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Research, Development, Legislation

The Commonwealth Policy Coalition launched its first chapter in 2020 with a single mission: form an innovative, practical, and groundbreaking policy development service for the welfare of the Commonwealth of Kentucky that empowers future leaders. In 2021, we were officially affirmed as a partner of the Kentucky State Legislature though bicameral legislation in both chambers. In 2022, we organized our first alumni-faculty board with a statewide focus to allow the work of chapters to move forward and create new certified Fellows.

 

Our Mission & Impact

Our mission, affirmed in legislation, is to bring “the Future of the Commonwealth, For the Commonwealth." We do this by offering new solutions to the General Assembly through creating new policy Fellows through our university chapters. Our policy solutions which have resulted in sponsorship during the 2022 Kentucky General Assembly Legislative Session include House Bills 627 and 718.

 

From their work, our Fellows have published briefs in the Commonwealth Policy Papers, our publication outlet in UofL's Institutional Respository, to lay the contours for federal legislation affecting citizens across the country. We house multiple policy centers: the Center for Environmental & Sustainable Development, Center for Healthcare Disparities, and the Center for Rights, Liberties, & Equity. These centers function as problem-solving groups with one or more teams focused on creating new solutions. Such solutions have ranged from a more cost-effective way to increase rural primary care providers, to upcycling pollutant wastes from the bourbon industry to support renewable energy and new economy, re-thinking a more equitable approach to TIF legislation, and brainstorming a plan for federal-state collaboration to bring rail service between Louisville and Nashville. 

Focus & Structure

CPC is not a typical think tank; we are designed as a "think-and-do-tank" to serve the Commonwealth with new solutions. We take ideas outside of the university & theoretical research sphere and develop them in the real world with legislators and other partners. 

 

The work we do is nonexclusive to any single area, and our focus is to incorporate & train Fellows to develop new ideas. We welcome the interests and backgrounds of those who believe in the principles of democratic governance and have the drive to make new solutions happen.

 

Within that scope, we operate with advice from expert faculty and our advisory board. Cross-chapter collaboration between multiple university communities is possible, and we are driven by gaining insight from groups outside that community to form the coalition of feedback our Associates and Fellows need to make good policy. We also work to avoid any explicit conflicts with legislative interests of Kentucky’s universities as best feasible, since our chapters work as part of an independent CPC organization. Our board reviews policies to check for nonpartisanship and also approves the chapter training programs and certification of Fellows.

Collaboration with Legislators

We welcome collaboration with legislators serving on city councils, county boards, in the General Assembly, U.S. Congress, and all agencies in between who share support for our mission. We invite the assistance of legislators and policymakers to notify universities and students of the ability to form chapters across the state, utilize the work of our centers, or connect us to the work that you need assistance on. 

Our Chapters

Currently, we have one established chapter at the University of Louisville. However, we invite students or faculty from other Kentucky research universities to use our existing model to establish a chapter at your school. If interested in joining a chapter or founding a new one at your university, please contact us at kycpc.org@gmail.com.

Our Advisory Board

The role of the advisory board is to establish training curriculum and standards for Fellow programs, certify Associate and Fellow certificates with the chapter, assist in creation of new chapters, and review policies to make recommendations that ensure nonpartisanship, with further involvement optional including application for grants and statewide internal development. Term-appointed board members include executive directors and directors of operations for each of our chapters, which are selected through chapter-only elections. All Fellow alumni who have served as an officer or are considered Senior Fellow alumni are invited to serve on the board.

Support Our Mission

CPC’s chapters are in consistent need of assistance to be able to afford the logistics that come with running a nonprofit think-tank and making truly independent policy. Although our advisory board or chapters do not have 501(c) status at this time, if you would like to support our mission of bringing the future of the Commonwealth for the Commonwealth financially or in another way, contact us at kycpc.org@gmail.com.