MOYEN: Okay, I'm here today, uh, with Roger Noe who represented HouseDistrict Eighty-Eight from, I guess your election would've been in `77--
MOYEN: --until 1992, is that correct?
NOE: That's correct.
NOE: The end of `92.
MOYEN: Um, why don't we start first by getting a little bit of your, um,family background, even, even genealogy. What, what do you know about your family? How they arrived here?
NOE: About four generations ago, uh, my great grandparents, threeor four generations ago, uh, came into Harlan County from the North Carolina, state of North Carolina, western North Carolina. Settled here. Um, my grandfather, um, my, my maternal grandfather, um, was involved in some businesses and, uh, drove a school bus his later years. Uh, my paternal grandfather was chief of police for a while in the city of Harlan and owned some businesses during the days of, uh, 00:01:00of, uh, alcohol, wet, when the county was wet.
NOE: When the county went dry they went bankrupt--(laughs)--so thenmy father, uh, worked in the mines for a while and was, uh, a store manager and in his later years sold insurance door-to-door.
NOE: And my family, my immediate family, I'm married, uh, thirty years.Have three children. All three of them are in higher ed-, pursuing higher education now and hopefully, uh, most of them will be finished by next year. And, uh, they will be moving on to, uh, their, other things.
NOE: Married a local, a local girl from the Evarts area.
MOYEN: Okay. Now, uh, growing up in Harlan County, just thinking about,sitting around the dinner table what the conversation may have been like, can you look back and say now, uh, with all the, um, coal mining 00:02:00and the tensions there and the different things involved there, could you say my, my dad or, or my family was on this side of that issue, whether it'd be labor side or management side or -- or was that kind of a non-issue for your family?
NOE: That, that was, it was an issue but, uh, we were, he was trying tofeed his family. (laughs)
NOE: So he pretty much, uh, unlike me, I, I guess I took my more vocalcharacteristics from my mother, but, uh, he was pretty much a company man--
NOE: --so to speak. My mother, whose father had been a coal miner forlabor was more, uh, labor-oriented and I pretty much landed, uh, my philosophy with that perspective and just know, you know, as I got older I saw many of the abuses that were being administered by the owners. 00:03:00
NOE: And, uh, just did not agree with their organizational structure andtechniques and, uh, became more interested in supporting working people than the capitalistic notion of, that the owner is always right.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you trace your, uh, your party allegiance as aDemocrat, does it go back to North Carolina Civil War or, or does it start to occur with the New Deal, or?
NOE: No, actually my relatives, uh, uh, fought for the North on myfather's side.
NOE: I had some documentation of, of the regiment that--
NOE: --documents that, of the, of the, and, uh, I don't know about mymother's side, but on my father's side those folks joined the Union Army.
NOE: And, uh, went, went, uh, went that direction ----------(??)--00:04:00
MOYEN: --were, were they in North Carolina at the time or were they herein Kentucky?
NOE: They were here --
MOYEN: --okay, all right--
NOE: --at the time. Yeah, yeah, so I may have missed the time a littlebit about when they came here--
NOE: --but I think whatever generation came here, uh, great-great or,uh, yeah, I'd say great grandparents, it was great-great grandparents came here about, uh, moved in here about 1830.
NOE: So, uh, it was the great-great grandparents, not the greatgrandparents --
NOE: Uh, and, no, my allegiance to the Democrat Party, uh, developed asa college students, uh.
I could not have attended college had it not been for the NationalDefense Student Loan. And the loans that just came about in the sixties.
NOE: Um, I began college in 1967 with a loan from the National Defenseand some scholarship money and I could not have attended had it not 00:05:00been for that, and I got to thinking about that. You know, how could, uh, where did that come from?
NOE: And those kinds of policies generated, were generated by Democrats.
NOE: And I started looking at, I was, you know, in college and theVietnam War was going on and there was a lot of political activism and I wanted to get active. And, uh, ended up being the, uh, chair of the college Democrats.
MOYEN: And this is at Cumberland?
NOE: At Cumberland College--
NOE: --my senior, junior or senior year. And being the campus chair forBert Combs for Governor during those days. And Bert and I became close friends after that. Um, but yeah, uh, given the, the, uh, culture of the, of the day and knowing--and I was a history major, too and studying the policies of both Democrats and Republicans, the philosophy 00:06:00of Democrats and Republicans, I could see no other direction than going into a Democrat because of what they were doing for college students like myself. And, uh, allowing us opportunities to, um, become more than what we could've have become had we not had some opportunities.
MOYEN: Was that a departure from your family? Were, had they beenRepublican, leaning? NOE: It, it, they had been leaning Republicans. Yeah, they voted for Nixon--
MOYEN: --leaning ---------(??)----------
NOE: --um, voted for Nixon, uh, when Nixon and Kennedy were running.
NOE: And, uh, I think they were both registered as Democrats but theyseemed to support Repu--the city of Harlan was Republican. We rented from the mayor who was a Republican. If you didn't do what some of those people wanted you to do--
NOE: --it could make it hard on us.
NOE: So, they tended to vote Republican until I got really active andthen my parents became strong Democrats--(laughs)-- 00:07:00
NOE: Along with everyone else in my family.
MOYEN: Now, you're, uh, talking about, uh, people in Harlan beingRepublican--
NOE: --the city of Harlan--
MOYEN: -- the city of Harlan --
NOE: The city of Harlan, the county is Democrat.
NOE: But the city is predominantly Republican.
MOYEN: Does, is that, is it still that way today?
NOE: It's that way today.
MOYEN: Okay. Even though Harlan County, when you look at a map ofKentucky would be considered a Democratic stronghold, correct?
NOE: Um-hm. That's right, that's right.
NOE: But the, but the, the, the Republicans are concentrated in the cityand that's not unusual; that's where the professional folks are and the folks, the business, the retailers and the managers and the attorneys and physicians--
NOE: --are, are in, in there. The dentists, they're traditionallyRepublicans. They have the money, so they're Republicans. (both laugh)
MOYEN: So, we jumped ahead to colleges, was there anyone during, um, yourformative years with education or in church or, um, in family that also 00:08:00really influenced you, um, maybe politically? Had you start thinking about those, even if it wasn't thinking about running for a House seat?
NOE: Um-hm. Um, I, I couldn't focus on one individ-, I could focus onone individual, uh, but, but it goes, it was out of college by then.
NOE: I was very active after college in the Harlan County Jaycees. Idon't even know if they have those organizations anymore. They're, uh, young people involved up to thirty-six years old and I was, became president of the, of the Jaycees, doing a lot of civic activity, and became close friends with Senator Bert Ed Pollitte who was the state senator from Harlan at that time. And I also chartered a Young Democrat's Club in Harlan and was, um, elected to a state office in Young Democrats that same year. And Senator Pollitte started talking 00:09:00to me about public office. And, um, I decided, at that time the, the only vacant--and I wasn't, I wasn't interested in local county politics. Um, and I was teaching at the college at the time; I was teaching psychology here, and so I decided to pursue, uh, a candidacy, a position in as state representative.
NOE: And, uh, that seat was open at the time. There were two otherfolks running. Interestingly enough, one of the folks--
MOYEN: --two others in the, --in the primary?
NOE: In the primary.
NOE: One of them was, uh, Tom Greer(??) who was a student of mine.An old, he was older than me but he was going to class, taking some classes up here and the other was Will(??) Jack Wilson who was, who had been a good friend and, and a close associate to my wife's family. And, uh, I ended up winning that election. And having, and then I had to run against, uh, Forster, um, I can't remember his first name. It's 00:10:00Carl Forster's cousin that's the, uh, federal judge.
NOE: Carl was practicing with Bill, Bill Forster--
NOE: --at the time. I thought that would be a real challenge. I mean,here's Bill Forster with Carl Forster who was going on to be federal, a federal judge and they, they represented coal companies.
NOE: And I just came with strong Democrat principles and went to thepeople and, uh, but I won overwhelmingly. And, uh, was able to be successful.
MOYEN: So, this was in 1977--
NOE: --[nineteen] seventy-seven.
MOYEN: This is your, is this the first public office that you haddecided to run for?
NOE: It was, it was.
NOE: I'd fooled around some with Young Democrats; I almost withdrewon April 4, 1977. We had eight foot of water in my house and I lost everything and I just, you know, my wife was nine months pregnant, 00:11:00eight months pregnant. And it was pretty devastating but I took a couple of weeks and cleaned, you know, the house up as best I could and then I cleaned my parent's house up; they got flooded, too. And was on the verge on withdrawing and I thought, Well, I'm already, you know, I've paid my twenty-five dollars--(both laugh) So around the first of May or the second week of May, I got back into campaigning--the election was the third week--and I did get around to see some folks and ended winning that primary.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Um, you mentioned campaigning hard and thinking thatyou're gonna have a challenge, what issue, do you recall what issues you campaigned on. Um, what things were im-, important to you or what you ---------(??)?
NOE: Well, in the primary it was more of a personality conflict, uh,contest--
NOE: --because we all three were Democrats, we were young guys. Idon't think any of us were much over--I was twenty-six or twenty-seven, twenty-seven. Tom Greer(??) was thirty or thirty-one, Bill Jack was 00:12:00twenty-eight or twenty-nine. We were all three young, you know, young guys. Um, I, uh, campaigned on several issues of flood mitigation; flood control was a big one. And, um.
MOYEN: And fresh in people's mind.
NOE: And fresh in people's minds, uh, campaigned on promoting HarlanCounty, uh, jobs, um, coal severance tax return.
NOE: Um, those, those were some of the key issues during, during thosedays. Education was a big issue; I campaigned on improving education and salaries for teachers.
MOYEN: Did you have an official campaign strategy? Did you have friendsor, um, acquaintances who you kind of assigned to different precincts to say, "Hey, I need you to go out--
NOE: --um-hm, I did. Uh, I did do that and many of them were friendsof mine through the Jaycees, the Young Democrats, the college. I, I can remember having college kids, college students. Um, we couldn't 00:13:00afford that first election--I think I spent thirteen hundred dollars that first primary. Uh, we used poster paper and magic markers to make campaign signs. (laughs) MOYEN: Um-hm.
NOE: Um, had students at the polls. At, at that time there were norestrictions on campaigning at the polls. Had students giving out cards and, uh, some of the faculty members stood around the polls in different precincts and, uh, and supported my candidacy.
MOYEN: Um-hm. And, and what was your margin of victory in, I meanapproximately--
MOYEN: --in both the primary and, and the general, if you recall.
NOE: Uh, yeah. In the, in the, uh, primary out of--let's see, I got,I can recall about two thousand votes; Tom Greer got about a thousand votes; and Bill Jack got about three hundred. 00:14:00
NOE: In the general, I got about eight thousand votes and my opponentgot about three thousand votes.
NOE: Now, if I'm, if.
NOE: Yeah, I ran seven or eight times.
NOE: And I think that's right.
NOE: Uh, during that time.
MOYEN: Did you enjoy campaigning or was it one of the experiences of, ofbeing a politician that you--
NOE: --I enjoyed it at first. Um, and, uh, would've enjoyed it insubsequent, uh, campaigns but I was so pressed for time. The, the first time I campaigned I took a leave of absence for a semester and was having a good time meeting people, campaigning, talking about the issues. And then the flood hit. And I had to stop campaigning, uh, but after that I had to campaign while still being a full-time college 00:15:00professor up here and respond to a lot of issues that had come up as, as a legislator. And some were positive and some were not so positive according to who you know--
NOE: --the person I was talking to. And people in Harlan expected somuch, uh, because we were so in such a, a poor shape around Harlan, for services. And many people have false perceptions of what state government is about and what the state legislature's role is or, or the roles, the state, the state legislator's role is that, uh, it became very difficult. I had people demanding that I stopped the jets from flying patterns over Harlan, some of the flight practice patterns, and the, the, uh, that, uh, that I get the washing machines repaired at the, uh, housing projects. Uh, just the, the lack of understanding of 00:16:00the role made it more difficult. And I, I had a policy of responding to every request in some manner or, and that, that made campaigning difficult because every time I'd go see someone they, they, normally, they usually had a request, they, they got to be thinking about something.
MOYEN: Um-hm, right.
NOE: And it could be city government, county government, stategovernment, or federal government.
NOE: And also compounding that was that Hal Rogers got elected in about'80 or '82 and people thought I was Hal Rogers. (Moyen laughs) That people who didn't keep up with, with government, you know, or didn't take the newspapers and a lot of people didn't and, you know, it, Hal Rogers would do something they didn't like and they'd jump me about it or they do something, he, they thought, or something in Washington that they thought that their social security or something anybody needed to take care of it because they thought I was Hal Rogers.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Um, getting back to your campaign, were there any,obviously there's the door-to-door, the signs with markers, that type 00:17:00of grassroots, were there any county or city leaders that either in Harlan or Cumberland that you felt were key supporters that, um, were really helpful? You've mentioned a Mr. Pollitte.
NOE: Yeah, Senator Pollitte, he was, he was extremely helpful. Um,there was a county court clerk by the name of Tommy Lee at the time. He was, he was very supportive of, of me and my candidacy; he was very helpful. Um, at one point, uh, the county judge, Tip Baker and then the, the, his, uh, follow, a person after the Republican won, ------ ---(??) Belcher (??) I helped her get elected, and then she helped me a little bit along. Um, I'd always touched base with the, uh, county magistrates. Most of them were very supportive and would help some. 00:18:00
NOE: Um, city government, I touched base with mayors but they didn't getvery much involved and in Harlan we had, it was pretty much Republican. And, uh, I did get a lot of votes out of the city, you know, for a long time up, up until I was beaten and defeated in '92.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit about, uh, maybe it's anon-issue but you mentioned supporting Combs in the Combs-Ford election in '72 , uh, '71.
NOE: Yes, '72, '71-72, yeah.
MOYEN: Um, did you in your own mind have a clear, uh, I mean a lot, in alot of ways the Ford election and then with Julian Carroll ends--
MOYEN: --um-hm, um-hm--
NOE: --the Democratic factionalism but did you see yourself as a part ofa certain faction of the, of the Democratic Party?
NOE: For a while I did.
NOE: It was the Combs faction.00:19:00
MOYEN: Right, um-hm.
NOE: And, uh, I guess his name is Renfro--I can't remember his name--butit even pervaded, uh, Young Democrats at that, uh, you know, ------- (??) after that.
NOE: And, uh, we were involved with, with the Combs faction and I sawsome of, some of the split and, and I supported Julian Carroll who was the, you know, sort of the Combs faction at the time. So, yeah, there was a, there was a difference but it sort of melted away in the eighties after John Y. Brown got elected.
NOE: And then, then Martha Layne, it just sort of melted away during theeighties those, the, the Democrat factionalism.
MOYEN: By the time though you are getting involved--and correct me ifI'm wrong--it seems like early on starting with the thirties and then in the forties and fifties, it's kind of this Happy Chandler, Clements, Combs personality--
NOE: --Ed Prichard --
NOE: I was with Ed Prichard--
NOE: --you know, we had a conference in, in the eighties, a group of us,00:20:00the, what did they call us? Young Turks.
NOE: I was involved with those. As a matter of fact, I was kind of theleader of the Young Turks. And, uh, we had a, a conference and Ed came and presented and.
NOE: Uh, I mean that this, this Ed Prichard thing goes way back in myfamily. He, he represented some of my, my uncle in a, in a case in the thirties.
MOYEN: Um, so did you kind of view that as less of a personality thingand, and more, at least in the early seventies, we're probably talking in the Democratic Party, a more progressive Democratic Party (??) versus the--
NOE: --versus conservative, yeah--
MOYEN: --the Southern Dixiecrats--
MOYEN: Almost George Wallace--
MOYEN: --type of.
NOE: Yeah, the progressive Democrats pur--I don't know if we were, Imean we perceived ourselves to be more progressive with the Combs, Combs faction or that, that group Breathitt-Combs-Carroll. But, you 00:21:00know, as I look, as I traveled other parts of the country, you know, I, I discovered that there, you know, there're no liberals in Kentucky; they're only less conservative and I was one of the less conservative.
NOE: But, uh, after, you know, you go to Chicago and some of thoseDemocrats in New York, Boston.
NOE: I mean, they're, they're more so than most Kentuckians, that's whatit (??) mean progressive, liberal, whatever.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm. So, with, did you feel like your support in anyway in the early seventies, Combs, did that help you in any way when you were elected and Julian Carroll was Governor?
NOE: I think it did. I think it was subtle but, uh, I do think thatwas very helpful because I already knew Julian through the Combs's campaign. Um, I didn't have any trouble getting an audience with 00:22:00him if I wanted to go see him about something. And, uh, it, it was helpful. I think it was helpful. And some of the little minor pieces of legislation that I got through my freshman year and some resolutions and just little things, uh, I think could've gone differently had I been the Chandler type--
MOYEN: Do you recall--and this is jumping ahead here a little bit on mysheet of questions--but do you recall any specific res-, resolutions or anything that you managed to either, um, write and/or sponsor your freshman year?
NOE: Um-hm. Yeah, yeah, I do. I did one, uh, on establishing the, uh,Kentucky Coal Museum.
NOE: Uh, and it's now established.
NOE: It's in Benham up here.
MOYEN: That took, uh, quite some time, didn't it?
NOE: To, to finally build, yeah, it took until 1990, I put, uh, 3--400--00:23:00500,000--575,000 in the budget to get the building started.
NOE: That was in 1990 but we, we established it as the, the place in1978.
NOE: And I had a resolution, a joint resolution which has impact of, alot I think. I know a joint resolution does but I think my resolution was a joint resolution on, uh, flooding.
NOE: And I don't remember what it was but it had something to do withflood mitigation and setting up, uh, the process for establishing, uh, some flood mitigation programs.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm. I'm not sure I exactly understand a floodmitigation program but does that help bring resources here to.
NOE: Um-hm. Um-hm, yeah, infrastructure.
NOE: Um, at the time dredging but that's not prove to be verysuccessful. Flood walls, uh, working with, uh, matching money with federal government to do, uh, certain flood walls, uh, flood insurance 00:24:00programs. We didn't have any of that during, you know, during the early seventies.
MOYEN: Right, um-hm. So after your election did, did Governor Carrollgive you a call or anything to congratulate you?
NOE: Um-hm. Yes.
MOYEN: Um, how quickly from the time you're elected do you turn yourfocus to what you wanted to do? Um, and is that all wrapped up with going to Kentucky Dam Village--
NOE: --no, I had, I'd already taken a group of--which I led--(laughs)--agroup of anti-strip mining, um, activists to Frankfort before I even was sworn in.
NOE: We met with Bob Bell who was the environmental person at the time.And, uh, I had organized and took a group of people, about the Cranks Creek strip mining area. They were just raping that, uh, that mountain 00:25:00out there and, uh, it attributed I thought in a big way to some of the flooding. The, the runoff and the flooding and, uh, there was a columnist during those days. His name was Jack Anderson who wrote a, a weekly column for the New York Times or somewhere and he came down and, and wrote a column about it. And I've been actively involved in opposing strip mining. Now, I, I supported mining in general(??).
MOYEN: Um-hm, right.
NOE: I, I supported mining legislation in general but, uh, would doas much as I could to, uh, stall anything that would promote surface mining and mountaintop removal-type activities.
MOYEN: Um-hm, did you go down to Kentucky Dam Village after yourelection?
NOE: Oh yeah, I did, getting back to that. Yeah, I digress. (bothlaugh)
MOYEN: That, that's worth, worth mentioning. When you're down there,having just been elected for the first time, are you able to make any 00:26:00request as to, especially--and another good reason to interview you-- we're still in the seventies. This is before John Y. Brown.
NOE: Um-hm, um-hm.
MOYEN: And, the legislative independence--
MOYEN: And all, or, or were you pretty much told, here's, here's whatyou're gonna be doing?
NOE: Yeah, that was it. I was told here's what I'm going to be doingand I was--but, the, the weekend was spent being lobbied by leadership candidates.
NOE: It didn't matter who the leadership candidates were, I was stillgoing to have certain committee appointments based on being a freshman, and I got some good ones because I was in buddies with Julian Carroll who controlled the leadership.
MOYEN: Right, um-hm.
NOE: So I got some pretty good appointments. I didn't getappropriations & revenue that year but my second term I was appointed to appropriations & revenue by Boom-Boom Kenton. You know, oh, and, and Julian was on his way out but Boom-Boom was gonna be Governor.
NOE: He passed away before he had that opportunity but he took me on A &R and of course I would've been supportive of, of his candidacy had he, had he lived.
MOYEN: Um-hm, so, can you tell me a little bit about what your firstday in Frankfort is, is like as a leg-, legislator? What was what you thought it might be? And what was completely different as a twenty- year-old idealistic ---------(??).
NOE: (laughs) Yeah, yeah, but that's. You're, you're right on themoney. I went down there with some, you know, with, with the idea that I could be a, a change agent fairly soon. You know, that I was articulate; I was better educated than 90 percent of them. And that having been elected over a Republican by such a large majority--and at that time it was like eighty, eighty Democrats and twenty Republicans in the House--uh, that, uh, I would make a difference real early. And, 00:28:00uh, I found out really quick that while everyone was nice and, and friendly and they're politicians, they, you know--
NOE: --there was a, there was a pecking order and a process that,uh, I had to be involved in and, and I acclimated to that fairly, fairly early and, and thought, I, I guess I'm smart enough to see the writing on the wall. But I did raise some cane about some things that freshmen normally don't do but, uh, it was more just raising cane than accomplishing very much. In my freshman year, uh, I accomplished as much or more than, than any other freshman, but , uh, I guess the, the competition, the unwritten competition was between my, for being the freshman, positive, most, uh, legislator-of-the-year, I think--I, I 00:29:00don't know if they gave one at that time--but it was between myself and Bill Weinberg. And we were sparring, I mean, we were buddies, but, you know, to, to, to be the most effective.
NOE: And, um, of course, I did beat him on the coal museum. But he, hehad a resolution on the coal museum, too. (both laugh) ---------(??) But his didn't get through the process. (laughs)
NOE: But, um, that, that occurred and then I worked, after that freshmanyear I didn't, they didn't have outstanding legislators until I guess the late eighties, and I got, you know, I got picked to be one of those.
MOYEN: Um-hm, okay.
NOE: By, by the media, anyways(??).
MOYEN: Um-hm. And you, you mentioned that you knew Julian Carroll andthat you felt like that probably helped you with committee assignments and probably with, with some other-- NOE: --the constituents' services type of things. When, when someone would need something that was 00:30:00not moving along in state government--I can't think of specific examples--but I could call the Governor's--oh, bridges, yeah, bridges washed out by the floods. There was a guy by the name of Gill ---- ----(??) who was the Governor's, in the Governor's office and one of his responsibilities was transportation and I could call him and he would see if we could get some bridge money for a washed out bridge or something.
MOYEN: Okay. All right. Could you tell me a little bit about, how, howwould you describe Julian Carroll's leadership style?
NOE: Hm. Julian Carroll's leadership style, he was a bottom-line kindof guy. He, he liked to see the job done. Uh, the ends-justified-the- means kind of leadership.
NOE: He, he was pretty ruthless in some areas on getting things donebut he was always, he always had a big smile and a pat on the back but 00:31:00now he was ruthless and, and driven, uh, and would not take "no" for an answer. He had to take it but he didn't like it.
NOE: But yeah, he was.
MOYEN: Did you find yourself in opposition to him on certain issues?
NOE: Uh, some of the coal issues, yeah, um-hm. But he, when he, he wasa good winner. He was an excellent winner.
NOE: You know, when he beats you he would hug you and say, "Friend,you're gonna be okay. Everything is fine." But it wasn't that much during those two years. Most of the stuff that, uh, he, his policies that he presented were not out of, uh, out of, out of the direction of the, what I would go with or what I, you know, some of, some of it, I didn't care one way or another, so I'd support it. I didn't have any reason to fight him on stuff I didn't care about.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm.
NOE: Railroads and stuff like that. (laughs)
MOYEN: Um-hm. Um-hm. Did you ever have any confon-, confrontations00:32:00with him over certain legislative?
NOE: Not, not until later years when he was a lobbyist.
MOYEN: Okay, okay.
NOE: Not while he was Governor.
NOE: He did, well, now, there was one meeting that we, uh, he had aconfrontation and I was in that meeting with some, um, labor anti-strip mining type of folks. And, uh, I had arranged the meeting with them. They were protesting outside.
NOE: And, uh, they wanted to meet with him and I arranged the meetingand sat in on the meeting and they started yelling at him and he started yelling back. And I, uh, I just, they, I don't know, I don't think they got mad at me. But I didn't support him or them; I just let them fight it out.
MOYEN: Um-hm, okay.
MOYEN: The, the House leadership at the, at the time, Bill Kenton, BobbyRichardson, did they, as some of the history textbooks, in your opinion 00:33:00do essentially what Julian told them to do?
NOE: Yeah. Pretty much, yeah.
MOYEN: Were you able to spot--now, granted this might be difficultfor you to answer because it's your first--but did others talk about or were you able to spot maybe the beginning of this legislative independence, or?
NOE: Yeah, over in the Senate.
MOYEN: Or leadership at, at certain ----------(??).
NOE: Yeah, there was not much of it in the House at all but Mike Moloneyand some folks over in the Senate were grumbling and, uh, talking to me and, uh, Bert Ed but, uh, Senator Pollitte, uh, was close, very close to Joe Prather. And Joe was the administration's man and Bert Ed had advised me just to kind of lay low.
NOE: And not get into that.
MOYEN: That was good advice.
NOE: Because he wasn't gonna get into it over in the Senate and itwouldn't be good for he and I to be differing on administration 00:34:00policies. It's an inside baseball.
NOE: And, uh, just, just lay low and let them fight it out. And that's,as a freshman I was happy to do that.
MOYEN: I'm sure. Do you recall anything about, um, after the legislativesession is done about the special session that Thelma Stovall called--
NOE: --yeah, a little bit about that, yeah.
MOYEN: Tell me a little bit about your recollections about, about that.
NOE: Well, the thing, the vision(??) I get the most is Weinberg beating,you know, driving a nail in the, the front door of the Capitol building and almost getting arrested for it. (both laugh) I can't remember what the note, you know, what his sign said. But, uh, yeah, I just was shocked. I mean, I get this call that Thelma is calling a special session. We had to go up there. You know, Thelma doing, you know, what is she doing? And I called, uh, Jerry Blanton who was our PVA here, who lived with Thelma while he was in school in Louisville. 00:35:00They're big buddies. I said, "What"--he said, "She's gonna lower taxes." And, uh, so we went up there and I, I don't remember what happened after that but, uh, we were there, I guess, did we go up there? I think we did for a day, or two, or I, seems like--I can't remember; I've been up there so many times. That was, that was when Weinberg was involved in putting that thing on the door and I was up there during that time. That's what, I don't know why I was, was, was that for the special session?
MOYEN: I've, I've heard of that and I think so but I don't know--
NOE: ---------(??) know about it--
MOYEN: --I don't know any more details about that than you do.
NOE: That's twenty years ago. Okay.
MOYEN: Well, in, in a lot of respects, that was viewed as her attemptto gain some popularity or some momentum in what would be the next gubernatorial race.
NOE: Right. That's right.
MOYEN: Do you recall who you supported in the 1980 primary?00:36:00
NOE: Uh, I think it was, was it Terry McBrayer?
MOYEN: Uh-hm, he was running.
NOE: Yeah, it was Terry McBrayer. He was the administration candidate.
NOE: I'm pretty sure it was Terry McBrayer.
MOYEN: Now, what do you recall of, from that primary about John Y. Brownand this, just all of a sudden here he is--
MOYEN: -- and, and --
NOE: --we thought it was kind of a joke. Uh, we thought McBrayer was,was a winner. Uh, and it, John Y. would, you know, come in third. I can't remember who the second person would be at the time. If I knew all of them I could probably, if I heard all the ones all that were in it but then, uh, toward the last couple of days people were saying John Y. Brown is gonna win this, and I was still thinking McBrayer was gonna come, win it but by a closer margin than I'd originally thought. 00:37:00And when he won I was just extremely surprised. And didn't know what to expect.
MOYEN: Um-hm. To what would you attribute his victory--
NOE: --Phyllis George Brown. Her popularity and her name recognitionand, and then, and, and the money he spent, the way he spent it. The way he, the way he focused on what is now the Golden Triangle with the media advertising and, uh, and her popularity. And his, his name recognition through his father and his chicken business.
NOE: Um-hm, um-hm. Had you had any interaction with him before he wasGovernor?
NOE: None whatsoever. I didn't know who he was, yeah.
NOE: I mean I knew by name but I didn't, never had met him at all. He'dnever been to Frankfort to my knowledge.
MOYEN: Um-hm. And how would you compare or contrast his leadershipstyle with what you've been accustomed to with Julian Carroll?
NOE: Oh, it was totally different. It was, it was, uh, it was00:38:00totally different. He, uh, he did not get involved in the leadership elections. He did not, uh, he had administrative policies he wanted the leadership to handle and help him pass. Um, I really liked his style as far as government leadership goes. He, uh, he, uh, served as the executor. Did the executive branch stuff and left the legislative activities to the legislature. And, uh, it was a, uh, it was a, uh, a great ride for the four years he was Governor. And I supported him the second time. He didn't win but it was a good ride. It was, it was professional politics, if there is such a thing, and professional government which there is such a thing.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Um, during especially the early days of hisadministration when people are beginning to realize he's really not 00:39:00gonna push for a legislative leadership slate of candidates, was there a bunch of talk amongst legisl-, legislators at the time about legislative independence or did that kind of come later towards the end of the session, or was it right then people knew things were different?
NOE: People knew. We, we went in bright-eyed and bushy-tail.
NOE: We knew that it was, we, we actually had, we could do some thingson our own and that, uh, he was not going to get involved in every little issue that, that the legislator, legislature was discussing and that, uh, we could be somewhat innovative in, uh, in the direction that we were taking.
MOYEN: Do you recall any specific legislation either of his or of yourown during his tenure that sticks out in your mind as particular, particularly effective or valuable?
NOE: Um, I can remember some things I was involved in at that time that00:40:00appeared to be valuable. I'd moved in the direction of mental health legislation and was sponsoring and, and pushing for a, um, the, um, [KRS] 202A civil commitment legislation for the mentally ill. And we, uh, that was a, a very involved thing as far as the mental illness. And then--
MOYEN: --what, what were the, what were the problems that thatlegislation was trying to address (??)?
NOE: The, uh, the problems were the diagnosis and treatment once, oncean individual was civilly committed and, and then there was the problem with the civil liberties, you know. Uh, and I had trouble with that but you have to weigh the civil liberties with protection of society and self and others. And, uh, we ended up going with the seven-day initial civil commitment. And I think it, it had been open-ended 00:41:00so that impacted civil liberties on the negative side when you could just send someone to a mental hospital and leave him there. So the, the, uh, psychiatrist then had to be involved in whether or not, or the mental health professionals, uh, within seven days had to make a determination. The other major piece of legislation I was involved in that Brown did get involved in, the supreme justice did --I can't think of his name at the time. His, his wife was labor secretary. Um, uh, "guilty but mentally ill," uh, legislation.
NOE: That was my, my legislation and Brown supported that. We talkedabout that. He was, he was a supporter of that. And then--
MOYEN: --can you--
[Pause in recording.]
MOYEN: Okay, go ahead.00:42:00
NOE: Yeah, the guilty but mentally ill legislation was highlycontroversial at the time. It, it required an individual who has, who committed a crime but was mentally ill, too, you know, even though they committed a crime, they were also mentally ill, uh, be treated for their mental illness while in prison. The upshot of that, that the, the prisons never did do that. They have never administered that law fairly as they, as they should have. But there was an underlying trick, I guess, it's not a trick but all legislators do it. There, you know, there was some underlying things in the legislation that, that I was interested in and that was, um, the fact that constitutionally you can't execute a mentally ill person.
NOE: So if a person did commit a heinous crime and was mentally ill, heneeded to be treated. They could not automatically send him--I mean, 00:43:00you could plead guilty but mentally ill and he wouldn't be executed. I don't think that's happened yet either.
NOE: But it could happen and I'm not a proponent of, um, killing otherhuman beings whether it's done by society or individually.
NOE: So, uh, that was one of the approaches that I've taken as a, lessprogress--or a more progressive Democrat, or I was referred to as the most liberal person in the House by Woody Allen one time. (both laugh) Well, I don't know if that's the case or not. I mean, I'm from Harlan; how can you be a liberal person from Harlan? The other, uh, what John Y. and I got into over, or disagreed on that I ended up not supporting was the gasoline tax increase. He was in bed with the Kentuckians for Better Transportation group and those are just a bunch of highway contractors, too--
NOE: --who, who want to make money and they want better transportation,00:44:00I mean but the way, you know, their, their goal was to make more money, build more roads. So, the only way they could build more roads was to get more money through gasoline tax. And, uh, we were in high inflation, uh, I think, nationally Ford was president some time during that time, or someone. Anyway, we were, the gasoline was not as bad as it is now but it was bad for the time.
NOE: And I just couldn't support raising gasoline tax on our folks herewith, with the roads as bad as we had anyway. We weren't getting any help--
NOE: --on our transport-, I mean you drove up here today. They're a lotbetter than they--this, 119 wasn't even open at the time and we were going over on 525, come, to come to ---------(??). So I, I couldn't in good conscience add more money to, to build more roads in, you know, the Cincinnati area.
NOE: I just couldn't do that.
NOE: And we were also putting in tons of dollars, uh, millions of00:45:00dollars through the coal severance tax program. And John Y. Brown changed that program and took a lot of the coal severance tax dollars to meet budget problems and do, do some other things that we thought we deserved to get part of that money back here to, to improve our infrastructure and have quality of life.
MOYEN: So did you all have a confrontation over this or did the question--------(??)?
NOE: I had my first confrontation with, uh, uh, Jim King who washis chief of staff. And Jim and I had a pretty, pretty tough con-, confrontation. And then I had a little bit of a confrontation with John Y. but it was, but it was not as contentious. You know, he understood, you know, he, you know, he didn't care. (laughs) John Y. Brown, well, okay, But Jim King was real, you know, the real bureaucrat of the thing and, and we had a con-, more of a confrontation there and they threatened to have a candidate against me and, you know--Jim did; 00:46:00John Y. didn't. He, he didn't care(??). So, I liked him. He was, he was all right.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm.
NOE: I went over to his house when I was running for superintendent ofpublic instruction.
NOE: And we ate chicken. (both laugh.
MOYEN: -- a surprise ----------(??).
NOE: Yeah. And he was supporting me during that time--
NOE: --during that part of my life when I was running statewide, so.
MOYEN: Uh, let me go back to the--
MOYEN: --legislation you were discussing about mental illness.
MOYEN: Now, although your professional career and legislative careerended up really focusing on education, you originally were involved in psychology, is, is that correct?
NOE: Yeah, I taught, I'm a professor of psychology.
MOYEN: Right, okay.
NOE: And taught psychology here for--oh gosh, I don't know, twenty yearsand became a full professor and was involved in mental health issues and health issues in general. I, I sponsored the phenylketonuria testing bill, bill for children and some other things like that. 00:47:00
MOYEN: And you have had a, uh, spent some time at Eastern State Hospitaland then held, held, um, I'm not sure what the name of it is, here in Harlan County, some sort of health, mental health facility that you did you some work at--
NOE: --um-hm, yeah, comprehensive care facility, I was a mental healthcounselor.
MOYEN: Okay. So did all of that influence a lot of your views? Do youthink that compared to other legislators you were more capable or more able to speak on a lot of these issues?
NOE: I think I had more information.
NOE: Cognitive information than, than the other legislators did in, inthat, in that field. I'm a licensed clinical counselor.
NOE: I hold that license, uh, so I think I had more cognitiveinformation than the other legislators in, in, in most topics.
NOE: I don't want to be egotistical, but there are some real dumbasses00:48:00up there, I tell you. (both laugh) Okay.
MOYEN: Let me ask you about this, your committee assignments I believechange also during this period from 1980-84.
MOYEN: You are put on appropriations & revenue and then you also get onthe House education committee.
NOE: That's correct, um-hm.
MOYEN: Um, was that your choosing?
NOE: That was my choice.
MOYEN: Okay. Why was that?
NOE: Um, well, the, the leadership recognized that I had some expertisein education and when I asked for that assignment, they said, "Sure, we'll," you know, "we'll do that." Uh, there was a vacancy. Jimmy White had just died. And he, uh, there was a vacancy there and rather than place his wife on there who was replacing him, who had no experience in education they thought it would be best. And so I was kind of asked to be on the education committee. I'd mentioned it to some folks before that I, you know, if there's ever an opening --uh, 00:49:00uh, who was the basketball player that was the speaker of the House, um, um, for a couple of sessions? Um, he runs the basketball museum in Lexington. He played for UK. Oh, I had a conversation, he had asked me if I would serve, serve on, on the education committee and we talked about it and so when Jimmy passed away he called, and.
NOE: And I accepted the appointment. Now the A & R appointment was morepolitical. I mean, it was political. That was, uh, me getting with Boom-boom Kenton and committing to be for him for Governor.
MOYEN: Yeah. (both laugh)
NOE: And, you know, I had the exper--
MOYEN: -- -----------(??) political move -----------(??) --
NOE: --I had the expertise I thought. I, I mean, of course, it was realdifficult to be effective on A & R because Joe Clarke had a real bias against Eastern Kentucky in general. And that, I, I didn't want to believe that for a long time but he did. I think it, it emanated from 00:50:00his contentious relationship with Hoover Dawahare.
NOE: When that was all going on and he just , Joe, just not thinkingthrough things, just , just, uh, became prejudiced and discriminated against Eastern Kentucky in general. He , he kind of had an attitude that Eastern Kentuckians are dumb and he could run roughshod over all of them even though that Weinberg and I were not so dumb; we were still from Eastern Kentucky, so we had to be pretty much in that same pot.
MOYEN: Um-hm. So, at the end of John Y. Brown's tenure, even though thegeneral consensus is, he was a very good Governor because he allowed the legislature to do what they wanted to and, and he had his issues, and even if you disagreed with him, he understood it, understood why.
MOYEN: By 1984, the rest of the nation, and to a large degree the South,economically has pulled out of this reces-, recession is starting to 00:51:00really move along. And yet, if you look at what Joe Clarke or Mike Moloney or even just the budget in general, Kentucky is still lagging behind--
MOYEN: --in, in some respects and not quite catching up, to what wouldyou attribute that as, as a legisla-, a legislator, as a member of appropriations and revenue? And I know that's, that's a, a challenging --
NOE: --well, I, I don't know if, if --
MOYEN: --and, and broad-based question.
NOE: --as a legislator or, or a, a legislative committee, I don'tknow of, I could not go on record as saying we knew what to do. We, we were getting information from the economists, uh, and Clarke and company were kind of running that show, and they seemed to be trying to generate the, the, do, do the kind of things that would 00:52:00generate revenue. They were very corporate minded and try, they were giving these businesses all these breaks and following that Reagan mentality that it will trickle down. And we were doing all those, uh, conservative corporate, conservative kinds of policies through the legislation but it, it still wasn't catching up.
NOE: So, I don't, I don't know why , why it didn't catch on fasterbecause we were doing what was, uh, obvious to do at the time to cause the , uh, the revenue to be increased and the budget to , to become better.
MOYEN: Okay. When Martha Layne Collins wins the election in 1983,this in some respects had to be good news for you because as you were beginning to focus on education legislation--
MOYEN: --a Governor is elected who essentially, she wants to be the00:53:00education Governor--
NOE: --education Governor, right.
MOYEN: I mean, that is her--
MOYEN: --platform essentially and yet, especially during the firstsession, she fails.
MOYEN: And, or maybe not she, she and the legislature--
NOE: --yeah, the policies did, did fail--
MOYEN: --the policy failed.
MOYEN: Why was that?
NOE: It was a, uh, a money thing. I mean the, uh, some of the thingsthat she wanted to do would've cost money and she was , she was not bold in, in asking to , to generate money. I mean we had some legislative caucuses and she attended those, the Democrat caucuses, where she asked what the legisla-, the Democratic legislators would do in education. And it was not much. And that was the answer: "We're not gonna do much(??)." So she just kind of, you know, threw her hands up and said, "Well, do what you can," you know, "And I'll propose 00:54:00these things and then you all fund what you can fund." And, uh, didn't do very much. The, the House Democrats were not willing to vote on a penny on the sales tax or vote a services tax. We talked three or four taxes but, but revenue would've had to been generated through taxes to do some of the things she wanted to do that(??) we wanted to do. I was involved in consulting with her on some of her policies but that, to really be bold and move forward, it would've required us to do what we did in 1990 and the--Bobby and company weren't willing to do that.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Now, although--
NOE: --Bobby Richardson and company; I want to get on the record withthat.
MOYEN: (laughs) Now, by 1990 standards, what happens is, is nothing butin some ways is the 1985 special session that is called for education 00:55:00proved that the 1984 session is essentially a , a blessing that things aren't done because you , the legislators they would've get a lot more out of this special session, is that correct?
NOE: That's correct. In '84, going on '85, um, we, a group of us wewere involved in education and some other things but we decided we wanted to get some things done. The way to do that was to become--I don't know how to say this--we had to put education on the front burner in the media.
NOE: And we used people and they used us, like the Prichard committee,the Prichard group. And, um, it was my goal to have something about education in the newspaper every opportunity, every day, if we could.
NOE: And so, anytime that there was an opportunity for me to saysomething in front of a media person, I said something about education 00:56:00or the lack thereof, the inadequacies or where we could go and how, how we could do that. Um, Martha Layne was involved in doing some of that and then in, in '85 we felt the time was right. I had lunch with her at the mansion and we believed that the summer of '85 would be the right time to have a special session and focused just on education. So, we did that without raising much money and, and at least kept the, kept it on focus. Kept, kept the public aware of what we needed to do. And then we had this--uh, we didn't--there was this group of Council for Better Education, the superintendents who were harping, and, you know, they're not doing it. And we had, we tried to do it in '85 but just couldn't, you know, couldn't equalize, do the equity thing without a lot of money. And we made some changes in the formula, but it just, you know, it wasn't there and, and that group wasn't satisfied. So 00:57:00we said, "Okay, you're not satisfied. I know. What are you gonna do about it?" So, they did file the suit through--and Bert Combs was involved in that, one of my buddies. (both laugh) He was back. And, um, so then that got the ball rolling and we could talk about, I mean, education then was the lightning rod. We were able to get it in the public eye some way but just about every day.
MOYEN: Um-hm. When you're talking about the public eye or the media orthe press obviously the Herald-Leader is an important paper--
NOE: --um-hm, the Courier-Journal--
MOYEN: --second to the Courier-Journal. In Eastern Kentucky andsoutheastern Kentucky what media outlets would you try and target? What?
NOE: We, we would, uh, the A.P
NOE: The Associated Press has stories in every daily around here.00:58:00
NOE: So we would work with the, with the, the AP people. Um, YMT overhere was just, it was, it was fledgling but it was, it was--people in Eastern Kentucky, if you watch the news you watch YMT.
NOE: And so if we were on YMT, people in Eastern Kentucky knew what wasgoing on.
NOE: So I, I was on YMT a lot. Neal Milton is one of my best buddiesand he was, he'd come by the House every morning before he'd go to Hazard. And Tony and I grew up together so, Tony Turner who, who's gone now. Um, so we, you know, and, and they knew how important education would be to Eastern Kentucky and they were, they, they bought in, they said, "We'll, we'll help you get on the news--
NOE: --"as much as possible," and every time I would say something incommittee and showed up in the paper, they'd want to do a story on TV about it.
NOE: So, when I'd get home from Frankfort, you know, we'd, we'd dointerviews.
NOE: And it'd be on at six o'clock and, and the morning news and eleveno'clock.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Now, you had mentioned Bobby Richardson and company00:59:00didn't want a lot of what you and others were pushing.
MOYEN: There is a big change in 1985 with the leadership.
MOYEN: Did you support Don Blandford in, in, in this?
NOE: Yeah, this was the Young Turks--
NOE: --rise to recognition.
MOYEN: Um-hm. And can you tell me about that(??)?
NOE: And I got, I got together with, you know, I, Don and I didnot philosophically agree on most things. He was more Dixiecrat, conservative farmer. You know, he knew Eastern Kentucky was over here but he didn't know much about it. And, uh, wasn't interested in education. He wasn't interested in mental health and health. You know, that, his focus was on, um, thistle(??) eradication or something. You know, I mean just, uh, it was not, we didn't, you know, think the 01:00:00same. And, uh, but then I got to looking at where Bobby was taking us. And his was an egotistical, self-serving kind of leadership.
NOE: And so I , I got with some of the more cognitively-informedlegislators, you know, the Joe Barrows, Harry Moberly, Tom Jones at the time. Uh, Fred Cowan. And, uh, we got to talking about some things.
MOYEN: Did you all have some sort of formal meeting or, or something?
NOE: Yeah, yeah.
NOE: We, we originally, uh, held a conference at Shakertown, uh, but weweren't involved in leadership or anything.
NOE: That, that was just us trying to promote some ideas and on theenvironment and on education and on politics.
NOE: And, uh, so Fred kind of opted out. He went with Bobby. But I01:01:00looked at it, I said, "Look, guys, we can win the leadership with Don Blandford." They were going, Don Blandford(??)"--(laughs)--"Oh, man," but I said, "No, no, look, let's look at it. What do you want to do? How do you want to change Kentucky? What's your interest?" And to the man, they said, "We want, you know, education is the key thing." But Jones was interested in some parks and KET; Barrows was interested in, in some things; and, of course, Moberly education; his wife was a teacher. And Barrows' wife was a teacher. And I said--and they all wanted on
A & R. And I said, "Okay, if we elect Blandford, we say, 'Here is whatwe want. We're gonna elect you, we know where, where the votes are, now we can either go with you, and you can give us these things, or we can go with Bobby, and whether he gives us these things or not, you're out of luck. And, and what's gonna hurt you to have some bright people 01:02:00involved in these roles?'"
NOE: And so we went to him. I called a meeting and we went to him andhe said, "Yes" and we said, "Yes" and he was elected.
MOYEN: So this group--
NOE: --and I nominated Greg for floor leader.
NOE: And so that was part of the deal, I would nominate Greg to getsome, "to get these guys who were Central Kentucky on your side."
NOE: "And then we'll get Blandford and then you got to go along withmaking, let me stay on
A & R, being on the education subcommittee to funnel the money and bechair of the education," and they said, "That's never happened; you can't be chair of a committee and be on A & R." And I said, "Watch me." (both laugh) And we were. You know, we ended; I ended up doing that for several years.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Now, I guess I already know the answer to this questionor else I wouldn't have been listening to you but you were talking 01:03:00about a relatively small group of people but that must've been enough votes to make the difference--
NOE: --it was--
MOYEN: --if, if you voted together otherwise.
NOE: Yeah, yeah, as long as we stuck together, that was the, that wasthe difference.
NOE: Because it was so close, it was so close. And we had Fred for awhile but Fred just philosophically couldn't go with Blandford. They had sparred too much on--Fred Cowan, later became attorney general, on, you know, the different style of issues and the laws and things.
MOYEN: Another important, obviously another important piece oflegislation while, that occurred while Martha Layne Collins was Governor was the incentives package for Toyota.
MOYEN: Did you vote in favor of that?
NOE: I can't remember. I probably did with some reservations. I doknow that I opposed some--vehemently opposed some areas which I got beat up on. Um, the Saturday, funding Saturday schools and, and 01:04:00private schools for the employees. I mean I couldn't see, you know, I philosophically opposed putting public tax dollars into private education.
NOE: And they were doing that essentially and I opposed that but thatdidn't, that had to be part of the package, so.
NOE: But I can't remember if I actually voted yes or no on that. I, Iprobably voted no at some point of the process either in committee --
NOE: --or on the floor on one of the procedural votes or something, butI, I, uh, I just don't remember, uh, whether or not I voted for it.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Outside of those constitutional issues or , or otherissues that you may have noticed do you recall facing any pressure just from your constituents about either, look at , I mean just the, or 01:05:00maybe even , even in your own mind the amount of money?
NOE: Oh yeah, yeah. I talked with Richard Simms who was on theLegislative Research Committee numerous times about the cost-, the benefit of, of that entire package and he , you know, he had done some cost analysis to show that it wouldn't work out. However, it's been okay. I mean, it, it hasn't--
NOE: --proved to be a disaster, and as a matter of fact, it's proved tobe quite positive. So, um, I, um, if I voted against it I've , I've , I've been proven wrong because it's been positive. I can't really tell you whether I voted for it or not.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Let me get into something that I, I think I was gonnaask you at the end but just about regionalism in Kentucky, because being from Central Kentucky and knowing everyone who works at Toyota or whatever and all these businesses and, "Oh, this is the best thing ever."
MOYEN: And yet, when you get to other parts of the state, Kentucky still01:06:00gave all this money and I don't know how much if , if you don't have an attitude of, I'm gonna go to Central Kentucky and take a look and see how , how this has helped our state, how much that helped this region. Are, are there, what other issues really made the, um, I guess, tension or conflict between different regions, um, visible? What other issues, specific--
NOE: --in addition to Toyota?
MOYEN: In addition to Toyota what other, just in a broad sense?
NOE: Well, for the southeastern Kentucky mining area, the coal severancetax was a divisive issue. It was, it was very strong. Um, I mean the folks in Eastern Kentucky--and I, I think of Hoover getting thrown off the floor over the issue--I wasn't there then but it was term before I got there. Um, that was, that was very strong. The, uh, the, uh, 01:07:00let me think of the title of the document--the six-year transportation plan, the six-year plan.
MOYEN: Uh, right.
NOE: That, that didn't treat Eastern Kentucky fairly. Um, um, and then,of course, the Western Kentucky folks had some issues that they felt like they didn't get treated fairly on, on some of the agricultural stuff. Um, but it did seem--and this is perceptual; I, I can't point you to documents--if you back out the Toyota thing, that, you know, that Central Kentucky in the budget process and, and it's, it gets at the theory of propinquity that those who are closest to get the most.
NOE: And Joe Clarke was chair of the A & R House, Mike Moloney waschair of the A & R Senate for years. And they took care of that area. 01:08:00Sometimes to the detriment of the rest of the state. But trying to be a statesman overall, you know, if, if a, uh, a rising tide helps all boats or something to that.
NOE: You know, I can't think of that cliche of how that's, that'sstated but if, um, you know, if one part of Kentucky is doing well, it helps indirectly all of Kentucky but it did seem a little lopsided perceptually--
NOE: --over the, over the several years I was on A & R and could see allthose grants going to Central Kentucky--
NOE: --and, and then later to Northern Kentucky. And that's, that'swhere it was happening, in Northern Kentucky. I mean Northern Kentucky really started booming. Central just kind of ------------(??) done.
NOE: You know, look at Eastern and what Moberly did to focus all thatmoney to Eastern and the Richmond area. I mean it, it was just a little Podunk when I did my master's degree in 1970. Uh, but look at, 01:09:00look at, you go to Richmond now and it's a, it's a small Lexington.
NOE: So that, those kinds of things do help.
NOE: And, uh, it was, it was pretty obvious.
MOYEN: Um-hm. I don't have this written down but am I correct in, inthinking that in 1987 there was a, a special session. This is after Wallace Wilkinson is elected Governor, but before he officially takes office that deals specifically with, I think, workers' comp.
MOYEN: And, and, and--
NOE: --that was those(??) workers' comp and then we had one, but thatwas not till '91 on solid waste.
NOE: But yeah, the workers' comp thing, Kenny Rapier was crucial in thatone and I can't remember, I wasn't all hot-to-trot about workers' comp. I didn't know much about it. I wanted to protect workers as much as possible to keep the corporations from sticking it to them, but I, we 01:10:00weren't very successful in doing that. (laughs) But they were claiming that people, companies were leaving the state because of the, the, um, the assessments--
NOE: --of workers' comp and we had to do something about it. So, theyhad a study commission and made up mainly of the leadership, legislative leadership came up with the bill and I think I voted against it.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Yeah, because you weren't in a position of say, KelseyFriend or Herbie Deskins--
NOE: --no, no, that was--
MOYEN: --who were working with the --
NOE: --yeah, right--
MOYEN: --the black, black lung and a lot of those issues.
NOE: No, unh-uh.
MOYEN: But is that something that your constituents would call oftenabout, or what?
NOE: Oh yeah, it was a major consti-, individual constituent issue that,um, policy-wise I couldn't do anything about. I would try to help them individually as a constituent request but overall policy, uh, you know, the business community had that tied up. They, it was going away the 01:11:00way they wanted it to go. I mean it was, it was well above me. I did not know how to, as an individual legislator or a leader of a small group of legislators, know how to affect the policies in that area. I mean they were just, they were, they were at another level.
NOE: And, you know, you can't deal with--
NOE: --as a citizen legislator.
NOE: There, there are issues that, that are above individuals.
NOE: And, um, you know, Toyota was one. And workers' comp is one. Um,some of the agriculture stuff. Tobacco, that you just, I mean there're people that are on financial levels that control that.
NOE: And you can't do anything about it as an individual, I mean.
NOE: Talk about it--(both laugh)--bring it to somebody's attention and01:12:00they say, "Oh, well, that's just, you know, that's coal mining you can't control that(??)."
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm. Now, in 1987, Wallace Wilkinson in, in somerespects pulls a John Y. Brown in the sense that he's back in the pack and all of a sudden--
[Pause in recording.]
MOYEN: Uh, we're just talking about Wallace Wilkinson and, and his kindof coming out of nowhere to win the election.
MOYEN: To what would you attribute that?
NOE: The lottery. That, uh, that had to be because he was, uh, he wasthe third guy down and--
NOE: --he started promoting that lottery. I was running, um, I wassupporting John Y. Brown but I was also running during that time statewide and, uh.
MOYEN: For sup-, superintendent--
NOE: --Superintendent of Public Instruction, it was still an electiveoffice at the time. And, uh, --excuse me--everywhere I would go, it appeared John Y. Brown was leading the pack and, uh, then the last 01:13:00three weeks or so, I started going to these , you know, I was going to rallies, Dem-, Democrat candidate rallies and my own rallies, and, uh, I started seeing the surge of folks for Wilkinson. And he, he was promoting, and they were talking about the lottery and using the lottery money for education. I was running for superintendent, and so I was, you know, listening to that, of course, and all this some money he was talking about generated by a lottery being generated by a lottery going to education, so I started paying attention. And the last week or so I thought, this guy is the winner, and, uh, sure enough.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm.
NOE: Pulled it off.
MOYEN: When you--
NOE: --and I didn't--(both laugh)
MOYEN: So how did you address the lottery question while you wererunning for--
MOYEN: --your position?
NOE: Um, was that, it's a constitutional issue, uh, would have to go on01:14:00the ballot and if the people of Kentucky supported it, I'm certainly willing to go along with that.
NOE: Pretty much copout kind of answer--(laughs)--but I mean, that's,it, it was realistic. I mean that's what it was and as far as on the ballot, I, I didn't vote for it, uh, to go on the ballot, but once it went on the ballot I voted, voted for the lottery.
MOYEN: Why, why was that?
NOE: The constituency around here, the preachers got together andstarted calling me and saying, you know, "It's a sin and everything," and it seemed, based on that, if I was gonna represent my district.
NOE: --just their feelings on the issue that more people were againstgambling than for gambling--
NOE: --so as, uh, uh, a direct representation of their wishes I votedagainst putting it on the ballot as a constitutional amendment.
MOYEN: Was there anything in your mind or did you have any discussions01:15:00with people around here to the effect of, look, we know people around here, although preachers may have been, be against it people around here are gonna vote for this and then people around here are gonna buy these lottery tickets who are never gonna use this money and it's gonna be more money from Eastern Kentucky leaving with, leaving to go(??) support--
MOYEN: --these wealthier --------(??).
NOE: There were discussion like that. I had a very interestingdiscussion with Joe Beasley an attorney in Harlan about, about that issue. And, uh, that was one of the, one of the things I used, that I was thinking about when I voted against it. That it was, it, uh, was just going to, uh, it was gonna be a tax on the poor people basically.
MOYEN: Um-hm, right.
NOE: And, uh, but once it went on the ballot and I saw the opportunityto, that it was gonna pass anyway and generate more money--at , at 01:16:00the time we thought for education--then I went ahead individually and voted for it. But as, uh, legislator I used both the notion that the, the majority of the constituents were not for gambling, uh, per se to raise money and that it would be a tax, an indirect tax on poor people because they--that's kind of arrogant because, you know, you think people should know how to manage their money just, but they're poor because they don't know how to manage their money. So, um, okay.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit about your decision to runfor the office of superintendent of public instruction and, and what were the problems you saw? What did, what did you campaign on? And, and why did you think you fell short?
NOE: Okay, um-hm. I was extremely interested in education. I sawthat, I was not impressed with the leadership we had in , in the 01:17:00superintendents of public instruction with Graham, McDonald, Raymond Barber and I thought that I could provide some leadership that had hitherto been lacking and, uh, teachers were very strong , strongly interested in me running. The , the KEA organization, the teacher's union, had pretty much, uh, not approach me; I had to go interview with them but, uh, after I interviewed with them and they endorsed me, it was pretty much a done deal as far as, uh, the direction of my candidacy was going. And I developed, uh, uh, a major education reform proposal based on what we didn't do in '85 and what we could do, much of--actually, much of it was a part of KERA.
NOE: Ended up being part of KERA, my platform, my, my program for01:18:00education improvement a major por-, portion of it ended up in KERA.
NOE: And, um, it was extremely comprehensive. And, and was based onresearch and, uh, and knowledge and some innovation, uh, in education in the, uh, academic world, uh, coming from the academic world and not the political world.
MOYEN: Right, right.
NOE: And, uh, I ended up coming up short. I think it was eight-tenth ofa percent that I lost that race. Um, it was, uh, the Wilkinson factor. John Brock had tied his coats(??) on the Wilkinson's wagon.
NOE: I tied mine to John Y. Brown. (laughs) That was some of the,some of it. Another, uh, was that the school boards and the, um, superintendents coalesced against the KEA. It had nothing to do with 01:19:00Roger Noe or John Brock.
NOE: It was above us.
NOE: And they got their politi-, the school board politicians,especially in Eastern Kentucky, if you look at some of the margins in Eastern Kentucky it's phenomenal. I mean he beat me, like in Wolfe County twenty-to-one. Uh, uh, Wolfe, there was four or five counties he just, I mean he laid into me like I wasn't even there. And it was so , you know, county school boards at that time , the , the school board , elected school board members had a following, a constituency and they were able to , to , to, um, activate that constituency and just thumped me good. If I could have just won one county, not--if I'd just lost a couple of counties not so bad, I'd have, I'd have beaten him handedly, but now, he just , Pike County, he just like by ten-to- one or something out in Pike County.
MOYEN: So, in some respects would you say, while your KEA endorsement01:20:00may have helped in more progressive areas--
NOE: --well, Progressive areas and financially they, they did, at thetime they were, you know, there was no soft money regulations or--
NOE: -- ---------(??) PAC(??) money regulations. There were some butnot as strict as today. They helped with my financial campaign. Of course the Bingham's did, too; Mary Bingham was a big supporter.
NOE: She was alive at that time. And then the progressive folks who hadsome money helped me, but.
MOYEN: But that, that may have hurt you because ---------(??)--
NOE: --yeah, that, in answering your question, yeah, I think it didbecause they, they, as I say they coalesced strongly, and, and were, I mean really out to make sure I did not win.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm.
NOE: And I, they were successful in that.
MOYEN: Now, I'm not exactly sure when discussions over the decision tofile suit against the legislature for this inequitable funding occurred 01:21:00but when Wallace Wilkinson won the Governor's race and you lost your race and you're back in the legislature did, did you see, at that time did you have any idea what was coming in terms of educational reform at that, at that point in time?
NOE: Not , no, um, I'd heard , you know, I was at Harvard that summerof '87 , '88, some time and got a call that this council was on the move. And, um, I finished my little program up there and, um, started having meetings more regularly of the committee. Um, and, and I guess illegally. (both laugh) I shouldn't of--I mean, this is not going anywhere. I'm not gonna get in any trouble. Uh, but we started meeting with, with my group and, uh, this, you know, we were just generally what will we do? What, let's set some goals on what we'll do 01:22:00if this lawsuit is successful. How can we implement this and how can we get our agenda implemented at the same time? Uh, well, about two days before the ruling one of my legislative buddies called me, who was a friend of one of the Supreme Court guys. And he said, "Hold on to your hat, buddy. You're not gonna believe it." And told me what was going to happen and I said, "No, you're not--you're, you're"--
NOE: --you, you, that's not, no. They're not gonna just declareeducation unconstitutional in Kentucky. And damned if they didn't(??)! And so we're going, whoa! You know, and then after thinking about it, we thought, Man, what an opportunity. What an opportunity but what, 01:23:00you know what a challenge.
NOE: And, uh, so then we, I did , I pulled out what I'd ran on insuperintendent of public instruction and picked out some , some of the salient things that we needed to do. And, um, by that time leadership was in, in the business of coming up with how are we gonna do this. And let's appoint some committees. And, uh, mainly use a little(??) legislative leadership on these committees and, and Roger and a couple of other people and, uh, make this happen the way we want it to happen.
MOYEN: Right. Um-hm. Before this all happens the, uh, Wilkinson'selection and his ensuing push for gubernatorial succession, including himself, really soured the relationship with the legislature. And you 01:24:00took the, the brunt of a lot of, his criticism, not necessarily over that issue but just in his continual--
NOE: --um-hm, yeah, he didn't like me at all.
MOYEN: Um-hm, why was that? What, or what confrontations did you havewith him? What, what brought that about?
NOE: Gosh, I tried to forget about all that. (Moyen laughs) In the'88 session--and all this was brewing; it hadn't , it hadn't come out yet about , from the, you know, declaring education unconstitutional- -Wilkinson came with, uh--(laughs)--I don't know, he called it an education proposal, but it was , it was crap. It was just, it was window dressing. It was something to, to make him look like he was doing something in education but it was, it was more, it was as much damaging as it was helpful. And I said, "I'm not gonna buy into that." And they laughed and said, "Well, I don't guess you have a choice, do 01:25:00you?" And I said, "Well, we'll see what we can see." And so we had some individual discussions and confrontations. Um, and a, a lot, I had a lot with his staff that they were gonna push this education proposal, if you call it that, um, through the legislature so it passed the Senate. I, no, it didn't; they eliminated it in the House, I guess. Whatever, it came to the House and was assigned to the education committee. Dead on Arrival, baby. (Moyen laughs) So that happened about a month before the session, about this time.
NOE: Uh, eyes of March, kind of thing.
NOE: Well, they kept coming and saying, "When are you gonna hear thisbill?" "I'll get to it when I want to." "When you gonna hear this bill?" Well, I just finally said, "I'm not gonna hear that bill," and they said, "You have to hear that bill." I said, "No, it's not any 01:26:00good. It's not gonna pass. It's not got the votes. I had polled the committee. It won't pass, I'm not hearing." Well, they started working the committee. This all took about another week. So we're coming up on, you know, toward the end of the session and they , they, uh, came to me, his chief of staff, I think, or one of his lieutenants came to me and said, "We've got the votes; you've got to hear that bill." I said, "I've decided I'm not gonna hear that bill." So that, end of that week I hadn't had a committee meeting. And, uh, I went to Gatlinburg. Man, it, it was so hot. I mean I had his folks in Harlan were saying, "You're beat; we're taking care of you, you know, the people who supported , and we got a candidate and you're , you know, you're done in, buddy." I said, "I don't, do what you got to do, I'm"--so I took my family and went to Gatlinburg to keep, you know, phone calls from coming. It was like the headline of the Herald-Leader and, and the 01:27:00Courier. And so, I I got back on Monday, went back to Frankfort and, um, canceled, uh, any education committees for the rest of the session and that was it. And he hated me with a passion from then on. (Moyen laughs) Um, and then I got into it with his wife over something. Oh, and that, and that was just a purely bureaucratic thing. The, the, the education department people wanted one piece of this policy this way and, and the Army(??) woman, uh, Martha, you know, that wanted it this other way, and so I, I just blocked hers and went with the other one and we had the votes to do the department of ed and she got mad and wrote, wrote what a son-of-a-bitch I was in her book, you know. She 01:28:00had a little book she put out. I don't think that eight people read it, but, you know, I , I , I read my part--(Moyen laughs)--that I was an SOB. So, yeah, I , the Wilkinson's and I just really , you know, we , and we wouldn't have been friends if he hadn't been Governor. I mean he's not the type of person I would deal with in my day-to-day life. He just , he was lowlife and I don't deal with lowlifes. In my opinion.
MOYEN: Right, and at the same time that you all have this personalconfrontation over personality pieces of legislation, whatever he's not exactly in the best, uh, light with the rest of the General Assembly either.
NOE: No, he's not. So I , you know, I've got Blandford who, you know,Don, if he wanted to , if he'd been buddies with Wallace, he could've come to me and said, "You like your seat, buddy?" I mean he wasn't above that. He never did do that except in one, on one occasion. And 01:29:00so he , he didn't do that. He said, "You are the chairman, you've made your decision. I support my chairman." And he did that with almost all his folks. He was a good leader even though he got in that trouble, as far as his leadership style and everything, although we didn't see eye-to-eye on most policies. I mean we just didn't think the same. He had a different train of thought on things than I did. He was a good , a good leader. He had good leadership qualities.
MOYEN: Now, there are other interviews in the oral history programdealing with you and what becomes KERA. Those exist, so we've got these detailed accounts of going through KERA.
MOYEN: What I thought might be beneficial for this interview, uh,fourteen years later, I guess, since your last interview, in a, in a couple of paragraphs, in a couple of minutes could you tell me, kind of summarize rather than going through all the different specifics of who you met with, how the legislation developed, what, um, challenges there 01:30:00were, and, and then why it was successful?
NOE: Okay. Um, the legis-, you know, what opened everyone's eyes wasthe , the Supreme Court declaring it unconstitutional. Immediately after that, we had a meeting in Don Blandford's office, um, with our lawyers. I mean we had, they were suing the legislators, so we had a lawyer--I can't remember his name--and we had a conference call. And, you know, essentially said we've lost. Now we have, you know, the charge to do something about it. So, uh, Don and, uh, Joe Wright and myself, Kenny Rapier. Uh, two to three others I can't--
MOYEN:--Eck Rose, ----------(??)
NOE: Eck Rose, Eck Rose--Eck wasn't as, I mean he was involved but Joe01:31:00really took the lead. Joe knew more about it. I mean and, and they, you know, they were good to do that.
NOE: Uh, decided on how to set up the structure and we decided on threecommittees: finance, governance, and curriculum. And who would be on those committees and that the, uh, because--(laughs)--I don't know if this is on an interview anywhere--because the Senate had got so much, I mean, because the House had gotten so much credit , public credit for what little was done in '85, the Senate now would get most of the credit for, uh, KERA. And we didn't know it was gonna become KERA, it would be that big. But that they wanted more credit than, than we were gonna get. They even though we, we could develop anything we wanted to develop, Joe and, and Eck and , and some of them, Mike wanted, wanted the public credit for it. 01:32:00
NOE: So we said, "We were magnanimous," we said, "Okay," you know, "butlet us do our work, and , and give , get you some things." And so, um, I was involved in higher education graduate school at the time and, uh, I had heard about the folks at Ohio, uh, in, uh--I can't think of their names, the consultants they were at Ohio State or Ohio University.
MOYEN: I'm not sure.
NOE: But it was a husband and wife team and we recommended that we getthem and then the fellow from, uh, Maryland--I think he's from Maryland- -he was a consultant and we got him, got him in and a couple more consultants in higher education, where(??) we'd seen in the literature.
NOE: And I recommended some and some other people recommended some and, and LRC folks knew some--you know, we had some real brilliant people in the LRC. They're , they're the unsung heroes in most things, uh, that happen. And, uh, we started having private meetings, again, 01:33:00illegal meetings. Uh, I know Walter Baker was on a committee with me and we met some private things with him and some other , and some LRC folks and started developing some things and, I guess, uh, I, I was appointed to the governance committee because I was so interested in how the school boards in Kentucky had negatively manipulated education in a lot of ways. And I wanted to do something about that. I thought if we could change the direction or the way school boards were operating, especially in Eastern Kentucky that we could positively impact education. So, I got on that one first and then I just kind of monitored the others and, uh, would go to their meetings occasionally and , and have some things to say. And, uh, in caucuses, we would have 01:34:00caucuses on the politics of what we were gonna pass and everything, I was the spokesperson for KERA during that , during that time and was counting votes and it was close, we didn't know if we could win. And then there was a finance committee , I almost forgot about it, the, the--
NOE: --financing it and, uh, my two major interests were governanceand equity.
NOE: And then I had all these other little things that were of interestand a lot of them were in what I'd ran, after-school programs or all, all-day kindergarten, things like that.
MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm.
NOE: That were just kind of add-ons but they ended up in KERA--(laughs)--um, as selling points for people because some, you know, a legislator in Western Kentucky may have been harping on all-day kindergarten and, uh, teacher aides and, you know, and so we got those things involved. 01:35:00Um, so, uh, let me get my direction, the answer to your question back. Um, we put those programs in and most of them got included into KERA and then it was ---------(??) in combatant(??) up on me to get it through the committee, the votes on committee. And, uh, it was looking really good and then David Williams got involved. And he ended up voting for it but the way we did, uh, we, uh, we decided to let him see if we had some ideas and lo and behold he had one or two good ideas that we included in, in KERA at the committee, uh, man, it took all day to get through all the bad things he wanted to do and defeat those. But then we put in some, I think he was interested in adult ed and some I can't, you know, some, some issue like adult ed or 01:36:00maybe in early childhood ed, one or the other. We got that included and he ended up vote for it. The, the main thing with KERA wasn't the policies; people seemed to warm up to most of those policies except for that right-wing outfit. That said it was inspired by the devil. But, um, the, uh, I can't remember that group but it was that real conservative group of people that were always against a lot of anything that was progressive. Uh, the tax was the, the hang-up. And, uh, Blandford helped a lot with that. He had bought into KERA back after we lost and saw the opportunity to really do something big. He, he bought into it. And, uh, it had gotten to the, um, point where we didn't know if it would pass or not and Don went around talking to 01:37:00people and others of us, you know, tried to convince some folks. And, uh, Don made the, Don Blandford made the decision to not have any discussion. He, when he got the votes we were gonna vote. Nobody is gonna get talked out of it. (laughs) So that's what occurred on the day we voted. Don went around to the little cubicles in the basement of the, said, "We're gonna vote today. No discussion. This is , you're still voting the way you're gonna vote, right?" And , and, uh, I remember one legislator who said, "I'm not voting that way unless I get to do this and this and this." Good, he was a good friend of mine at that time and Don went to talk to him and he came back over and I said, "Well, what happened?" He said, "I'm gonna vote the way I said I was gonna vote and keep my mouth shut." He said, "I've been talked to." (both laugh) So, that again, that was a, a, I guess a, a tribute to his skill as a leader to, you know, when the time's tough, you know, you, 01:38:00you're, you're gonna do this. So, my involvement as committee chair of, of the education committee and as a member of the policy committees that developed KERA, uh, ended up being, uh, I mean my role ended up being quite intensive. I mean in, uh--
MOYEN: --and substantial(??)--
NOE: --and substantial and I, I guess some people have introduced meas one of the architects, because there were a lot of people who had pieces and and say-so. I guess one of the things that I helped do, again, was to keep it on the front burner. Every time that there was some discussion I talked about education reform and what we can do and how we could do(??) it and the Prichard committee was doing that and we had a lot of support. We had some conferences and meetings around the state and generated the support for the legislators who had to vote for 01:39:00the tax didn't feel so uncomfortable with it.
NOE: It ended up, I won't say the tax alone but it, it ended upattributing to my defeat and to Nelson Allen's defeat because of the anti-tax sentiments that pervades most of the country right now.
MOYEN: Right. Sure, um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit about, um,now, who ended up defeating you?
NOE: Uh, his name is Rick, Rick Fox. F-O-X
MOYEN: Um-hm, okay.
NOE: He lives in Harlan. He was a Republican.
MOYEN: And, and did he --
NOE: --and they recruited him to change from Democrat so he could runagainst me because they couldn't beat me with a, a Democrat.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Now, do you say that figured he was a Democrat but hereally had Republican principles or did he actually?
NOE: He actually changed.
NOE: He, he was a Republican.
MOYEN: Okay. Okay.
NOE: Um-hm, yeah.
MOYEN: All right. Um, and during that campaign did you know right offafter passing all this, that this was gonna be a challenge? 01:40:00
NOE: I did. I knew that and, you know, I'd, I'd accepted that. Ithought I would get beat that first time but no candidate, worthy a candidate came forward--
NOE: --and that(??), you know, right after, immediately, they hadn'thad time to--the opposition didn't have time to find a good candidate immediately. But I knew, you know, and I'd, I'd do it again for what we did it's still, uh, you know, the reality of it is it, it didn't happen the way I would have liked to have seen it, ten years later or twelve years later or fourteen years later.
NOE: You know, it's not, it's not happened. Uh, it's, it's not beenas effective as I thought it would be. But that's just my idealism, I guess, I thought it'd be better.
MOYEN: If, if you were in charge today of--
NOE: --of what? (both laugh)
MOYEN: Of, of reviewing and revising this legislation, what would you01:41:00say would be the areas that you would go back to and say, "This hasn't done what we wanted it to," or what areas would you say, "See it works; we knew it."
NOE: Um-hm. Uh, okay, um, I would go back to management and look, um,at a greater accountability in the management role that superintendents have. Uh, I don't think they have managed that influx of new money effectively. I think, uh, superintendents and boards have, uh, spent a lot of that additional seat money that they got per-pupil spending on perks and things that really didn't focus on learning. Learning is what's all about. Uh, teaching and learning. And, uh, I probably, 01:42:00if I could just take, take my policy and implement, it would change the entire school board structure, the way that the school boards run schools and have a different, different way of doing that, different management structure, uh, and a greater accountability of that management. Um, I think what did work and, and it just wasn't managed well was, uh, we've seen , we did see initially the equity thing work but now I'm hearing and reading that superintendents are still not satisfied. There is still, there's still some inequitable distribution of funds. Um, the, um, the add-on programs by-and-large have been successful to students. We've seen students improve. Uh, guess what, what we haven't seen that I had hoped we'd seen was more drastic 01:43:00improvement on, of the teaching-learning activities but it may just be , you know, I've studied ed pysch. It just may be a slower process than what I wanted it to be.
NOE: And it is, you know. I know academically it is--
NOE: --but I wanted it to happen and we've had a generation now ofstudents who started in the first grade and gone all the way through. Um, curriculum wise I'm , I'm not so sure that the, uh, the change of the curriculum the way we did it, uh, less structured, more portfolio, uh, has been as effective as, as the consultants and the academicians thought it would be. It was more of an experiment with, with the way they, the students were learning.
NOE: And I think more of the, of the old, the , the traditionalphilosophy, the, the John Dewey, the , the Blume(??), those, those 01:44:00folks, uh, may, may have been what we needed to stay with.
NOE: And the state, the state legislature probably needed to stay out ofgetting that deep into teaching-learning.
NOE: And, and had let, and should've let the academicians and educatorscome up with, given them an over, a broad structure but let them , let them do the-- I don't think the , the testing program has been as effective as everyone thought it was going to be.
NOE: We probably should've stayed more with the national norms ratherthan the local norms.
NOE: But, uh, we've added value to Kentucky. We've added value to thestudents and, and the education system through KERA. And I think it was worth it and I'd do it again. I'd like to be able to manipulate a few little things that we talked about. But, uh, especially the governance school board thing I mean, but I think financing it was 01:45:00good. I think most of the curriculum and add-on things were good except we delved too, we went too deep in as, in as legislators saying what, what they should've done. We should've backed off some of that. But otherwise it's, uh, I would deem it a success.
NOE: I wouldn't give it a ten--
NOE: --but I'd give it a seven.
MOYEN: Um-hm. After your defeat, have you been able to step backand say, with all that happened with BOPTROT with , although well- intentioned and still an issue, the health care reform and with just the general tone in Frankfort--although that sounds like a commercial general tone in Frankfort--that it was a blessing in some respect? I mean, looking back do you, did you really wish you were still there or were you able to say maybe this was?
NOE: Uh, the first couple, three years I, I wished I was still there.01:46:00
NOE: But now I don't have any interest in making the effort, taking thetime, spending the money to go back, uh, and , and be in the environment that currently exist in , in Frankfort. It wasn't as contentious when I was there. It was, even the Republicans got along with the Democrats a lot, a lot better. I mean we, we would fight and scratch on the floor over an issue but then we'd go to, uh, a reception and, you know, have, hang out, you know. Have a, have a good time. I actually used to shoot pool with David Williams, you know, in the evenings and now I think it's, uh, it's just, uh, it's personal; it's not policy. And, uh, it's just not, it wouldn't be any fun. And it was fun when I was there. And, and I could see real change and think I was helping-- 01:47:00
NOE: --be a part of that and, uh, now I just don't know if that wouldbe the case. I'm not, you know, I'm not willing to put the time, money, and effort in to, to try to do that again. But yeah, it hurt, it hurt for a while; it stung. It was a really hard pill to swallow, um, especially knowing that, you know, a lot of folks that I thought I had helped and done things for went, you know, did(??) in the opposite direction--
NOE: And, uh, that was surprising. I mean it was a, it was a, a growingexperience to know people, you know, aren't loyal.
NOE: You know, you can help them and they'll still, you know, stick itto you. You know, and I guess I was forty years old before I bought into the concept that the world's not fair. (both laugh) I thought there was fairness, you know, I thought, uh, that things were(??) 01:48:00supposed to be fair.
NOE: You know, but.
MOYEN: Looking back what would you say were , were probably the bestmoments , either moment, events, or if there're a few of them that stick out in your mind and then what were probably the worst or the most difficult things about being in Frankfort?
NOE: Oh, some of the best times were when, uh, major pieces oflegislation like KERA would, would go through. Things that you'd spent hours and hours and days and months working on and then that, to reach fruition was just, uh, overwhelming. And, uh, when, when, being involved in the legislation that you knew would make a difference somewhere, sometime, uh, in people's lives and in organizations.
NOE: Uh, that was very rewarding. I mean it was rewarding. Alsorewarding, uh, was things that made you, made me feel good was being 01:49:00the first to know almost anything being(??) in the government. I mean I was the first to know things, the things that were going on and, uh, you were the first to know, you didn't pick it up secondarily through the paper, you know. You know(??), firsthand. And, uh, affecting change firsthand was, was very exciting and very rewarding.
NOE: Uh, some of the worst days I experienced was much of thecontentiousness with the, the Wilkinson folks. That was not fun to , you know, to go up there and have to put up with their nay-saying and their yapping at you and threatening to , to, "We'll beat you in elections," and things like that. Um, other bad times, um, I was a little bit bitter after I lost the statewide election and I didn't handle that first part of that session well as a chair. I used my 01:50:00bitterness, convert it into some revenge, and some folks that I knew had been against me didn't, you know, I, I didn't pay attention to them. I mean, I didn't help them if they needed help. And, and, and that, that was selfish and, and mean of me because some of the, some of the things, uh, that were brought to me by people who were against me might've been good policy. And I wouldn't even look at it.
NOE: I looked at it, you were against me; I'm not even gonna read that.And I got over that after a month or so, but it was a bad time for me.
NOE: And, and I feel bad that, that I did. And I understand that I didand now just have to live with it.
NOE: But I remember one, one committee meeting, uh, it was onprofessional standards for, for teachers. It was my bill; I was establishing a professional standards board to license teachers. 01:51:00
NOE: To bring the profession up.
NOE: And John Brock was against it and Clay Parks was against it. Claywas the chair of the state board of education and John had just been elected superintendent, so they came to speak against it. Well, I had Cohen(??) from Washington speaking for it and some other folks and had the votes to pass it. I mean, I already had the votes to pass it. And, uh, I wouldn't even let John speak. He did, he wanted to, he wanted to testify on the record against it and I didn't recognize him. And he was the superintendent of public instruction. That was, that was petty of me, I mean it was just, but I kind of liked it(??). (both laugh) But, you know, that's, that was a bad moment for me, but.
MOYEN: Um-hm. How would you describe your overall time that you got toserve? If, if someone said so what?
NOE: That it(??) was wonderful, it was, it was great. It was a lifetime01:52:00experience that, uh, I'd certainly do again, uh, if, if I had an opportunity to start where I did and go with it. I just, I, I don't want start from now. I mean, I've done it. It was rewarding and I'm glad I did. And it was, it was a, uh, it's a good part of, of my life, a good part. It was a good time to be in the legislature and be a Kentuckian. And, and overall it was 99 percent positive with the 1 percent negative that I've mentioned.
MOYEN: Is, is there anything, um, that I failed to raise that youweren't, had thought I, that we should talk about this?
NOE: Well, you've not mentioned much about BOPTROT and that time. Ialways thought it was funny that those of us on the floor knew when a dirty bill was on the floor. We referred, people would whisper, "That's a money bill, you know, that's a money bill." And there, 01:53:00we knew that certain people would, would take money from different, different people --
NOE: And they knew, those, those people who were given out that moneyknew who not to approach and who to approach.
MOYEN: How--let me ask you this--how long had that been, been going on?
NOE: Oh, it must've been going on forever because it's either my firstor second session an old boy from Williamsburg by the name of Elmer Patrick was a legislator. And he was, he would bring a tape recorder and put it in his pocket and try to tape people trying to bribe him. He never did really catch anybody and he got, he got caught trying to tape some, somebody that, uh, was offended by it, someone in human resources or something and he really took some hard licks over being unethical. 01:54:00
NOE: And being, uh, doing, you know, doing the wrong thing.
NOE: But that was in '80, '78 or '80 when Elmer was trying to, to catchsomebody, uh, offering bribes.
NOE: So I guess it went on.
MOYEN: Um-hm. So, when I've interviewed other legislators and askedthem about BOPTROT I've typically asked, "Did you know this was going on?" And they say, "Well, maybe I thought of it, but no, you know, I really didn't know." That's probably, in your estimation, I mean you can't speak of the --------(??) obviously--
MOYEN: --what everybody else thinks(??), probably not true, people knew---------(??)--------
NOE: I think people knew, they knew in the section back in the backwhere I was. (both laugh) Those, those around there and, uh, there may have been some who didn't know.
NOE: I don't know who, you know, who you've interviewed, what type oflegislator--
NOE: --you've interviewed but, um, it was, I think people generally knew01:55:00when there was something not right--
NOE: --going on. I guess we were guilty, those of us who knew that, ofjust looking at our shoeshine to see how bright our shoes were shining, you know, but I didn't, after BOPTROT actually came out and all the players were named and the amounts and the, I didn't know who all the--
NOE: --was bribed until the end. But, you know, I can, I could see, youknow, I remember the story Kenny Rapier tells about McBee sticking two hundred dollars in his pocket and said, you know, "Go and have dinner," or something. Um, I'm sure that, that could happen.
NOE: And I'm, I'm sure it did happen and to other people. Kenny gaveit back but I'm sure other people said, "Hmm," you know, "we've got ------------(??)-----------, you know --(laughs)-- that kind of thing. But, yeah, it was, that was a, a very disappointing time to be in 01:56:00the legislature during that time to, to see people you, for me to see people I, I respected as a leader like Don having, you know, been involved in that because, because it was easy enough I think to have done it legally and still have money in your campaign fund.
NOE: You know, and, and do it legally. You , you could do it aboveboard on the record and publicly --one of the things that I think helped me as a legislator and helped my whole experience was I perceived my role as a , as a public person and in a fish bowl and I wasn't afraid to talk to the press. I'd tell, you know, anything the media wanted to know that I knew, I shared it with them if it was public policy, other than those private KERA meetings we'd have and little, little, they were "illegal" in terms of talking about public 01:57:00policy with more than two people at the time the legislators at, at the time but that's going ---------(??).
NOE: But otherwise, uh, this is, that was my role as a public person to,to represent the public and I, I stayed with that and I think it was beneficial to everyone.
[Pause in recording.]
MOYEN: Let me ask you this question: by the time Joe Clarke is electedspeaker and they start working on the ethics legislation and you're not there.
NOE: I'm, I'm, I'd left by then. I supported Joe's election--
NOE: --because I thought it was time for, I mean, that dras-, drastic ofchange from, um, Blandford. You know, they needed to make that change and I'm, I'm on record of saying that. I'm sure I was interviewed. Because everyone thought because Joe and I disagreed so much on his 01:58:00attitude towards Eastern Kentucky that I would not support him for anything, but I thought the time was right for his candidacy at that time.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Um, when the ethics legislation did pass, when you hadopportunities to read about it, look at it, talk with people that you knew--
MOYEN: --although you weren't there(??), do you feel like it wasvaluable? I mean, a, a lot of people seem to suggest what has changed and--
MOYEN: --besides making legislators more nervous about drinking a cup ofcoffee, or whatever.
NOE: Yeah, right. No, I talked--see, I still, I still have friendsthat I correspond with and talk with in the legislature. Joe Barrows' being one of them. And, uh, I was still getting together with some of my legislative buddies in '93, '94, '95 on occasion. And as a matter 01:59:00of fact, Joe Barrows and Tom Jones and I used to go pheasant hunting in North Dakota , South Dakota every November up until just a year or two ago when the farm was sold. and we would , you know, during that ethics time Joe and I would share--(laughs)--he would share with me how the , you know, the stupidity of some of that, um, coffee, sandwich, you know, whatever, and that, uh, it's not really made a difference in that if , people who want to be dishonest can still be dishonest. And, uh, the consequences may be a little more than they were before but that's, that legislation did not keep dishonest people from being dishonest.
MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me just briefly what you've done since yourtime in the legislature? What have you focused on?
NOE: Okay, I focused, uh, after I left the legislature, I was aprofessor of psychology during the legislature time and, um, after 02:00:00I left the, uh, academic dean, vice president's job came opened up, applied for that. Um, I became academic dean here, Dean of Academic Affairs at Southeast Community College. Then in '96, '96-'97, I was asked to go to Ashland to serve as interim president of Ashland Community College. So I went to Ashland. I was up there a year and they asked to stay on as permanent, the committee did. And I , I'm from Harlan and as much as I liked to have been a president at Ashland if it had been located in Eastern, southeastern Kentucky, I would've taken the position but I did not take that position. I don't truly regret it. I, I, you know, I still like to do that but I can't do it in Ashland. Well, about three months after I got back here, uh, 02:01:00they called from Lexington, UK wanted me to go to Maysville as interim president, so I went to Maysville Community College and was interim president at Maysville Community College through '98-'99, I guess. And decided to come back to Harlan. I was coming home on weekends, of course, as president. and, uh, came back here and, uh, have been , still serving as academic dean, uh, while doing some other things. I've taken, you know, interest, I build furniture in the evenings and on weekends and make bedroom suits, and.
NOE: Dressers and mirrors and whatever as a hobby so I found somethingother than politics to be interested in. Uh, and will continue in an academic career. Um, I'm a licensed clinical counselor; I did private 02:02:00practice for a while--
NOE: --in the, well, from '92 on to '98 or something, when the lastworkers' comp thing passed. That put me out of business pretty much. I was doing mainly workers' comp evaluations for work- , for attorneys who were involved in doing the psychological and vocational evaluations for workers' comp cases.
NOE: And, uh, uh, Paul Patton put me out of business on that one. So,I'm not doing any private practice but I still can if I want to some, some time. And, uh, I'm still interested in politics. Read the paper every day, interested in the legislature. I don't go up there much but, uh, just as a Kentuckian interested in what's going on in, in the lives of Kentucky and Kentuckians. Um, one of my goals is to go back 02:03:00to teaching psychology a year from now or a year and a half from now and at that time I'll have more free time as an instructor, a professor to maybe delve more into civic and political issues.
NOE: And I , I did get involved quite heavily in some local issues,mountaintop removal, the Black Mountain and the Pine Mountain Settlement School when they were gonna mine those areas. I was actively involved in helping to prevent that, testified at some of the hearings against that process and will again if they, if they continue to do that.
MOYEN: Well, I thank you for your time.
NOE: Well, thank you for coming over and, uh, maybe some other time wecan talk again.
MOYEN: That'd be great.02:04:00
NOE: All right.
[End of interview.]