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1:04pm

Wed September 7, 2011
Statehouse News

Court of Appeals Dismisses Case Against City

The Kentucky Court of Appeals upheld a lower court’s ruling against Bowling Green Police Department Sgt. Shawn Helbig in his whistle-blower lawsuit against the city. A three-judge panel of state appeals court judges unanimously affirmed the Warren Circuit Court ruling dismissing Helbig’s complaint that he was demoted from the rank of BGPD captain after raising concerns about the city’s overtime policy.

12:54pm

Wed September 7, 2011
The Commonwealth

Garrard County Library Raises Taxes

The Garrard County Public library board recently voted to raise taxes for the fourth year in a row. But, this time, residents and county officials rallied against the increase. About a dozen residents and two Fiscal Court magistrates attended the board’s mandatory tax hearing Tuesday and argued against the hike, which sets the new tax rate at 7.9 cents per $100 of real property.

12:51pm

Wed September 7, 2011
Statehouse News

Kentucky Lawmaker Shares Views on 9/11

With the 10th anniversary of September 11 approaching, a Kentucky lawmaker shared more of his controversial and conspiratorial views on the terror attacks with a local publication.  Last month, WFPL talked to state Sen. Perry Clark, D-Louisville, about a letter he wrote that compared President Barack Obama to Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler over the debt ceiling compromise.

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12:15pm

Wed September 7, 2011
Business and the Economy

NKY Industrial Expansion Provides Jobs

Community leaders and company officials from ZF Steering Systems LLC Wednesday celebrated the completion of its $95.8 million expansion in Northern Kentucky. The project entailed the construction of two new buildings totaling 175,000 square feet on its existing site and is creating 374 new full-time jobs over the next two years.

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11:03am

Wed September 7, 2011
Business and the Economy

Danville Manufacturer to Expand Facilities

Community leaders and officials from Denyo Manufacturing Corp. in Danville announced Wednesday that the company has chosen to invest nearly $6.9 million in its Boyle County plant to modernize its plant.  Denyo Manufacturing manufactures, assembles and sells industrial electric generators. The new investment will entail the construction of an additional facility to house a new, technologically advanced coating process. The new process will help to minimize errors, hazardous waste, air emissions, energy costs and flammable materials and increase the quality of products and productivity, according to a press release from the governor's office. The project is expected to be completed by March 2012.

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11:00am

Wed September 7, 2011
The Commonwealth

Elderly Hiker Rescued at Cumberland Falls

Emergency officials from Whitley and McCreary counties had to use ropes and a basket to carry a 70-year-old woman up a 30-foot embankment off a trail at Cumberland Falls State Resort Park late Tuesday afternoon. The woman and her husband had been walking on a trail when she slipped down an embankment.

10:55am

Wed September 7, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

Arrested for Phony Prescriptions

Ryan E. Lannen

An employee at a printing company was arrested Tuesday on charges he was printing phony prescription pads and writing his own prescriptions for Hydrocodone. Ryan E. Lannen, 23, of Corbin was arrested on 42 counts of fraudulently obtaining prescriptions and forgery of prescriptions following an investigation by Laurel County Sheriff's deputies.

10:45am

Wed September 7, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

Hard Times for Tobacco Farmers

Jason Martinez helped James Osbourne top tobacco Thursday on a Mackville Road farm. Osbourne has 12 acres in the patch.
Jesse Osbourne Springfield Sun

Tobacco farmers in Washington County who have been around a while may recognize the quality of tobacco this year’s crop is producing. Memories from the drought of 1983 stir like the dust that blows in the hot, dry summer wind. “This is the worst tobacco crop I’ve ever had,” James Osbourne, who has been raising tobacco for 20 years, said. “My dad thinks the tobacco is as bad as that (1983).” An ill-timed mixture of extreme wet conditions and extreme heat have concocted a bitter tasting result for farmers.

10:40am

Wed September 7, 2011
The Commonwealth

Horse Owners, Caretaker Facing Charges

Animal cruelty charges are being filed against the owners and caretaker of 13 horses that were removed from a Hopkins County property by court order last month. The animals were underfed and several had open sores, according to the county attorney.

10:36am

Wed September 7, 2011
Business and the Economy

Ellis Park Wants to Begin Instant Racing

Ellis Park took a hit at the betting window at its just-concluded 2011 live racing meet and saw a significant drop in the number of horses per race, the racetrack reported Tuesday. Nonetheless, owner Ron Geary said he will ask for live racing dates in 2012. He says he also plans to make application in October to install Instant Racing machines at Ellis to generate more revenue and help it compete with racetracks in some neighboring states that have full track-side casinos. If approved, the slot machine-like devices would likely be installed this winter, according to Geary.

10:31am

Wed September 7, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

Sewer Clerk Indicted for Missing Funds

The city of Corydon's sewer clerk, who has been on administrative leave since January, was indicted Tuesday for theft by unlawful taking over $10,000. That's a Class C felony punishable by five to 10 years in prison. Melissa Clark, 47, was placed on leave a month before the state auditor's office released a damning report in February that showed more than $81,000 unaccounted for in the city's finances.

10:26am

Wed September 7, 2011
Business and the Economy

Troubles for City of Cumberland's Utilities

The City of Cumberland took steps to avoid possible foreclosure on delinquent bonds on Tuesday. A procedure that could have resulted in the city’s water and sewer facilities being put under receivership. Behind the foreclosure threat is a debt of $93,000 to the Department of Rural Water that came due on July 1.

10:22am

Wed September 7, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

Minor Flooding in Harlin Co.

Cumberland Avenue in downtown Cumberland was blocked off to traffic on Tuesday when drains overflowed covering the roadway.
Nola Sizemore Harlan Daily Enterprise

With the Tri-Cities area of Harlan County receiving 7.03 inches of rain within a 48-hour period, flooding occurred in low-lying areas in Blair. Jackson-based National Weather Service Forecaster Pete Geogerian said most other areas of Harlan County received from 5.26 to 5.77 inches of rain over the Labor Day weekend.

10:11am

Wed September 7, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

UK Tickets Used to Get Patient Referrals

A civil complaint filed by the U.S. Department of Justice alleges that Lexington-based Nurses' Registry used cash, concert tickets and University of Kentucky basketball tickets to induce doctors to refer patients to the agency, in violation of federal Medicare rules. According to a news release issued by the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, the amended complaint was filed Friday in a case that accuses Nurses' Registry of widespread Medicare abuse.

10:04am

Wed September 7, 2011
The Commonwealth

Hardin Co. Remembers 9/11

Elizabethtown firefighters and others bow their heads as a prayer is said Tuesday morning during a ceremony in remembrance of 9/11, at Elizabethtown Fire Department Headquarters.
Jill Pickett News Enterprise

Hardin County law enforcement and emergency responders gathered Tuesday morning at Elizabethtown Fire Department Station 1 for a brief ceremony in remembrance of the attacks on 9/11 as the 10th anniversary draws closer. “We must not ever forget that day, especially the sacrifices made by all those who gave their lives that day,” Elizabethtown fire chief Mike Hulsey said.

7:59am

Wed September 7, 2011
Business and the Economy

Testimony Given on Possible Rate Increases

About 50 people gathered at a middle school in West Louisville Tuesday night to tell the state’s Public Service Commission what they think about proposed utility rate increases. Louisville Gas and Electric and Kentucky Utilities have both proposed rate increases to help the companies recover the costs for new pollution-reducing technology that will soon be required by the federal government. If the PSC approves the increase, it’ll be staggered over four years. LG&E’s typical ratepayer (who uses about 1,000 kilowatt hours per month) will see their bill increase by about two dollars next year, and eventually by 2016 the bill will be about $16.00 higher. Most of those testifying to commissioners were against the rate increase. Reverend Milton Seymore of the Justice Resource Center says he thinks LG&E should have to absorb the costs without help from ratepayers.

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7:55am

Wed September 7, 2011
Education

KY Ed. Comm. Appointed to National Board

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has appointed Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) Commissioner Terry Holliday to the National Assessment Governing Board. “The governing board my make decisions about which types of test NAEP will provide. NAEP tests things like reading and math and science and writing,” said Lisa Gross, Kentucky Department of Education spokeswoman Holliday will serve in the category of chief state school officer, which “sets policy for the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), known as the National Report Card.” NAEP is the country’s only nationally representative assessment of student achievement in various subjects. It’s an independent organization in association with the U.S. Department of Education.

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7:52am

Wed September 7, 2011
Science/Health

"Slow Food" Advocate in KY

The world population is expected to reach nine billion in the next 50 years. On top of that, the growing middle class in China and other developing countries is adapting a western-style diet…the type of diet that many healthy food advocates say isn’t sustainable, not for humans and not for the environment. Slow Food International is one organization that’s pushing for a return to more traditional eating styles. The head of the organization, Paolo di Croce, visited slow food advocates in Louisville this week. He also sat down with WFPL’s Gabe Bullard to discuss the global lifestyle changes that need to take place in order to foster good, clean and fair food. 

4:17pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Education

UK Scales Back "Core" Classes

The University of Kentucky is celebrating the inaugural semester of its new "Core" studies program, which all undergraduate students must complete as part of their degree programs. A performance by UK opera students marked the beginning of the ceremony, which celebrated the start of UK Core, which will replace the aging University Studies Program, adopted in the mid-80s. 

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4:10pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Science/Health

E-Health in Erlanger

The debate over sharing medical records via the internet continues tomorrow during a summit in northern Kentucky.  A deputy director with the Governor’s Office of Electronic Health Information says a quick exchange of information can save lives and money.

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3:46pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

Recession Changing Attitudes in Appalachia

New research on residents of two counties in southeastern Kentucky show the area’s attitude about the environment has changed since the recession. Researchers with the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire surveyed residents in Harlan and Letcher counties in 2007, then returned this year to see whether and how beliefs have changed.

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3:16pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Science/Health

UK Cancer Center Touts High Survival Rates

Being diagnosed with is a scary experience, but Suzi Shoemaker of Midway says a screening program at the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center saved her life. In 2006 doctors discovered she had ovarian cancer. "I had the advantage of a team of people who could find out what was wrong and give me the best possible chance for survival at that initial point." 

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2:13pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Kentucky Arts and Culture

Nothing Sweeter than "Honey Festival"

Throughout its 34-year history, the weather during the Breathitt County Honey Festival has either been very hot, or rainy and cool. Last weekend's edition proved to be a stinging scorcher, with heat index temperatures over 100 degrees and plenty of sweaty faces. Despite the heat and humidity, the crowds came downtown. They saw old friends, listened to music, and visited the booths to eat and to buy. For many of them, it made for a fine, festive Labor Day weekend once again.

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12:34pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Education

Students Cash-in on AP Tests

Franklin County High School students have earned nearly $10,000 in rewards for passing Advanced Placement courses since the launch of a grant aimed at boosting enrollment and performance. Students and their parents collected checks in a Friday afternoon assembly: $100 for each passing score they received on an AP exam in English, math or science last year. State education officials announced the three-year, $423,000 AdvanceKentucky grant for Franklin County and Western Hills High School in April 2010

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12:32pm

Tue September 6, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

Garden Guru Plants Seeds of Influence

Sharon Bale is the epitome of a woman for all seasons, and while she’ll tell you she retired this spring, that’s hardly the case. For 36 years she has apologized for the dirt under her fingernails, but that’s the nature of the beast as a horticultural extension specialist in the College of Agriculture at the University of Kentucky. She has driven back and forth from her home in Country Lane Estates in Frankfort to Lexington sometimes six days a week to dig.

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12:27pm

Tue September 6, 2011
All Politics are Local

Williams Launches Second TV Ad

After going over a month without running any television ads, Republican gubernatorial candidate David Williams released his second commercial Tuesday. The spot entitled “Better” takes swipes at Democratic Governor Steve Beshear for job losses and pledges Williams will stand up to President Obama and other “Washington liberals.” The ad alsocites an online newsletter that says the state is one of the “worst-run” in the country.

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11:42am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Commonwealth

Interstate Exit Ads Cash Cows

They're staples of each trek down every open highway in the country: the interstate exit business signs. The ones that point you to the nearest gas station or restaurant. But how do they work? Which businesses are chosen? How much do they cost? And how often do they change? In Kentucky, the state has handed off the operation of the sign program to a private company, Kentucky Logos, and receives a portion of the sales. The company, which has handled the program since 1997, is a subsidiary of Interstate Logos, which handles similar programs in 22 of the 28 states that have privatized the service.

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11:39am

Tue September 6, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

Surcharges Confound Energy Cost Cutters

The three coal-fired units along Herrington Lake opened in 1957. KU plans to spend $402 million to comply with new regulations.
Kentucky Utilities

There's no doubt that Kentucky's electricity bills are on the rise, as utilities sort out how much it will cost them to comply with new federal environmental regulations. Kentucky Utilities, the largest electricity provider in Central Kentucky, has asked the state Public Service Commission for permission to increase the average customer's monthly bill more than 12 percent by 2016. But this case is far different than those that are familiar to most people. It's not about base rates, which look at the price for a kilowatt hour of electricity. It's about the environmental surcharge you find on your bills.

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11:35am

Tue September 6, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

30-Degree Drop Ends Near-Record Heat

Sometimes a 70-degree day feels downright balmy, but that wasn't the case Monday. Bet you grabbed a sweater or a jacket before leaving the house, right? That's because over the weekend, Central Kentucky sizzled when it hit 98 degrees Friday and Saturday. That was close to the record of 100 for both days. "When you get a 30-degree switch, you're obviously going to feel a shock," said Ryan Sharp, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Louisville.

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11:33am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Commonwealth

Road Repair Work Continues into Fall

Pothole patching, sweeping, drain and ditch cleaning, pavement marking, and maintenance crews may work on major interstates in the Louisville Metro area only during non-peak daytime hours and at night. Motorists should watch for roadside maintenance and pavement marking crews on interstates and highways throughout the rest of the district on a daily basis.

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