News of KFTC and our issues

Coal miners’ lives still matter

July 11, 2018

If you wonder why black lung disease is not just still killing coal miners but also making a roaring comeback, consider the criminal indictments announced in Owensboro on Wednesday.

A now bankrupt coal company and eight of its managers conspired to cheat on dust monitoring tests and lied about the results in violation of federal law, according to the charges.

Kentucky Lawmakers Limit Black Lung Claims Reviews Despite Epidemic

April 1, 2018

A measure signed into law in Kentucky this past week would prevent federally-certified radiologists from judging X-rays in state black lung compensation claims, leaving diagnoses of the disease mostly to physicians who typically work for coal companies.

Pension bill takes an extra six years and $5 billion to pay Kentucky’s pension debt

March 30, 2018

The controversial pension plan rushed through the Kentucky legislature Thursday night would do at least one thing Republican lawmakers vowed to stop this year: It would kick the can down the road.

Congress should make good on debts to coal country. Now.

March 21, 2018

Congress should renew a tax on coal companies that supports medical treatment for miners disabled by black lung and expires at the end of this year. A vicious resurgence of the incurable disease gives lawmakers little choice.

Anti-solar bill hurts Kentucky’s energy future. It’s also a case of dirty politics.

March 16, 2018

The anti-solar energy bill that was narrowly passed by the House and is awaiting action in the Senate illustrates two weaknesses in Kentucky’s civic character: We try to cling to the past, and we tolerate dirty politics.

House Bill 227 was written by electric utilities to protect their monopolies by discouraging Kentuckians from installing solar panels on their homes.

16 coal-county leaders implore McConnell to move RECLAIM Act

March 15, 2018

Congress has pending before it the opportunity to provide a $1 billion boost to the local economies struggling with the decline of the coal industry.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has the power to make this a reality for hundreds of Kentucky families looking for the means to make a decent living and stay in the Kentucky communities they call home.

That’s why we — and 14 other county judge-executives across the state — sent a letter to McConnell imploring him to see that the RECLAIM Act becomes law soon.

Eastern Kentucky can have a future; Mitch McConnell holds one of the keys.

March 13, 2018

I operate a small business based in Clay County that reclaims abandoned coal mines.

Not just Kentucky: This week, we saw the real agenda behind pension push.

February 15, 2018

Corporations have spent four decades taking traditional pensions away from most American workers. Now they and their allies want to do the same to school teachers and other public employees.

Bevin's Medicaid changes actually mean Kentucky will pay more to provide health care

February 14, 2018

Gov. Matt Bevin's complex plan to reshape the state Medicaid program actually will cost Kentucky more to provide health coverage to people affected by the Medicaid changes than if the state did nothing.

Against energy subsidies? Lawmakers complaining about solar should dig into this.

February 9, 2018

If legislators want to complain about solar subsidies, maybe they need to take a fresh look at coal subsidies. Commission an independent economist to add up all the costs and benefits to the state budget of coal, gas, oil, solar and other energy technologies and compare them. If we’re going to subsidize anything, maybe it should be the future and not the past.

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