The General Assembly wrapped up in April, but most of their work won't take effect until tomorrow
Laws placing stricter rules on public benefits, creating a funding mechanism for charter schools, and requiring a resource officer on every campus are among the new pieces of legislation going into effect Thursday.
While laws with “emergency clauses” attached take effect immediately and draw lots of media attention, most new Kentucky laws officially hit the books 90 days after the close of business in Frankfort – and that deadline is fast approaching.
One new law going into effect Thursday deals with school safety.
As the nation gets more insight into how the mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas unfolded, districts in Kentucky are going to have a new mandate: an armed school resource officer, or SRO, on every campus by August.
Kentucky Education Commissioner Jason Glass told KET that, as other school shootings have shown, that precaution alone isn’t a panacea. Plus it may not even be affordable for all districts, as the General Assembly has not yet secured guaranteed funding.
"They failed to put the funding with that to make it actually happen, or the supports that are necessary to train police officers to be SROs," Glass said. "You can't just take any cop and put them in a building and expect that to be successful. It's a different mentality and mindset."
Districts that are struggling to meet funding or staffing requirements would work with the state school security marshal to hire officers "on a per campus basis until each school has an SRO assigned to it," according to WYMT.
Other bills poised to become law this week include measures instituting new requirements for public benefits, launching a pair of pilot charter school projects, increasing penalties for fentanyl trafficking, setting new rules for the teaching of history in public schools, and banning transgender girls from middle school through college from participating in girls and women’s sports.
Read more on the final days of the 2022 General Assembly.