ‘harassing’ drones photographing livestock, food production

By: - February 15, 2024

FRANKFORT — A bill backed by Kentucky’s poultry industry and approved by the Senate Thursday would subject drone operators to new restrictions that opponents warn could help hide health and safety hazards in food production. Critics worry that Senate Bill 16, sponsored by Sen. John Schickel, a Republican from Northern Kentucky, could criminalize more activities […]

Bill loosening Kentucky child labor laws clears House committee

By: - February 15, 2024

FRANKFORT — Some Kentucky teenagers could work longer and later hours —  something critics say threatens youngsters’ safety and success in life — under a bill approved by a House committee Thursday with Republican support. House Bill 255, sponsored by Rep. Phillip Pratt, R-Georgetown, would repeal Kentucky’s existing child labor laws and align them with […]

House budget slams the brakes on future electric vehicle purchases by some state agencies

By: - February 14, 2024

FRANKFORT — Auto manufacturers are investing billions in Kentucky to build electric vehicles, but some state agencies wouldn’t be able to buy them under a mandate from the Republican House. The two-year state spending plan passed by the GOP-dominated House this month would require various state agencies looking to buy new vehicles to purchase only […]

State budget support for airport at Bluegrass Station reignites local opposition

By: - February 14, 2024

FRANKFORT — Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear and House Republicans differed on plenty in their two-year state budget proposals but landed on one area of agreement: Supporting efforts to build a general aviation airport with a 7,800-foot runway and airpark at Bluegrass Station, a state-owned industrial park at Avon in Fayette County.  A local government attempt […]

Kentucky water utilities could opt out of putting fluoride in drinking water under advancing bill

By: - February 8, 2024

FRANKFORT — Kentucky water utilities would no longer be required to add or adjust fluoride in tap water supplies — a state requirement since the mid-20th century aimed at improving  Kentuckians’ dental health — under a bill approved by a legislative committee Thursday.  House Bill 141 is the latest effort by Rep. Mark Hart, R-Falmouth, […]

Toyota boosts investment in Georgetown EV plant to $1.3 billion

By: - February 6, 2024

Toyota announced an additional expansion to its manufacturing plant in Georgetown, bringing planned new investment in the Kentucky facility to $1.3 billion, as the Japanese automaker steps up production of electric SUVs for U.S. customers. The automaker announced last year it was putting $591 million into the Scott County plant’s conversion and retaining 9,000 employees […]