McKenna Horsley

McKenna Horsley

McKenna Horsley covers state politics for the Kentucky Lantern. She previously worked for newspapers in Huntington, West Virginia, and Frankfort, Kentucky. She is from northeastern Kentucky.

Givens files bill for independent review of Department of Juvenile Justice

By: - February 16, 2023

FRANKFORT — Another recommendation from the juvenile justice legislative work group has been put into proposed legislation.  Sen. David Givens, R-Greensburg, filed Senate Bill 158 Thursday. The measure would direct the Office of the Auditor of Public Accounts to contract a full performance review with a third party on the Department of Juvenile Justice’s pre-adjudication […]

Craft won’t be part of March 7 GOP debate in Louisville, cites travel conflict

By: - February 16, 2023

LOUISVILLE — Voters tuning in to the first Republican gubernatorial debate on March 7 will not get to hear from candidate Kelly Craft.  Craft, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said Thursday that she is not participating in the Louisville GOP Gubernatorial Debate on March 7 because of conflicts with her campaign travel […]

Kentucky Senate: Reopen Capital Avenue

By: - February 16, 2023

FRANKFORT — The Kentucky Senate passed a measure to reopen a portion of Capital Avenue Wednesday, Senate Bill 11. The bill’s sponsor called it a symbol of open government.  Sen. John Schickel, R-Union, said in a floor speech that the move was in response to Gov. Andy Beshear closing a portion of the avenue between […]

Kentucky small farm wineries seek to self-distribute more product

By: - February 16, 2023

FRANKFORT — Kentucky’s small farm wineries are asking lawmakers to let them sell up to 30,000 gallons of wine annually to licensed retailers, but the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of Kentucky says that’s too much. Charles George, executive director of the wholesalers group, told a legislative committee that the wholesalers would support direct sales to […]

Reps. Keturah Herron and Lisa Willner, both Louisville Democrats. Photo by Sarah Ladd for the Kentucky Lantern.

Lawmakers want to bring Louisville juveniles home

By: and - February 15, 2023

FRANKFORT — While there’s bipartisan support for returning Louisville kids in the juvenile justice system to Jefferson County, at least two Louisville Democratic lawmakers said they would invest in preventive services rather than detention. The House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday advanced House Bill 3, which provides $8.9 million to renovate and reopen a 40-bed Jefferson […]

Kentucky juvenile justice reforms have multi-million dollar price tags, state budget director says

By: - February 14, 2023

FRANKFORT — State Budget Director and Executive Cabinet Secretary John Hicks told lawmakers Tuesday that the price tags to support executive branch reforms in the Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice are $20 million in the next fiscal year’s operating budget and $26 million in the current capital budget.  Amid discussions about Kentucky’s juvenile justice system, […]

Students could use KEES to pay for certificate programs under bill clearing House Education Committee

By: - February 14, 2023

FRANKFORT — Four bills that clarify and expand existing programs in Kentucky schools moved forward in the legislative process.  The bills, which are all sponsored by Republicans, received favorable recommendations from the House Education Committee Tuesday. Topics they address are dual credit courses, higher education scholarships, qualifications for classified school employees and insured student loans.  […]

Kentucky senators in agreement on passing TikTok ban bill

By: - February 10, 2023

FRANKFORT — Kentucky senators were not divided on a proposal to put recent bans on a social media platform into state law.  On Friday, the Senate voted 33-0 on Senate Bill 20, a piece of legislation that would prohibit TikTok, a social media platform where users can create minutes-long videos, from state government devices or […]

Sen. Berg says ‘parental rights’ bill is about scoring political points

By: - February 9, 2023

This story discusses suicide. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please call or text the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988. FRANKFORT — The Senate Education Committee voted 11-1 Thursday to advance a bill sponsored by Sen. Max Wise, Republican candidate for governor Kelly Craft’s running mate, over the objections of Sen. […]

Max Wise’s bill to curb ‘woke agenda’ sparks plea for compassion from Senate colleague

By: - February 8, 2023

This story discusses suicide. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please call or text the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988. FRANKFORT —  Republican Kelly Craft’s running mate in the Kentucky governor’s race took her anti-woke crusade to the Senate floor Wednesday, drawing a plea from a colleague to “avoid politicizing issues […]

Senate committee forwards bill to codify TikTok ban on Kentucky government devices 

By: - February 8, 2023

FRANKFORT — A Kentucky Senate committee on Wednesday endorsed putting into state law a ban on TikTok on state government devices or networks. TikTok, a social media platform where content creators can make minutes-long videos about a variety of topics, is commonly used by teenagers and young adults.  The Senate State and Local Government Committee […]

Teachers are leaving the profession for a mix of reasons, say lawmakers and education officials

By: - February 7, 2023

FRANKFORT — Kentucky’s teacher turnover rate is above the national average and growing yearly, Education Commissioner Jason Glass told lawmakers Tuesday. On their first day back in session after a recess, the House Education Committee tackled the teacher shortage. Although no bills have been introduced, committee chair James Tipton said he’s working on a legislative […]