Eastern Kentucky

Amy created a roadmap, Mission: Rebuilding Kentucky, to address the immense economic pain caused by COVID-19. This plan will help rebuild Kentucky stronger than ever, and improve the lives of Kentuckians now and into the future.

As Kentucky’s Senator, Amy would take action to help families and small businesses get through this crisis, ensure every Kentuckian has access to affordable health care, provide good-paying jobs, and mitigate intergenerational poverty. In Eastern Kentucky, the plan would help people get secure and affordable health insurance coverage, ensure access to clean water, spur job growth and reduce poverty.

Solving the Water Crisis

Water samples from Martin County breached quality standards outlined in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Safe Water Drinking Act 50 times between 2008 and 2019. No one should go without safe and clean drinking water in the wealthiest nation on earth, especially amid a global health crisis.

Mitch’s Failure

Despite Kentucky’s unacceptable infrastructure issues and need for immediate help, McConnell recently told states and municipalities cash-strapped because of the pandemic to simply go bankrupt. He is unwilling to provide federal aid right now to fund improvements to water quality and crumbling infrastructure.

Amy’s Vision

Amy will protect well-paying jobs and ensure citizens have access to basic necessities like clean water and safe roads with financial support for state and local governments. Immediate monetary aid will ensure public employees, such as teachers, firefighters and police officers, will not be at risk of losing their jobs and pensions because of the current economic crisis, and that basic services are available to all Kentuckians.

Impact


With just roughly $10 million of federal support, Martin County can repairs its water infrastructure and ensure its citizens have what they need to be healthy during and after this crisis.

Providing Secure, Affordable Health Care

In Eastern Kentucky, 18% of adults ages 18 to 64 said they were concerned they may lose their health insurance in the next year.

Mitch’s Failure

Mitch has tried 19 times to weaken or overturn the Affordable Care Act. He is supporting a lawsuit that would strip almost 400,000 Kentuckians of their health insurance, and, right now, during this pandemic, he is holding up a bill that would ensure companies cannot offer plans that refuse people coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

Amy’s Vision

Amy will fight for a subsidized public option for the duration of the pandemic that anyone who loses their job or falls below 200% of the poverty line would be enrolled in. There would be no deductibles for anyone. Even after this crisis passes, Amy will ensure a public option is available so that all Americans can have the opportunity to buy a publicly run insurance plan, which would also increase competition and help to lower premiums.

Impact

Amy’s public option could bring down the rate of uninsured people in Eastern Kentucky immediately, ensure that families without work can afford health care and help provide medical attention to the 1 in 4 adults in Eastern Kentucky who reported they were delaying needed care because of the cost.

Providing Good-Paying Jobs

A majority, 26 of the 31 counties in Eastern Kentucky, are considered “distressed” by the Appalachian Regional Commission, meaning they are struggling with high unemployment rates, low income levels and high poverty rates.

Mitch’s Failure

For decades, Kentucky’s coal industry powered our country, but now when these coal communities need our country’s help to get back on their feet following the hit to the industry, Mitch has left them out to dry. Mitch proposed an extremely weak version of a bill to help with economic development in the region and never even brought it to the Senate floor for a vote.

Amy’s Vision

Amy has an ambitious plan to boost the economy of Eastern Kentucky quickly. It starts with passing the RECLAIM Act, which would provide the commonwealth with $100 million to clean up abandoned coal mines, and in the process bring jobs, better health and opportunities back to these rich communities to which we all owe a massive debt. Amy also plans to create a 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps to protect the region’s resources, build its infrastructure and offer well-paying jobs to do so.

Impact

It’s possible, and entirely within Kentuckians’ power and potential, to once again become the powerhouse that fuels the country. Investment in the communities of Eastern Kentucky will allow the brainpower, workforce and factories in the region to once again be put to use in manufacturing and energy creation here at home, instead of sending these jobs overseas like Mitch has been doing for decades.

Making College Affordable and Accessible

Despite having higher rates of college readiness and high school graduation, Eastern Kentucky has higher poverty rates than the rest of the state.

Mitch’s Failure

Mitch’s plan would slash $14 million in funds for Kentucky students relying on the federal work study program and slash $6 billion in for students nationwide relying on Pell Grants. Mitchalso wants to put the big banks back in charge of student loans, saying the government should “get out of the student loan business” and voted three times to end federal student loans.

Amy’s Vision

Amy will work to create a national service plan that makes college affordable for every American. In exchange for each year of service through teaching, tutoring, being a nurse and more, Eastern Kentucky students could have a year of college tuition paid for.

Impact

An increased number of college degrees in the region could not only have positive impacts on an individual’s earning capacity but also on the region’s economy. Someone with a college degree will contribute $278,000 more to his or her local economy than the average high school graduate over the course of his or her lifetime.

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Western Kentucky

PAID FOR BY AMY MCGRATH FOR SENATE