Prunty files for 2018 election

2017-12-13 | Messenger-Inquirer

Dec. 13--Rep. Melinda Gibbons Prunty, a member of state House of Representatives' class of 2016, has filed papers to seek a second term in office next year.

Prunty, 60, a Belton Republican, defeated longtime incumbent Brent Yonts for the 15th District House seat, which includes Muhlenberg County and part of Hopkins County.

"Being pro-life is what motivated me to run" in 2016, Prunty said.

She was proud of bills related to abortion passed by legislators in 2017, she said, including one that requires women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound, and a bill that bans abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. A federal judge ruled the ultrasound bill unconstitutional in September.

Prunty said during the 2017 session, she also focused on economic development for the 15th District and worked to address constituents' concerns on a number of issues. She said that although new House members have been warned that sessions where legislators craft state budgets can be "brutal," she is also working on other issues.

Prunty said one bill she plans to introduce will create a tax credit for people with disabilities who have work done on their homes to make their home more accessible. Keeping people in their homes "could cost less than having to go to a nursing home," she said.

"I've had constituents bring several different issues," Prunty said. "I've filed a bill for teachers to get Social Security benefits, or those of their spouse." Teachers in Kentucky are not eligible to receive Social Security.

Prunty said she is also considering filing a bill regarding landlord and tenant issues, and one that would deter people from taking photos from incidents such as traffic accidents and posting them on social media.

"I'm still working hard with our economic development folks ... to try to get jobs to the district," Prunty said. "I can't do it by myself, but I'm advocating for that. One thing I ran on, and I'm still working on, (is) I'm constantly advocating for jobs."

Prunty is also part of a state working group looking into the adoption system that will make recommendations about streamlining the adoption process.

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Prunty, who said she supports term limits, said a second term would give her an opportunity to continue working on her priorities for the 15th District.

"I'm just getting my feet under me and am learning the process," Prunty said. "I don't feel what I've started I've quite finished yet ... I don't want to stay here forever, but I'm just getting my feet under me."

Prunty has one opponent thus far, with Yonts having filed to run again for the 15th District office.

James Mayse, 270-691-7303,, Twitter: @JamesMayse