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Bluegrass Blueprint for Prosperity

Americans for Prosperity-Kentucky’s policy agenda for 2021 provides a bold outline of how we can improve the lives of all Kentuckians and transform the Commonwealth into a better place to live, work, and raise a family.

Vision For Economic Recovery

The economic recovery from COVID-19 can do more than just return the country to the pre-pandemic status quo. As strong as the economy was at the start of 2020, we can emerge even stronger in 2021, building an economy equipped for the future that fosters greater opportunity and upward mobility for Americans from all walks of life.

Doing this starts with a core belief in people—we believe in the importance of empowering every American to earn success, contribute to his or her community, and live a meaningful life.

We must curb the spread of the coronavirus and protect public health in order for the economy to recover—and we can do so without harming people’s livelihoods.

All Americans should have access to opportunities that foster upward economic mobility and in the wake of tens of thousands of business closures, it is essential that our economy makes it easier to start and grow principled, productive businesses.

Government spending will not lead the way to economic recovery. Recovery will be driven by bottom-up solutions that empower every individual.

Protect Kentucky’s Taxpayers and Promote Economic Opportunity

Fight against tax increases

Frankfort’s special interests are calling for higher taxes to fuel more spending. Kentuckians are taxed enough. Frankfort should live within its means and protect taxpayers’ wallets.

Fight Against Corporate Welfare And Cronyism

Government should pursue policies that create a level playing field where everyone is bound by the same set of rules. Instead, the game is rigged by powerful special interests, allowing government to pick winners and losers through subsidies, tax carveouts, regulatory barriers and protectionist policies.

Kentucky’s Road Fund is full of tax exemptions, special interest tax breaks and a rigged bidding system that costs the state hundreds of millions in infrastructure investment. Over $100 million in gas taxes is diverted to the General Fund instead of spent on maintenance and construction of roads and bridges. Instead of higher gas taxes, Kentucky should cut the corporate welfare and cronyism in the Road Fund.

Fight for Meaningful Occupational Licensure Reform

Government occupational licensing laws and regulations are harmful barriers that prevent people from realizing their potential to earn a fulfilling living and improve the lives of their families and communities.  The path forward is to end government’s role wherever possible, returning choice to consumers and occupational training to schools and the private sector where training and education can quickly evolve to meet the needs of society without the heavy hand of government. This can be done by removing and reducing occupational licensing requirements directly or by creating structural reforms that lead the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of governments to evaluate burdensome occupational requirements more critically and eliminate them over time.

Worker Freedom

AFP KY will continue to protect and preserve the gains the state has made in ensuring workers and employers are free to enter into mutually beneficial agreements. We will continue to protect right to work and fight for a Janus decision opt-in for Kentucky  so public employees can choose whether to join a union. For many government workers, a union fee is money that could be better used to save, spend, or invest in themselves, their family, or their community.

Expand Educational Freedom by Empowering Parents With Choices

Every child is unique and deserving of an education that enables them to develop the skills and knowledge to live a life of meaning and purpose. It’s time for the Kentucky General Assembly to modernize the state’s education system, away from a one-size-fits-all model and to a system that that enables students and families to access the education experience that best meets every students’ individual needs

Help Students Fulfill Their Potential

All children across the Commonwealth deserve an educational opportunity that best meets their unique needs—one that embraces the freedom of innovation and the dignity of the individual. We must allow educators the freedom to provide innovative solutions to educate our children. Educational empowerment for parents and their children is critical to ensuring all students are given the knowledge and tools to find their passion in life.

Expanding Educational Opportunities for Students, Educators

All families must have the freedom to select educational options that meet the unique needs of their children. Educational opportunity must be available to all students, regardless of their ZIP code or income level. Two avenues that we’d like to pursue in Kentucky to expand options for students, educators, and their families would include enacting scholarship tax credits and funding charter schools.

Enact Criminal Justice Reform

AFP-Kentucky supports policies that will make our streets safer and help Kentuckians get a much-needed second chance. We strive for an effective criminal justice system that protects people, respects human dignity, prioritizes rehabilitation and re-entry, provides second chances to those who’ve paid their debt to society, and ensures equal justice under the law.

Restoring Voting Rights for Those Who Have Paid Their Debts

Second chances help create safer streets and more harmonious communities. Restoring the eligibility to vote to people who have done their time and paid their debts in full will make our society safer, our system more just, and provide for real second chances for returning citizens.

Reforming the Bail System

Under our current bail policies, the rich and guilty often get a better deal than the poor and innocent. The decision to jail someone before they get their day in court should be based on an individual’s flight or safety risk, not their financial status. It’s time to reform our outdated bail laws and move to a fairer, evidence-based approach that protects Kentuckians’ constitutional right to due process.

Responsible Policing Reform

Policing in America just isn’t working well for many — least of all Black Americans, police officers, and communities where peaceful protests have given way to destructive riots. Groups on both sides have pitted communities against each other and forced them to choose between equal justice and public safety.

But that’s a false choice. Instead of drawing lines and pitting people against each other, let’s bridge divides and unite to make policing work for everyone. Here’s how we’re working to do it:

  • Focus policing on more serious crimes. Most arrests in America are for non-violent offenses, like marijuana possession. We can stop criminalizing these offenses so police officers can work to reduce and solve serious crimes that harm people and communities.
  • Stop creating bad policies for police to enforce. We can eliminate policies like unnecessary fines and fees and civil asset forfeiture and replace them with alternatives for good policing that keeps everyone safe.
  • Help the people who need help. We can increase access to community solutions that alleviate the root causes of criminal activities like poverty, mental illness, and addiction, instead of simply throwing people behind bars.

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