Kentucky LRC 'Not the Agency it Was Two Years Ago'

Sep 18, 2017

Credit J. Tyler Franklin, WFPL

The research and support staff arm of the Kentucky General Assembly is bouncing back from a difficult era. 

The National Conference of State Legislatures has released a satisfaction survey among employees at the Legislative Research Commission in Frankfort.  The agency improved in nearly every category since a 2014 audit when at the height of a sexual harassment investigation involving a state lawmaker and female LRC staffers.

The LRC director at the time, Bobby Sherman, resigned following criticism over how he handled the allegations and shredded some documents that could have been important to the investigation.  He was replaced in 2015 with David Byerman who told WKU Public Radio that morale is rebounding.

"Wounds take some time to heal and I think the LRC is a different agency that it was two years ago," Byerman stated.

According to the survey, Byerman says the area that showed the most improvement was confidence in the LRC’s hiring practices.

"We are advertising every single position," explained Byerman.  "One concern that was raised in the previous audit by NCSL was that some jobs were not widely advertised or were hand-picked for specific people."

LRC staff also indicated that the LRC is better at providing feedback to employees, addressing problems, and acknowledging employee excellence.  The survey showed slight dips in the agency’s technology services, including the quality and accessibility of online bill status information.

The full report from the National Conference of State Legislatures can be found here.