Speaking to reporters at her office Monday morning, Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis announced she would not interfere with the issuance of marriage licenses from her office despite continued objections to a federal judge’s order requiring her to provide the licenses.

Davis’ deputy clerk, Brian Mason, said he would continue issuing licenses, which Davis stopped doing in June, after the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. Davis, an Apostolic Christian, has claimed issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples violates her religious beliefs.

Mason and other deputies resumed issuing the licenses last week.

A Lexington listener emailed us, asking to remain anonymous.  He begins by saying, “Thanks for the rush hour traffic reports.”  He then points out that we sometimes mispronounce one of the boulevards in Lexington, saying,  “Aristides is pronounced with the accent on the second “i,” which is a “long” “i,” as in Aphrodite, instead of like Euripides.”  

Aristides, the horse, won the first Kentucky Derby in 1875.

Although the peak fireworks season has come and gone, Lexington city leaders are considering changes in liability insurance levels for non-city displays.  A council committee last week looked into lowering the liability requirement from $5 million to $2 million for neighborhood or club shows.  Council member Amanda Mays-Bledsoe supports a change in the policy. She said they are “trying to make it easier and feasible and financially sustainable for other nonprofits and churches or homeowners associations and neighborhoods to sponsor an event show without sponsoring a $5,000,000 program.”

Yearling Sale Opens at Keeneland With an Eye on Breeders Cup

Sep 14, 2015

Keeneland’s Yearling Sale is regarded as the primary barometer of the state of the Thoroughbred Industry.  The annual two week auction begins Monday.

Big name trainers like Bob Baffert and Todd Pletcher will be eyeing yearlings.  Keeneland’s Amy Gregory says the sale comes as a preview to October’s Breeders Cup.  “You see a lot of horses that were sold at Keeneland during the September sales in particular, sold as yearlings, that are now gonna race in the Breeders Cup when it comes back to Keeneland this fall,” said Gregory.

Noah Day

In light of recent events related to the issuance of marriage licenses for same-sex couples, separation of church and state has been on the minds of many Kentuckians. On this week's show, we'll discuss Separation of Church and State.


Dan Bennett, assistant professor of political science at Eastern Kentucky University, whose research focuses on the intersection of politics, law, and religion in the United States.

Rich Copley: Oktoberfest, ScareFest, Roots & Heritage, and Madeline

Sep 11, 2015

It's time for our weekly chat with Rich Copley of the Lexington Herald Leader for a look at this weekend's arts and cultural events.

Rich tells WEKU's Jonese Franklin although it is still September, it's time for Oktoberfest.

UK Student Faces Charge Related to Drone Crash at Football Stadium

Sep 11, 2015
University of Kentucky


A 24 year old law student at the University of Kentucky is facing a wanton endangerment charge after crashing a drone into Commonwealth Stadium.   Police say it’s the first drone related incident on the Lexington campus.

Lexington Council Trying to Find Compromise on Minimum Wage

Sep 11, 2015
Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Two proposals to raise the minimum wage in Lexington are now before city council.  Council member Susan Lamb on Thursday detailed an alternative proposal to that offered by colleague Jennifer Mossotti.  Lamb’s plan boosts the minimum wage to $9.00 an hour over three years, compared Mossotti's proposal of $10.10. Mossotti says another difference is her draft includes a provision for tipped employees.  “We have to get over that first hurdle, we’re going to move forward with the basic increases in minimum wage, then we’ll go to the next step,” said Mossotti.

The Lexington City Council has approved a plan to consolidate two homeless service centers into one new site.  The action is also expected to impact two civil suits and a federal investigation.

Stu Johnson / WEKU News

A University of Kentucky anatomy and neurobiology professor was among the scientists who discovered hundreds of human-like skeletal fossils in South Africa.  The discovery is considered to be evidence of a new species of human relative.  Paleoanthropologist Andrew Deane says it’s hard to say where the fossils fit in.  “The human family tree is much more like a bush than it is a tree or a ladder," Deane explained. "There’s quite a bit of diversity there and quite a bit of variability in the human family.”


People on both sides of the energy debate in Kentucky seem to agree that costs for the consumer are going to go up.  Clean energy and federal emissions standards were widely discussed this week at the 39th Governor’s Conference on Energy and the Environment.

Kentucky Attorney General's Office

A for-profit college in Kentucky has agreed to pay more than $1 million in a settlement with former students.  Multiple lawsuits accused Owensboro-based Daymar College of enrolling students through bogus claims about job placement and transfer credits. 

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway sued Daymar College, alleging the school violated consumer protection laws.  Former students claimed in lawsuits that they were deceived about the quality of Daymar’s degree programs and were left deep in debt with few career opportunities. 

Kentucky LRC Gets First Permanent Director Since 2013

Sep 10, 2015

  A former legislative staff executive in Nevada will be the leader of the Kentucky Legislative Research Commission, filling a post that’s been vacant for two years since a sexual harassment scandal rocked Frankfort.

David Byerman will become the LRC’s director in October.

Byerman will take over a state agency that’s been under at times intense scrutiny since two LRC employees alleged sexual harassment by a state legislator in August 2013. The LRC provides research and staff support to Kentucky’s state legislators.


Week two of Lexington’s needle exchange program is scheduled this Friday at the Fayette County Health Department. A health department official calls the first go round an “overwhelming success.”

Lexington city council members are wrestling with the best approach to streamline design standards for downtown development.  The effort to establish rules for the city’s inner core stems from the demolition of a downtown block seven years ago to make way for the Centre Point development.  No decisions were made during a council committee meeting Tuesday.  Council member Jake Gibbs says instituting standardized rules does not mean an end to creativity.   “They provide for setbacks, height, configuration of parking, which in my mind is very important," explained Gibbs.

Davis Will Skip Work Until Monday

Sep 9, 2015

The day after she was released from jail, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis announced she would stay home from work until Monday, leaving unanswered whether she'll comply with a court order to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Davis's attorneys with the Christian law firm Liberty Counsel released a statement saying that she will spend the next several days resting with family and combing through the hundreds of letters she received during her five-day stint in jail.


Lexington officials say progress is being made to address the concerns of waste management employees.  The head of public works says the two sides have come to some agreement but more time is needed to address all issues.

Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Lexington city leaders have decided to wait before moving forward with home delivery restrictions on unsolicited publications. The debate at city hall pertains primarily to an advertising and news product of the Lexington Herald Leader.  A council committee voted earlier this summer to require such publications to be placed on doorsteps, rather than on front lawns or on driveways. Council member Bill Farmer believes there are free speech issues to consider.  “We’re taking a broad brush approach to stopping the paper from delivering this circular, this informational circular, and it harms t

Lexington Support Group Promotes Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Sep 9, 2015

The state of Kentucky is shining a light on ovarian cancer during the month of September. There are no definitive symptoms, making diagnosis a difficult task.   Sue Jacobs is president of the Bluegrass Ovarian Cancer Support Group.  She says Kentucky’s screening program is recognized nationally.  “The earlier you are diagnosed and the earlier your stage of cancer, the less chance of having recurrence, but it’s not uncommon,” said Jacobs.

Jack Conway Unveils Education Plan in Louisville

Sep 8, 2015
Ashley Lopez /

Attorney General and Democratic candidate for governor Jack Conway released his education plan in Louisville Tuesday.

In it, Conway continues his push for more early childhood education programs in the state. His plan aims to expand access to preschoolers in families at 138 percent of the poverty level.

The big question is, though, how the state would pay for that expansion.

Beshear: No Special Session on Marriage Licensing

Sep 8, 2015
Gage Skidmore / Wikipedia Commons

In the wake of a defiant clerk's release from jail, Gov. Steve Beshear is reiterating that he won't call a special session for the Kentucky General Assembly to overhaul the state's process for licensing marriages.

Beshear's remarks came shortly after Rowan County clerk Kim Davis walked out of jail Tuesday. She spent several days behind bars over her refusal to issue marriage licenses. She cited her religious belief that gay marriage is a sin.

Her supporters have condemned Beshear's refusal. A handful of clerks sent letters this summer demanding he let the legislature remove clerks from the licensing process. Beshear called it a waste of taxpayer money. All but a handful of clerks have complied since the U.S. Supreme Court effectively legalized same-sex marriages nationwide.

Kentucky will receive nearly $4 million in federal funds to combat prescription drug and heroin abuse.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center has been awarded $940,000 each year for the next four years. McConnell says he was informed of the federal support by the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee will join protesters at a Tuesday rally outside the jail where a Kentucky clerk is locked in a cell over her refusal to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.

The rally is scheduled to begin in the afternoon after Huckabee's planned private visit with Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis.

There's been much attention over the past week given to Rowan County clerk Kim Davis and her refusal to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.  Other related issues could come before state lawmakers.

  Dr. Dorothy Edwards is passionate about eliminating the problem of sexual violence in our society and specifically on college campuses. On this week's show we'll hear from the author and creator of the Green Dot prevention program and discuss efforts to eliminate sexual violence in Kentucky.

Triple Crown winner American Pharoah will likely be in Lexington next month to compete in the Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland.  Following a loss in the Traverse Stakes at Saratoga, owner Ahmed  Zayat  talked about retiring the horse.  Now, he is pointing American Pharoah to racing at the Breeders' Cup.  Kentucky Thoroughbred Association Executive Director Chauncey Morris admits there are few certainties in racing.  “Two months provides a bit of time on tuning up the horse, but then, also horses are living, breathing creatures," said Morris.

Algal Advisory Issued In Kentucky

Sep 4, 2015
Kentucky Division of Water

Kentucky state officials are warning people to stay out of portions of the Ohio River, after harmful algal blooms were identified earlier this week.

These algal blooms are a type of cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae. It can irritate your skin if you’re exposed to it for a prolonged period. The algae can also cause nausea and other gastrointestinal problems.


A Rowan County deputy clerk issued a marriage license to a same-sex couple Friday morning, ending a months-long protest from the office led by Clerk Kim Davis, who remains in jail on a contempt of court charge.

James Yates and William Smith Jr. were issued the license shortly after the clerk’s office opened in Morehead on Friday:


Lexington Begins Needle Exchange

Sep 3, 2015
Stu Johnson / WEKU News


Lexington will launch a needle exchange program Friday at the Fayette County Health Department.  The initiative aims to reduce the spread of HIV and Hepatitis.

The needle exchange local option is just one facet of the state law aimed at addressing heroin related issues.  Lexington Health Commissioner Rice Leach says used needles should be transported in stick proof containers.  “If you’re gonna bring them in in a bag, okay,” said Leach. “But we’d rather you bring them in in a butter container or drop them down in a two liter Coke bottle or something like that.”

Kentucky’s Universities Discuss Campus Safety

Sep 3, 2015

Eight public universities and six private schools are collaborating on ways to increase safety on all their campuses.  The University of Kentucky hosted the Assessing Campus Climate Conference Thursday. Northern Kentucky University Associate Dean of Students, Ann James says, sexual assault is an issue at every school.  “We’re concerned,” said James. “I mean we’re no different than any other campus. NKU has as much a problem as anybody else does.  And now we’re gonna actually be able to get our minds around what is our actual population that has been impacted.”