Kentucky Press News Service

Governor says he could support medical marijuana

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Speaking in Stanford Tuesday, Gov. Matt Bevin said he could support a medical marijuana bill depending on the measure's language. Bevin told the audience that his teen-age nephew died of cancer and would have benefitted from medical marijuana's pain relief properties. His nephew was 14 and died in 2016. 2019-02-13T13:12:36-05:00

Circuit judge hears school shooting lawsuits

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
A pair of civil lawsuits connected to a deadly school shooting last year in Marshall County were heard for the first time in a courtroom Tuesday. The suits were filed by families of both of the students who died in the Jan. 23, 2018, incident at Marshall County High School in Draffenville, as well as several students who received injuries. The main item of business Tuesday was for Marshall Circuit Judge James T. Jameson to hear motions in the case. He did not set a new date. 2019-02-13T13:06:39-05:00

Prosecutor to seek death penalty in triple homicide

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Commonwealth's Attorney Bruce Kuegel said Tuesday that he will seek the death penalty for Arnett B. Baines, who was indicted last week for murder in the shooting deaths of Jay Michael Sowders, Robert D. Smith and Christopher Carie, and an assault on Carmen Vanegas. But Kuegel said he is not seeking the ultimate penalty "at this time" for Cylar L. Shemwell, 31, who was also indicted on the same charges. Police said earlier that Baines, 30, is believed to have shot each of the three men in the head "execution-style." 2019-02-13T13:00:42-05:00

Mitch McConnell supports tentative deal to avoid government shutdown

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave the thumbs up to a tentative deal to avoid another federal government shutdown a day after trashing Democrats for their role in the negotiations. But the Kentucky Republican’s approval could be blunted by President Donald Trump, who said Tuesday that he isn’t pleased with the agreement. 2019-02-13T12:57:35-05:00

Ohio State student's abduction ends in Oldham County shooting. What we know

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
A student snatched Monday from a branch campus of Ohio State University and her suspected abductor were killed after a police chase ended in an Interstate 71 shooting in Oldham County, police said Tuesday. Skylar Williams, a 20-year-old student of Ohio State’s Mansfield branch campus about 275 miles north of Louisville, and Ty’rell Pounds, 24, died after being shot late Monday afternoon. Both were from Mansfield, which is between Columbus and Cleveland. Law enforcement and Ohio State officials said Williams had been abducted from campus late Monday morning. Pounds was named as a suspect. 2019-02-13T12:46:14-05:00

A Kentucky coal plant is too expensive but Trump wants to keep it open

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
The president has joined Kentucky's governor and the state's senators in trying to pressure the Tennessee Valley Authority to keep a 49-year-old coal-fired power plant operating, even though the nation's largest public electric utility has concluded that the plant is unreliable, no longer needed and too expensive to repair and operate. Shutting Muhlenberg County's Paradise Fossil Plant down would avoid customers having to pay for the aging plant's frequent repairs. It also would reduce emissions that cause lung-damaging smog by as much as 11.5 percent across TVA's seven-state system, and cut its greenhouse gas emissions by more than 4 percent, the federally owned utility said in an assessment released Monday. 2019-02-13T12:38:52-05:00

State probation and parole officers to receive 12 percent raise

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
In an effort to stem the high turnover rate of parole and probation officers, the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet has approved a plan to give all of its officers and supervisors a 12 percent raise. Insider Louisville obtained a letter sent last Monday to all probation and parole officers and supervisors from Jonathan Hall — the director of the division of probation and parole within the Kentucky Department of Corrections — informing them of the salary bump. 2019-02-13T12:37:26-05:00

Kentucky parents could opt kids out of state testing under new legislation

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Kentucky parents could opt for their kids not to take state tests starting next year if legislation proposed by two Louisville representatives passes. House Bill 331, sponsored by Jefferson County Republicans Rep. Jason Nemes and Rep. David Osborne, would let parents pull their students out of “high-stakes” state tests like KPREP, and districts would be required to notify parents of the opt-out option, plus have policies in place should a parent choose to go that route. 2019-02-13T12:33:50-05:00

Top senator pushing bill to strip Grimes of her power over Kentucky’s elections board

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
A top Republican lawmaker is proposing legislation that would strip embattled Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes of her authority over the Kentucky State Board of Elections. Senate Majority Leader Damon Thayer, R-Georgetown, said he will introduce a committee substitute Wednesday to Senate Bill 34 that would make the secretary of state a symbolic, non-voting member of the elections board, stripping her of any day-to-day authority over the group. It also would block Grimes and others in her office from accessing to the state’s voter registration database. 2019-02-13T12:26:35-05:00

Coal employment ‘ain’t like it once was.’ Number of jobs in Kentucky hits new low.

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
The number of coal jobs in Kentucky sank to a new low in 2018, according to a state report. Coal employment varies from month to month, but the average for the entire year was 6,409, according to the state Energy and Environment Cabinet. There has been an increase in coal jobs nationwide since Trump took office, from 50,800 in January 2017 to a preliminary figure of 52,700 in January 2019, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Kentucky has not had sustained growth in coal jobs, however, in part because the state doesn’t have as much metallurgical coal, used in steelmaking, as neighboring West Virginia. 2019-02-13T12:17:26-05:00

'Outstanding Farmer' basically started from the ground up and is still learning

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
“I just knew when I was kid that farming was what I wanted to do,” says Jason Wade, shrugging. “I loved being outside and being around equipment and helping my neighbor. The cattle, the tobacco, the hay. When we were kids we didn’t have cellphones or internet. I didn’t care much about sports at all. I would have rather been with my neighbors harvesting crops and being around the cattle and equipment. I love trying to grow crops and make them the best they are.” Last month, Wade was named “Outstanding Farmer” by the Marion County Chamber of Commerce. His wife, Tara, knew he was receiving the award, and wanted to surprise him. 2019-02-13T12:06:05-05:00

New distillery buys Lebanon property for more than $2 million

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Spirits-maker Diageo has officially bought property from the Marion County Industrial Foundation for more than $2 million. The proposed facility will consist of a distillery, dry house and warehousing in Lebanon with the capability to distill a variety of Diageo bourbon and American whiskey brands. The company anticipates the creation of 30 new full-time jobs. 2019-02-13T12:01:25-05:00

Bomb squad, ATF called when police find live blasting caps during drug bust

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
The state police bomb squad and a number of federal ATF agents were called to Lawrenceburg on Monday after police found blasting caps in a vehicle while making a drug bust. “This is very dangerous stuff,” said Det. Jeremy Cornish of the Lawrenceburg Police Department. “We were exposed to some significant danger, because these items can be used as a mechanism for pipe bombs and other explosive devices. “They can be set off just by static from a carpet.” 2019-02-13T11:51:18-05:00

Fort Knox focusing on civilian workforce development, recruitment efforts

February 13, 2019 - 2:35pm
Fort Knox is a gem of the local economy and its new Gem­stone program is aimed at building greater skills among its civilian workforce, Jim Iacocca says. Iacocca, CEO of the Knox Regional Development Alliance, updated area business leaders Tuesday on several recent developments at Fort Knox during the monthly meeting of the Radcliff Small Business Alliance. He said the U.S. Army Human Re­sources Command headquartered on post recently created the Gemstone program, which is an in-house professional development program intended to improve the Army civilian workforce. 2019-02-13T11:41:51-05:00

Public lands bill passes without Paul’s forest amendments

February 13, 2019 - 11:35am
The U.S. Senate approved a bill Tuesday to protect more than 1 million acres of new wilderness, expand several national parks and create five new national monuments. The public lands bill also reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund that supports conservation and outdoor recreation projects with federal royalties from offshore oil and gas drilling, creates 2,600 miles of new federal trails and withdraws 370,000 acres of land from mineral development in the West, according to The Associated Press. However, missing from this bill was legislation proposed by U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. 2019-02-13T11:30:31-05:00

Kafoglis remembered as being in politics 'for right reasons'

February 13, 2019 - 11:35am
The man who succeeded Nicholas Z. “Nick” Kafoglis in the Kentucky House of Representatives said Monday that Kafoglis was in public service “for the right reasons.” Jody Richards, who retired in December after 43 years in the House, talked about his friendship and professional relationship with Kafoglis, a longtime Bowling Green physician who died Saturday in Connecticut at age 89. “I thought he was one of the finest people I’ve ever known,” Richards said about his fellow Democrat. “He was an outstanding legislator, the kind of person you’d like representing you.” 2019-02-13T11:26:37-05:00

Elderly man rescued from woods

February 13, 2019 - 11:35am
An elderly Indiana man who had been missing for hours was rescued from the cold Friday morning thanks to the efforts of a passerby who saw something and reported it, and the first responders who got the victim out alive. Carl Keown was rescued after the lights of his car were spotted in some Nelson County woods from the road on U.S. 31E overnight Thursday. 2019-02-13T11:19:29-05:00

Museum acknowledges black Americans and their contributions to shaping this country

February 12, 2019 - 2:35pm
Dedi­cated to the achievements of African-Americans locally and nationally, the Emma Reno Connor Black History Gallery in Eliza­bethtown largely is based on the devotion of one person. But it’s continued impact and legacy now rests in the hands of a local service organization. The Fort Knox alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta sorority sees to it that each February the gallery is open on Saturdays to recognize Black History Month. 2019-02-12T13:34:06-05:00

A bigger problem than just bail reform

February 12, 2019 - 2:35pm
As Kentucky’s legislature discusses the possibility of bail reform this year, it’s clear there are people with legitimate concerns on both sides of the issue. It’s also clear that the state and the entire nation face a much bigger problem. Our criminal justice system is not built to solve the problems we are asking it to solve today. 2019-02-12T13:32:00-05:00

Kentucky Southern Baptist leaders among hundreds accused of sex abuse

February 12, 2019 - 2:35pm
Six Kentucky men are among roughly 380 Southern Baptist church preachers and volunteers accused of sexual abuse and misconduct over the past 20 years, two newspapers have reported. The Kentuckians named include a pastor, an associate pastor and four youth ministers, according to a database compiled by the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News. There are 2,400 Southern Baptist churches in Kentucky. 2019-02-12T13:19:02-05:00

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