A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Gov. Beshear signs more bills into law, including Rep. Moser’s biomarker testing insurance coverage

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

Gov. Andy Beshear signed a number of bills into law during his weekly Capitol press conference on Thursday, hinted at one he is inclined to veto during the next several days, and announced an emergency regulation to ban an unregulated drug.

The bills he signed included:

• House Bill 180 requires health insurance coverage of biomarker testing for cancer treatment, which can help determine the proper medication for treatment.  “I know that we have all been touched by cancer here in Kentucky,” said Rep. Kim Moser, R-Taylor Mill, the bill’s sponsor.  “We have the unfortunate ranking as number one for lung cancer in the nation, and we seek to change that.”

• HB 146 would restore an additional six weeks of unemployment benefits, after lawmakers last year cut eligibility from 26 to 12 weeks.

• Senate Bill 30 requires a business that makes an automatic renewal offer to be more upfront on what a subscription includes, and provides straightforward ways a customer can stop an automatic subscription.

• SB 281 requires state government to replace at least 50% of fleet vehicles with those that are hybrid, electric, or use other alternative fuels by 2026.

• HB 544 provides for the regulation of Delta-8 Tetrahydrocannabinol and other hemp-derived products, limiting their purchase to those 21 or older.

• House Joint Resolution 76, which authorizes spending $40 million for state resort park campground upgrades, $20 million for utility upgrades, and $6 million for high speed internet and wireless upgrades.

• Senate Joint Resolution 58, designating the Brigadier General Charles Young Memorial Historical Corridor, from Camp Nelson in Jessamine County to Mays Lick in Mason County.

When asked about whether he will sign SB 150, which among other things bans puberty blockers, gender-affirming surgery, and cross-sex hormones for those under 18, Beshear said he has not yet made a decision.

However, he did comment on the bill. “I believe it tears away the freedom of parents to make important and difficult medical decisions for their kids. Instead, it has big government make those decisions for everyone, even if the parents disagree. The other thing I believe is, sadly, it is going to cause an increase in teen suicide here in Kentucky.”

Beshear added, “I can’t ever imagine ever treating a co-worker like this General Assembly has treated Sen. Karen Berg. She lost her son for this very reason, by suicide, right before this session. They pushed through this bill with her sobbing right there. It shows a total lack of compassion, and it’s really wrong.”

The governor also announced he has signed an emergency regulation classifying all products containing tianeptine, an unregulated drug known as “gas station heroin,” that produces opioid-like effects, as a Schedule I controlled substance.

Tianeptine, which is available online and in convenience stores and gas stations, has no known medical use. It has been linked to serious harm, overdoses and death according to the FDA.

He will release more details on Friday during a press conference on the subject.

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