If you look at a single act by a legislator you can get pissed off. However, if you take a wide look at their total activities you can get really outraged.
I started by looking at the amendments attached to House Bill 70.
House Bill 70 would allow the voters of this state to decide if convicted felons that have served their time the right to vote.
AN ACT proposing an amendment to Section 145 of the Constitution of Kentucky relating to persons entitled to vote.
Propose to amend Section 145 of the Constitution of Kentucky to exclude a convicted felon from the right to vote until expiration of probation or final discharge from parole or maximum expiration of sentence; submit to the voters for ratification or rejection.
However James Comer, who obviously pays no attention to groups like the League of Women Voters, wants to kill the bill with a poison pill amendment.
HFA (6, J. Comer Jr) - Retain original provisions and amend to require that before any felon may have voting rights restored the felon must reimburse the state for 25 percent of the cost of the felon's detention.
He can call this a reimbursement, but it’s really a poll tax or additional fine for having been in prison.
Kentucky's felon prison population in 2007 was 22,402. The taxpayers of Kentucky spent $454 million on corrections in 2007. To payback according to Comer’s amendment each prisoner will need to send the state $422.21 for every month served
So maybe Comer is just trying to ease the budget crisis by generating $113 million per year from former convicts. That would help balance the tax breaks he wants to pass out.
HB 532/FN (BR 966) - F. Nesler, H. Collins, E. Ballard, L. Belcher, S. Brinkman, J. Comer Jr, W. Coursey, R. Damron, M. Denham, J. Gooch Jr, D. Horlander, C. Miller, M. Rader, S. Rudy, J. Stacy, G. Stumbo, T. Thompson, T. Turner, J. Vincent, R. Wilkey, B. Yonts
AN ACT relating to tax credits for railroad infrastructure improvements.
Create new sections of KRS Chapter 141 to establish railroad infrastructure maintenance and improvement tax credit for Class II and III railroads; set credit at 50 percent of qualified expenditures, with a credit cap of $4,500 per mile of track, and allow credit to be assigned to a shipper using the rails who pays for the improvements; establish a railroad grade crossing improvement tax credit to improve existing rail crossings; set credit at 25 percent of expenditures, with a credit cap of $1,000,000 statewide each year; establish system of prorating credits among railroad companies if more than $1,000,000 of credits are sought; establish a railroad energy expansion tax credit for rail expansion or upgrade of rail facilities to transport fossil or biomass resources; set credit at 25 percent of expenditures, with a credit cap of $1,000,000 statewide each year; establish system of prorating credits among railroad companies if more than $1,000,000 of credits are sought; specify that an expenditure that qualifies for more than one of the tax credits established by the Act may only be claimed as a credit under one section; amend KRS 141.0205 to place the credits established under the Act in the tax credit priority list; provide that the provisions of the Act apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2008.
In case you are wondering what a Class II and III railroad is, here is an example. The Paducah and Louisville Railroad is a Class II railroad in Kentucky. The President and CEO of the Paducah and Louisville railroad is A.V (Tony) Reck. Reck and his wife, according to the Registry of Election Finance, has given over $14,000.00 to political candidates, mostly Republican candidates like Ernie Fletcher and Stan Lee. Of course I’m sure that has nothing to do with this little tax break.
HB 333/FN (BR 1123) - D. Pasley, H. Moberly Jr, J. Comer Jr, C. Hoffman, T. McKee, F. Nesler, D. Osborne, S. Overly, T. Turner, R. Webb, B. Yonts
AN ACT relating to veterinarians and making an appropriation therefor.
Create a new section of KRS Chapter 321 to establish a student loan forgiveness program for Kentucky residents who agree to serve as a veterinarian in large or mixed animal practice in an underserved area in Kentucky; establish loan forgiveness caps; establish eligibility requirements for loan forgiveness; create a Veterinary Student Loan Forgiveness Committee and establish duties of the committee; APPROPRIATION.
HB 341/FN/LM (BR 1181) - J. Bell, J. Comer Jr
AN ACT relating to taxes of cities and counties. Amend KRS 81A.450 to clarify that a city annexing an industrial park shall assume all debt associated with the development of the park, and shall be required to share future occupational tax revenues with the localities that developed the park
HB 418/FN (BR 1637) - B. Farmer, J. Hoover, S. Brinkman, D. Butler, J. Comer Jr, T. Couch, R. Crimm, B. DeWeese, M. Dossett, T. Edmonds, C. Embry Jr, J. Fischer, D. Ford, D. Graham, K. Hall, A. Koenig, S. Lee, R. Mobley, B. Montell, T. Moore, D. Osborne, M. Rader, T. Riner, S. Santoro, C. Siler, K. Upchurch, J. Vincent, A. Webb-Edgington, A. Wuchner
AN ACT relating to individual income tax. Amend KRS 141.010 to exempt any portion of a federal tax rebate included in federal adjusted gross income; apply to taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2008.
Of course Comer doesn’t just believe in limiting the voting rights of former felons. We have this poison pill amendment to House Bill 138 that would permit early voting.
HFA (3, J. Comer Jr) - Amend KRS 117.086 to allow a county board of elections to require that one or more precinct election officers be present when in-person absentee voting is being conducted.
Comer, in addition to bashing released felons and passing out tax breaks, likes to join in with Stan Lee and beat up on Hispanics
HB 95/LM/CI (BR 283) - R. Nelson, J. Comer Jr, R. Damron, S. Lee
AN ACT relating to unauthorized aliens. Create a new section of KRS Chapter 15 to allow local law enforcement agencies to enter into agreements with the federal government to enforce immigration law; create a new section of KRS Chapter 16 to require the State Police to enter into an agreement with the federal government to enforce immigration law and to form a Kentucky State Police Illegal Alien Task Force; Create several new sections of KRS Chapter 337 to prohibit employers from employee illegal aliens, to create a graduated loss of business license or charter scheme for those found to have done so after January 1, 2009, and to require utilization of a federal work authorization verification system; amend KRS 514.160 to include with the offense of identity theft the theft of identity by an unauthorized alien for the purpose of obtaining employment; create a noncodified section to create a Employer Sanctions Task Force to study the system of employer sanction relative to the employment of unauthorized aliens to operate during the 2008 legislative interim; create a noncodified section to name the act, "The Kentucky Legal Workers Act."
HB 304/FN/LM (BR 1097) - R. Damron, R. Nelson, K. Bratcher, J. Comer Jr, B. Farmer, D. Ford, S. Lee, R. Mobley, L. Napier, D. Osborne
AN ACT relating to homeland security. Repeal, reenact, and amend KRS 514.160 relating to identity theft to increase the number of pieces of identifying information, include use of false identification to deprive a person of money, obtain employment, hide one's true identity, cause another person to suffer economic loss, defraud another person, or attempt, solicit, or conspire to commit identity theft; create a new section of KRS Chapter 441 to require pretrial release officers to obtain place of birth, citizenship, and related information from prisoners in jail and report the information to the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security and Administrative Office of the Courts; create a new section of KRS Chapter 39G to expand the duties of the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security with regard to immigration, customs, and other homeland security matters; create a new section of KRS 15.380 to 15.404 to permit local and state law enforcement agencies to enter into agreements with the federal government for local enforcement of immigration and customs laws; create new sections of KRS Chapter 337 relating to employment to create definitions for an employee verification program; specify that the employee verification program applies only to businesses that contract or subcontract with government agencies and to government agencies; specify that an employer subject to the act shall verify citizenship, Social Security number, and other required information through the federal E-Verify program within the required time following employment to avoid hiring undocumented aliens; specify that an employer is not required to take any action that the employer believes would violate federal or state law; require an employer to utilize the federal Employment Eligibility Verification program beginning January 1, 2009; require the Department of Revenue to notify employers of the requirements of the employee verification law; create a new section of KRS Chapter 65 to require all local governments and local agencies to comply with the law and permit sharing of citizenship and immigration information as required by law and to prohibit local ordinances or other actions to violate the law; amend KRS 514.170 to conform.
Of course he also feels a need to join Jim Gooch and make it harder for public assistance clients.
HB 190 (BR 318) - M. Henley, L. Napier, K. Bratcher, J. Comer Jr, J. Gooch Jr, B. Montell
AN ACT relating to public assistance. Amend KRS 205.200 to create a substance abuse screening program for recipients of public assistance.
Then there is his need for micro-management of teachers and attempting to do an end run around school prayer. I wonder if he supports a moment of silence for Allah.
HB 363 (BR 1416) - R. Nelson, C. Embry Jr, L. Belcher, T. Burch, D. Butler, M. Cherry, H. Collins, J. Comer Jr, T. Couch, T. Edmonds, R. Henderson, M. Henley, D. Keene, C. Miller, R. Mobley, F. Nesler, C. Siler, D. Sims, A. Smith, J. Stewart III
AN ACT relating to work hours for teachers. Amend KRS 158.070 to specify the number of hours a teacher must work per day, unless changed by the school-based decision-making council; amend KRS 158.649 to conform.
HB 460 (BR 27) - R. Adams, K. Hall, J. Comer Jr, R. Damron, T. Edmonds, C. Embry Jr, J. Higdon, M. Rader, J. Stewart III, A. Wuchner
AN ACT relating to schools. Amend KRS 158.175 to require a moment of silence or reflection not to exceed two minutes at the commencement of each school day.
But never fear he has a solution to higher education problems, bring a gun to school.
HB 114/LM/CI (BR 314) - R. Damron, R. Adams, J. Arnold Jr, E. Ballard, S. Baugh, L. Belcher, J. Bell, K. Bratcher, D. Butler, M. Cherry, H. Collins, L. Combs, J. Comer Jr, T. Couch, W. Coursey, J. DeCesare, M. Dedman Jr, M. Dossett, T. Edmonds, C. Embry Jr, B. Farmer, T. Firkins, J. Fischer, D. Floyd, D. Ford, J. Gooch Jr, J. Greer, K. Hall, M. Harmon, R. Henderson, M. Henley, J. Higdon, D. Horlander, D. Keene, T. Kerr, A. Koenig, S. Lee, Ji. Lee, R. Mobley, B. Montell, L. Napier, R. Nelson, F. Nesler, D. Osborne, T. Pullin, M. Rader, R. Rand, S. Rudy, S. Santoro, C. Siler, D. Sims, A. Smith, B. Smith, J. Stacy, J. Stewart III, G. Stumbo, T. Thompson, J. Tilley, T. Turner, J. Vincent, R. Webb, A. Webb-Edgington, R. Weston, A. Wuchner
AN ACT relating to deadly weapons. Amend KRS 237.115, relating to government control of carrying of concealed deadly weapons, to require universities, colleges, and postsecondary institutions to comply with the provisions of KRS 237.106 and 237.110(17)(b) to ensure that persons may keep firearms in vehicles on university property if they do not remove the firearm from the vehicle; amend KRS 237.110 to conform.
Like I said earlier you have to take a look at the complete body of work to get a feel for a legislator.