Fletcher Formalizes Legislature's Three Week Break

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Ernie Fletcher signed an executive order Wednesday formalizing his decision to have the General Assembly reconvene in special session later this month.

Fletcher had ordered the legislature into a special session last week to deal with issues including tax incentives for energy companies, domestic partner benefits for university employees and income tax breaks for military personnel.

Lawmakers disagreed on whether the call for a special session was necessary, leading the Democrat-controlled House to adjourn shortly after the session convened last Thursday without taking action. The state Senate, which is controlled by Republicans, continued to meet until Monday.

After further arguing along party lines, Fletcher called Monday night for a three week break during which lawmakers could "cool off" and said he would order lawmakers back to Frankfort on July 30.

Fletcher also told lawmakers that when they return, they should address withholding their pay.

Right now, because the legislature has not adjourned for good, lawmakers are receiving their daily pay which ranges between $180 to $225 per member. Legislators have indicated they won't accept the money, but there is disagreement over how they need to go about forfeiting their pay.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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