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Staying in touch with the General Assembly

FRANKFORT – Several hours after Gov. Andy Beshear said access to the State Capitol Campus will be temporarily limited to essential staff, the Legislative Research Commission (LRC) announced that access to the Capitol Annex building will also be curbed in light of COVID-19 concerns.

Legislators and essential staff will continue working in the Annex building. People scheduled to testify before legislative committees can also enter the building. Other visitors will temporarily not be allowed in the Annex at a time when health officials discourage large crowds from gathering to help contain and mitigate the possible spread of the COVID-19.

Kentuckians have numerous ways to stay connected to the work of the General Assembly even if they can’t come to the Capitol Campus:

• Kentucky Educational Television (KET) covers all Senate and House proceedings, and many legislative committee meetings. The proceedings are livestreamed on KET’s Legislative Coverage web page at: https://www.ket.org/legislature/. LRC is planning to provide online streaming of legislative standing committee meetings that aren’t covered by KET. (More details to come.)

• The legislature’s daily schedule is available here: https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/LegislativeCalendar. Meeting information is also available on a recorded message by calling 1-800-633-9650.

• To leave feedback on an issue with lawmakers, call the General Assembly’s Message Line at 1-800-372-7181. A Spanish-language line is available by calling 1-866-840-6574. Kentuckians with hearing loss can use Kentucky Relay by dialing 7-1-1.

• To directly reach a lawmaker’s office, call 502-564-8100. An operator will transfer the call to the office of the lawmaker you want to reach.

• Web surfers also can see for themselves the issues before lawmakers by browsing through bill summaries, amendments, and resolutions in the online Legislative Record: https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/record/20rs/record.html. The online Record is updated daily to indicate each bill’s status in the legislative process and to show rolls calls of votes in legislative chambers

• In addition to general information about the General Assembly, the Kentucky General Assembly website provides information on each of Kentucky’s senators and representatives, including their legislative committee assignments, sponsored legislation, contact information, and Twitter handles: https://legislature.ky.gov/Pages/index.aspx

• Information on the status of a specific bill under consideration can be obtained by calling the Bill Status Line, 1-866-840-2835.

• Citizens can write to any legislator by sending a letter with the lawmaker’s name on it to: Legislative Offices, 701 Capitol Ave., Frankfort, KY 40601.

The COVID-19 pandemic is a developing story and will continue to be posted and updated as a way to keep the public informed. For more information on the virus in Kentucky, visit www.kycovid19.ky.gov.