Big Sandy | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

Chapter: Big Sandy

If you want to find new ways to strengthen the economy, hold elected officials accountable, and be a part of a great community of folks, then we invite you to join the Big Sandy Chapter of KFTC. The Big Sandy chapter includes Floyd, Pike, Johnson, Martin, and Magoffin counties.

Our members have a vision for the Big Sandy area where the economy, democracy, people and land are healthy. To bring about this vision, we organize an annual day of workshops around sustainable agriculture, forestry, efficiency and renewable energy solutions called Growing Appalachia and offer mini-workshops throughout the year. We are also involved in protecting our land and water resources by raising awareness about water quality in Eastern Kentucky. We also work to educate the community on issues of economic justice and voter empowerment.

We hope you will join us at our next chapter meeting and share some of your ideas on how we can work together to bring about our vision of a healthier Kentucky!

Recent Activities

RECLAIM Act and AML pass the House as part of The Moving Forward Act

Kentucky will have a better chance at seeing its $400 million backlog of mine reclamation projects move forward thanks to legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on July 1.

Both the RECLAIM Act and reauthorization of the Abandoned Mine Lands Program were included in the INVEST in America Act (a.k.a The Moving Forward Act), a broad bill addressing the country’s infrastructure needs.

"I am overjoyed that Congress is finally helping to clean up abandoned mines and polluted waterways," said Joanne Hill, a retired nurse originally from Harlan County now living in Pulaski County. "For too long, Kentuckians have been pleading for action with no response.”

Blackjewel has environmental debts, bankruptcy court told

KFTC and allies have asked a federal bankruptcy judge to consider the environmental liabilities created by Blackjewel LLC and its affiliate mining companies in settling the company’s bankruptcy case.

Blackjewel – the company that gained notoriety last year when it shut down while owing its workers unpaid wages – has unreclaimed mines throughout eastern Kentucky, as well as in Virginia and West Virginia.

In filings earlier this year, Blackjewel assured the court that the majority of its permits and reclamation obligations had been assumed by other operations, which would be responsible for maintaining and reclaiming the sites.

However, there has been no activity to transfer 149 of the 213 permits the company holds in Kentucky, research has revealed. In the meantime, environmental violations continue to grow at many of the sites.

“We’re alarmed by the fact that so few permit transfers have even been initiated, let alone completed. We’re also alarmed by high, and increasing, number of permit violations at the non-transferred permits,” stated the letter written by Mary Cromer with the Appalachian Citizens’ Law Center, based in Whitesburg.

Big Sandy chapter hosts Disability Justice workshop

Members of the Big Sandy chapter – inspired by the disability justice workshop at the annual meeting – came together in Prestonsburg to organize a local Disability Justice Workshop.

Members join climate strikes across the commonwealth

Louisville

As we stood under the blazing sun in Jefferson Square Park with our signs and petitions, Greta Thurnburg was delivering this quote to the United Nations, “You must unite behind the science. You must take action. You must do the impossible. Because giving up can never ever be an option.” 

At the Louisville Climate Strike, attendees were ready to unite and take action. KFTC Chairperson Cassia Herron spoke of the importance of voting and fighting against political bullying. Generations young and old clapped and hollered in solidarity. 

We knew that giving up on the planet and our future is not an option.

Fairness Moving Forward

Fairness Campaign Celebrates Dayton Becoming 12th City to Pass Fairness Ordinance!

On August 6, Dayton became the 12th city in Kentucky to pass a fairness ordinance!

Mayor Ben Baker, who helped found the Northern Kentucky KFTC Chapter and served as its Steering Committee representative for several years, led a process that resulted in 5-0 vote in support of extending non-discrimination protections to LGBTQ+ Kentuckians living and working in the city! (You can watch the video here!)

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Chapter Feature:

Growing Appalachia

Growing Appalachia
 
Growing Appalachia is a day of workshops about small-scale farming, energy efficiency, and renewables. We hope to provide promising, sustainable ideas people can use to save/earn money or even start a small business! This conference open to anyone looking to broaden their skills. Learn more about the 2015 conference here.

Regular Meetings:

Prestonsburg Office
152 North Lake Drive
United States
Prestonsburg, KY 41653
Monthly chapter meeting

Join us on the 1st Tuesday of every month at 6 p.m. for the Big Sandy chapter meeting.

Chapter meetings are a great time to plan local work, discuss local and state-wide work, meet new people, and much more. Everyone is welcome and invited to attend! Hope to see you there!

Chapter Organizer:

Jacob Mack-Boll
152 North Lake Drive
Prestonsburg, KY 41653
606-263-4982