Lawmaker to update students

Courtesy of Legislative Research Commission Public Affairs State Rep. Kenny Imes, a Republican from Murray, addresses a legislative committee during the 2015 General Assembly session.
Courtesy of Legislative Research Commission Public Affairs State Rep. Kenny Imes, a Republican from Murray, addresses a legislative committee during the 2015 General Assembly session.

Courtesy of Legislative Research Commission Public Affairs
State Rep. Kenny Imes, a Republican from Murray, addresses a legislative committee during the 2015 General Assembly session.

Murray State’s College Republicans are bringing state Rep. Kenny Imes to campus April 2 to explain the issues Kentucky’s state legislature has been wrestling with in Frankfort.

The 2015 General Assembly adjourned Wednesday to conclude this year’s 30-day session.

Members of any political party are encouraged to attend Imes’ talk.

Imes, a Murray native, is a Republican who represents the 5th state House district that covers Calloway and part of Trigg counties.

Imes first served in the state House as a Democrat from 1972 to 1979. Then he won the seat as a Republican in 2012 and is running in the May 2015 Republican primary for the nomination for Kentucky state Treasurer.

Those who attend the April 2 meeting will learn a “great deal about issues legislature dealt with this last term,” said James Humphreys, associate professor of history.

Some of the issues the legislature debated included whether to automatically allow felons to get back their rights to vote after serving their time, whether local communities could vote to increase their sales tax and several agricultural issues. 

This week, the General Assembly passed a measure to increase penalties for dealing heroin and improve treatment for addicts. 

“The main reason for the discussion is not to campaign, but to talk about the issues that have been brought to state legislature and how they affect college students and the lives of Kentuckians,” said Desiree Isaac, senior from Topmost, Ky.

The discussion is intended to get college students and members of the community involved in and informed about issues affecting Kentucky legislature.

Isaac said she believes college students are more interested in national politics than state government.

Humphreys offered other reasons to encourage students to attend.

“Politics can be a powerful agent of change in society,” Humphreys said.

He said he is encouraging students to attend the event because he believes it allows individuals to affect change in society.

He also said that learning about current issues and policies helps students’ education.

One issue that’s not likely to fall down party lines, however, is support of the Racer basketball team. Imes is a big fan, Isaac said.

“He loves Murray State basketball and comes to all of the games,” Isaac said.

The discussion will be 7 p.m. April 2 in Faculty Hall, room 208.

Story by Abby Siegel, Contributing writer