Support grassroots voices: With KFTC, I became a lobbyist!

Posted by: By Laura Harper on April 14, 2016

 My name is Laura, and this year I became a lobbyist.

But I’m not on the payroll of a big corporation. I’m a homegrown, grassroots lobbyist. I work for you, and every Kentuckian who believes that we deserve a bright future.

I joined Kentuckians For The Commonwealth to work for change on renters’ rights and other issues that matter to me. And this year I participated in the Kentucky General Assembly for the first time. With KFTC, I got to sit down with legislators and talk about policy – including renters’ rights – in a way I didn’t know was possible.

KFTC celebrates its 35th anniversary this year. This was my first time to lobby, but KFTC members have been working together in Frankfort and across the state for more than three decades. Our investment in KFTC makes it possible.

Here’s how you can support grassroots voices this year and help KFTC start our next 35 years strong. Invest in KFTC during our spring campaign!

Become a Sustaining Giver. Build New Power with a recurring gift. Small monthly donations add up to a deeper investment and a bigger impact. 

Renew your membership today. You can also make a one-time gift of any size to renew your membership and support this important work for another year. 

Join KFTC. As our numbers grow, so does our power.

Thank you for investing in the Kentucky we know is possible!

Letcher Countians speak out against proposed federal prison

Posted by: Sara Estep on April 8, 2016

Last year, Congress approved funding for a new maximum security federal prison in Letcher County – the only new federal prison in the nation. The estimated preliminary cost of construction is $460 -$510 million. Rep. Hal Rogers has touted the prison as the main economic engine in eastern Kentucky. 

In Letcher County, we have so much potential, and with the right investments could create local economic engines that serve our land and our people. The Letcher County KFTC Chapter does not believe that this prison offers the economic development that Letcher County deserves.

Local residents are joining together to voice concerns about the prison. Chapter members have formed a work team to participate and to highlight alternative economic drivers that would support a just transition for our region.

On April 1, the U.S. Bureau of Prisons (BOP) announced that it was forced to re-open a public comment period for the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on the prison in Letcher County after facing multiple shortcomings, including violations of public notice requirements, in its "Final EIS" released last July. A 30-day window is now open on a Revised Final EIS.

Mitch Whitaker, a local resident, recently had an op-ed published in the Lexington Herald-Leader about his concerns. Check it out, below, and keep on the lookout for more.

Big Sandy chapter hosts seventh annual Growing Appalachia conference

Posted by: Jessie Skaggs on April 7, 2016


On Saturday March 5, folks from around eastern Kentucky came out to the Jenny Wiley Convention Center near Prestonsburg for the seventh annual Growing Appalachia conference, which is a day of workshops about small-scale farming, energy efficiency and renewables.

Jefferson County Chapter hosts 3rd Annual We Are Kentuckians event

Posted by: Staff on March 29, 2016

This March the Jefferson County Chapter of KFTC hosted the 3rd Annual We Are Kentuckians: Celebrating Our Common Heritage, a celebration of African American women’s heritage th

Look what KFTC members did in 2015

Posted by: KFTC Staff on March 29, 2016

KFTC members did some amazing work in 2015.

We took our climate justice work to the world stage at the COP21 climate talks in Paris, helped pass a minimum wage increase in Lexington, and moved the needle on voting rights. And in communities across Kentucky, we raised our voices for renters’ rights, environmental protection, racial justice and more.

We’re pleased to share with you the 2015 KFTC Annual Report.

You’ll see lots of faces and some important wins. And you’ll see the New Power we’re building together to achieve the Kentucky we envision.

Hope you enjoy it! Thanks for your part in making 2015 great.

Donate your "change" to KFTC. It's easy!

Posted by: KFTC Staff on March 18, 2016

KFTC is part of a new fundraising opportunity called MyChange.

MyChange was started by four former organizers who wanted to level the playing field for progressive causes that were consistently being out-raised and out-spent by large political organizations. Here’s an article with more information about how MyChange got started.

"We started MyChange to transform how progressive work gets funded in America,” said Eli Il Yong Lee, one of the co-founders. “With large corporate interests trying to hijack our democracy, MyChange is our way of fighting back. MyChange is only for progressive organizations and candidates. Like KFTC has done for decades, we want to bring the power of democracy back to the people."

The idea is simple. Folks who sign up for MyChange are able to “round up” their credit card purchases to the nearest dollar, and the “change” goes to their favorite progressive organizations. They can also set a cap on how much they’ll donate in a month.

MyChange was launched in January 2016, and KFTC is trying it out. If you’d like to sign up and start giving more to KFTC any time you use your credit card, click here. And let us know what you think by emailing the Development Team at amy@kftc.org or ebeth@kftc.org.

Jefferson County hosts Tax Justice Meet and Greet with legislators

Posted by: KFTF Staff on March 10, 2016

There hasn’t been a week that’s gone by this legislative session without our deeply underfunded state budget making the news.

Community conversations will help shape Empower Ky. Plan

Posted by: KFTC staff on March 1, 2016

Kentuckians will have the opportunity this spring to help shape a new Empower Kentucky Plan to map out an energy future for Kentucky that grows jobs, benefits health and addresses racial and economic inequality while doing our part to reduce the risks of climate change.

The Empower Kentucky Plan will be informed by diverse public input, including ideas generated at a series of “A Seat at the Table” community conversations hosted by Kentuckians For The Commonwealth in April and May.

Upcoming public meetings: Berea wholesale electric power decision

Posted by: Steve Wilkins on February 20, 2016

Berea Municipal Utilities (BMU) does not generate its own electricity. It buys its wholesale electric power from Kentucky Utilities (KU). KU provided Berea and ten other cities with new terms for contract renewals that were considered too restrictive. Consultants who have negotiated with KU on behalf of this coalition of cities for more than 30 years advised that the cities should evaluate options besides continuing with KU. This led to an expansion of this long-term city collaboration to create a new agency so that this collective could formally negotiate power contracts for the groups and spread administrative costs among the group. This agency is the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency (KyMEA). It was assumed that Berea would sign on to participate, but various issues prompted Berea’s city council to explore other options in addition to either continuing with KU, going with KyMEA, or going with some other provider. The city council is now in the process of considering options before it makes a choice. 

Have you renewed your KFTC membership?

Posted by: KFTC Staff on February 16, 2016


Building our power so we can use our power is one way we often describe KFTC’s work. We used our power to win in 2015 on minimum wage, voting rights and litigation against coal companies. Those wins were possible because we built our power through grassroots organizing, leadership development, and membership.

Membership takes many forms: attending chapter meetings, lobbying during the General Assembly, registering voters, learning about issues, developing leadership skills, bringing new people into the work, and supporting KFTC financially.


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