Interview with J.R. Gray, August 22, 2006

Gray (House, 1976-1989; 1995-2007, 6th district; Democrat) grew up on a rural farm in Lyon County, Kentucky. In the mid-fifties, Gray worked as a machinist in the steels mills of northern Michigan, and later in the mid-sixties, in mechanical maintenance in the chemical industry of southeast Kentucky. In this interview, Gray describes early years as a worker, chief steward, and business representative of the union. As chairperson of the House labor and industry committee, Gray explains the most memorable issues, including collective bargaining, labor/management advisory work, black lung, right-to-work, and prevailing wage. He also addresses the benefits of the lobbying body and the impact of BOPTROT on the politic and the General Assembly. In addition, Gray discusses significant changes to the House of Representatives, including the impact of the Legislative Research Commission. He points out the difficulties of legislative work, such as the limitations of time, pay, and annual sessions. Gray also shares his memories of influential contemporaries, including Glenn Freeman, Lloyd Clapp, Fred Morgan, Adrian Arnold, and Jim Bruce.

Interview Accession: 
J.R. Gray  
Interview Date: 
LC Subjects: 
Anderson County (Ky.)   Arnold, Adrian   Bourbon County (Ky.)   Boyle County (Ky.)   Bruce, James, 1927-   Clapp, Lloyd E.   Clark County (Ky.)   Collective bargaining--Government employees   Committees   Democratic Party (Ky.)   Estill County (Ky.)   Fayette County (Ky.)   Franklin County (Ky.)   Garrard County (Ky.)   Gray, J.R., 1938-   Gray, J.R., 1938- --Interviews   Jessamine County (Ky.)   Kentucky. General Assembly. House of Representatives   Kentucky. Governor (1971-1974 : Ford)   Kentucky. Governor (1974-1979 : Carroll)   Kentucky. Governor (1979-1983 : Brown)   Labor unions--Kentucky   Legislators--Kentucky--Interviews   Lieutenant governors--Kentucky   Lincoln County (Ky.)   Lyon County (Ky.)   Madison County (Ky.)   McCallum, Shelby   Mercer County (Ky.)   Moberly, Harry, Jr.   Montgomery County (Ky.)   Powell County (Ky.)   Public utilities--Taxation   Right to labor--Kentucky   Scott County (Ky.)   Stovall, Thelma L., 1919-1994   Wages--Law and legislation--Kentucky   Woodford County (Ky.)  

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