April 16, 2014

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Fight brewing over state's minimum wage

By Scott Wartman, The Kentucky Enquirer

As the General Assembly began its session last Tuesday, Republicans and Democrats appeared poised to spar on raising the minimum wage in Kentucky.

Speaker of the House Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, has made raising the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10 the top priority in the House this session, which will last until April 15.

Stumbo said that 600,000 Kentuckians work in minimum-wage jobs. The Legislature last raised the minimum wage in 2007.

Energy efficiency can reduce home heating costs

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) says consumers can limit the impact on their home heating bills by taking steps to reduce energy consumption.
“As temperatures plummet, energy usage and home heating bills inevitably rise,” PSC Chairman David Armstrong said. “But a few simple steps can help limit the effect.”

Since weather - not price - is the dominant factor in determining energy usage, the best weapon consumers have to manage their energy costs is to take steps to reduce consumption, he said. Those measures can be as simple as turning down the thermostat a few degrees, Armstrong said.

Kentucky highway fatalities decline in 2013

Preliminary figures indicate a 64-year low

Highway fatalities in Kentucky declined in 2013 to their lowest level in 64 years.

Kentucky Office of Highway Safety (KOHS) preliminary figures indicate 635 people lost their lives on Kentucky roadways during the year, down from 746 in 2012. It was the lowest total since 1949, when 573 fatalities were recorded.

Be sure to apply for Earned Income Tax Credits

Kentucky Treasurer Todd Hollenbach is encouraging more Kentuckians to apply for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a refundable federal tax credit for low and middle income working individuals and families.

Legislative perspective on Kentucky General Assembly

Just as the cold snap stretched across much of the United States early last week, things began heating up in the Capitol as the General Assembly returned to begin the 2014 Regular Session.

It promises to be a busy 60 working days, and since it is an even-numbered year, our top priority will be adopting a budget to run state government for the next two years.

Profile of a Back Operation

When I withdrew from writing several weeks past, I knew that I was going to have a major surgery on my back and that I would be under high dosage of pain medication for several weeks. Both of these have proven true, but I have missed writing and offer my experience with this common ailment among us oldies and others, not for sympathy, but to provide one man’s experience as I battle to maintain an upright position. If you have back problems, especially if you are an oldie, I think you will find my experience enlightening.

“A Mouse In The House”

Since childhood, I have always had a fear of snakes and rats. My fear could have been caused by some innocent adult who was trying to make me behave by telling me if I left the house I probably would be bitten by a large rat or snake. Even now, when I see a snake or rat on TV, a chill begins at my tailbone and ends at the nape of my neck.

Rats and mice were plentiful in the homes during the 50s. The large number had nothing to do with bad housekeeping or poor sanitation, but probably caused by the lack of any good pesticides and the old open houses. Also, farmers fed cattle and horses, and always had a crib full of corn, which rats loved.

KSP urges parents to be aware of internet predators

The Kentucky State Police used their latest episode of KSP-TV to warn parents about the dangers of Internet predators. The video shares an inside look at the agency’s Electronic Crimes Branch and the intricate work that takes place to protect children from online predators.

KSP checkpoints for January
The Amish Cook shares recipe for ranch snack mix

By Lovina Eicher

Today is laundry day again. I also have dough rising for bread and cinnamon rolls. I made two batches of cinnamon rolls yesterday. Daughter Susan made all the frosting for me for the rolls. She is always the one I get to do that for me.

The last rolls came out of the oven around 8 or 9 p.m.  So I had to wait to frost them until they were cooled off enough. After the frosting was set enough I put them in Ziploc bags.