Forum Focuses on Health as Economic Driver

Sep 19, 2016
Stu Johnson

Health advocates are stressing the importance of a healthy community as a way to help spur on economic growth.  That connection was discussed at a health policy forum in Lexington Monday.

Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning news anchor and reporter who covers America’s untold stories and highlights today’s critical issues.  For 25 years, Maria Hinojosa has helped to tell America's untold stories and brought to light unsung heroes in America and abroad. 

Hinojosa will deliver the Hispanic Heritage Keynote Address as part of the EKU Chautauqua Lecture Series Thursday evening September 22 and is our guest for Eastern Standard that morning at 11:00.

Here’s a note we received from listener, Seth, “ At 10:00 pm, Friday you have "Overnight Jazz". Is there any way I could get a list of the artists from that?” 

What I wrote back to him is that 10:00 on Friday’s the show is “Jazz Night in America.” There is a link for it’s listings online at the NPR website at

Data Farming: How Big Data Is Revolutionizing Big Ag

Sep 19, 2016
Nicole Erwin | Ohio Valley ReSource

It’s harvest time and a semi full of corn just pulled onto the scales at Seven Springs Farm in Cadiz, Kentucky. On the scale, the analytics work begins: moisture content, weight, production rates, and more are all recorded.     

This is just one truck and many more will follow with much more to be stored and later sold for ethanol production. Just one of the farm’s bins can hold as many as 350,000 bushels, or 16.8 million pounds.

Guard Vacancies at Fayette Jail on Decline

Sep 19, 2016

Security guard vacancies at the Fayette County Jail could hover near single digits by the end of the year.  City council members got an update last week.

The Fayette County Detention Center, like many jails across the nation, is struggling to keep corrections officers.  Administrators say only certain people are cut out for security positions. 

Louisville Firm Unveiling Factory Messaging App

Sep 19, 2016

A Louisville-based software and solutions company is about to unveil a new piece of technology that could have implications for Kentucky automakers like Toyota and Ford.

IGear Director of Partner and Client Services Tony Fink says sensors capture everything on equipment in today’s factories.  To help deal with the deluge of data, Fink says “squeak” technology was developed. 

It’s time for our weekly chat featuring weekend arts and cultural events with Rich Copley and Harriett Hendren of the Lexington Herald-Leader.  First on their agenda this weekend is tonight’s opening concert for the region’s premiere symphony orchestra. 

Rich Copley & Harriett Hendren cover arts and culture for the Lexington Herald-Leader and Lexgo dot com.

University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto has reviewed details about campus building projects totaling more than $2 billion. There were also lighter moments in his Thursday speech to Lexington Rotarians. 

Capilouto talked about how the historic construction on the Lexington campus has meant thousands of jobs and millions in state and local tax revenues. 

Hazard to Host First Regional Women Vets Conference

Sep 15, 2016

Female military veterans will gather in Hazard this fall for their first regional conference.  Seeking a meeting close to their homes the event will be held October 1st.

Kentucky Women Veterans Program Coordinator LuWanda Knuckles says she’s eager to meet more women veterans in eastern Kentucky, especially those who may feel isolated from a veterans community. 

The one day conference at the Hazard Community and Technical College will offer workshops on veterans’ benefits and services, which officials say women vets often don’t seek. 

Repairs Underway on EKU Pedway

Sep 15, 2016
Stu Johnson

Reconstruction work is progressing on a pedestrian walkway adjacent to the campus of Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond. A contractor hopes to see the affected roadway reopen next week.

A commercial truck with a raised hydraulic lift plowed into the overhead walkway Friday.  Danny Price is Vice President of Contractor E.C. Matthews. He says removal work this week will hopefully pave the way for re-opening a portion of Lancaster Avenue next week.

A Berea College administrator has offered testimony about the cost of college education to a congressional committee in Washington.  Much of the questioning Tuesday focused on student debt.

Berea College is known nationally for its "no student paid" tuition with a "student work required" philosophy. 

Lexington Needle Exchange May Expand

Sep 14, 2016

Lexington new health commissioner gave an update on the status of the city's needle exchange program Tuesday.

Dr. Kraig Humbaugh told council members that just over 20,000 used needles had been brought in and more than 21,000 clean needles were given out.  Since the first needle exchange on September 4, 2015, 376 clients have made over 1000 visits. 

Lexington Council Discusses Diversity Recruitment

Sep 13, 2016

Lexington public safety officials are working to increase the number of minorities in policing, fire protection, corrections, emergency management and emergency 911.  A number of barriers to increasing diversity were discussed during a council committee meeting Tuesday.

Public Safety Commissioner Ronnie Bastin told members of the General Government, Social Service Committee that agencies are reaching inside and outside the community to recruit employees. 

Stu Johnson

A woman with 35 years of experience evaluating and treating adult sex offenders is leading training sessions throughout Kentucky.  One such program attracted well over 100 people Monday in Lexington.

Cory Jewell Jensen is with the Center for Behavioral Intervention in Oregon.  She spoke to those working in areas like law enforcement, school counseling, nursing and child protective services. 

Stu Johnson

Governor Bevin says the University of Louisville is a key component of a National Center to focus on automotive research in areas of automotive efficiency and sustainable transportation.  That could cover everything from online transportation services to self-driving cars.

He made that announcement Monday before the second Auto Vision Conference in Lexington. 

 Tom Martin talks with Dave Tatman, executive director of the Kentucky Auto Industry Association. He is also associate vice president for advanced manufacturing at Western Kentucky University. Dave and his team are getting ready for "AutoVision," the association’s annual conference coming to the Lexington Center September 12th and 13th.

Opioid High: Students Face A Different Kind of Test

Sep 12, 2016
Aaron Payne | Ohio Valley ReSource

t’s not just about notebooks and pencil boxes anymore: the opioid epidemic means back-to-school supplies now include things like emergency overdose treatments and drug prevention plans.

Many schools in the Ohio Valley region are using random drug testing despite doubts from addiction treatment experts about whether the tests really work to deter abuse.


A Tragedy, Then Testing

Yearlings Enter Sales Ring at Keeneland

Sep 12, 2016

Potential buyers will be eyeing hundreds of thoroughbred horses this week in Lexington.  The 73rd edition of the fall auction at what’s regarded as the primary international sales event begins Monday at the Keeneland race track.

Kentuckians joined the rest of the nation and the world last weekend in marking the 15th anniversary of the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil.  There were interfaith services, a memorial dedication, and a 9/11 stair climb.

Two Central Kentucky Muslims hold out hope for growing relationships in the next 15 years.

Dr. Nadia Rasheed is an anesthesiologist who was in an operating room when the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon occurred.  She says a television was placed in a common area and all were horrified and scared. 

It’s been a busy first few weeks of the Fall Semester on the campuses of Eastern Kentucky University. In fact 2016 has been a busy and eventful year in many ways.

On this week’s show, we’ll welcome EKU President Michael Benson. We’ll talk about what’s been going on and his views of the future for the school serving Central and Eastern Kentucky and beyond.

Lexington’s chief prosecutor says his father taught him early on about consequences for breaking rules.   Ray Larson announced Thursday he will retire at the end of this month. 

Larson is concerned about changes in sentencing standards that result in more probation, saying his preference is “first time, every time.”  “If people were punished first time they committed a crime every time, that would be a deterrent.  But, we’re in a 2nd, 3rd and 25th chance society right now,” said Larson.

UPDATE AS OF 5:00 PM 9/9/16 

EKU officials say it could be three weeks before Lancaster Ave between Barnes Mill Rd. and Crabbe St. is re-opened.

- - - 

An accident has seriously damaged the pedestrian walkway over Lancaster Ave on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University.

The incident, which occurred around noon Friday has shut down Lancaster between Barnes Mill Rd and Crabbe St. University officials say there were no injuries but the roadway is expected to remain closed for an extended period of time.

It’s time for our weekly chat featuring weekend arts and cultural events with Rich Copley and Harriett Hendren of the Lexington Herald-Leader.  Now that Labor Day is behind us, they’re focusing on fall festivals.  

Rich Copley & Harriett Hendren cover arts and culture for the Lexington Herald-Leader and Lexgo dot com. 

You can also find listings of arts and cultural activities at the events calendar link at WEKU dot FM.

The leader of a non-profit economic development agency in Eastern Kentucky sees promise in the results of a just-released workforce survey.  It’s partly focused on efforts to lure new firms to the region that could offer employment to out-of-work coal miners.

Long time Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney Ray Larson has announced his retirement effective at the end of September.  He’s served as Lexington’s chief prosecutor for more than three decades.

The man known among criminal court professionals as a "no-nonsense" prosecutor says he didn’t want to be known as someone who stayed too long in the job. 

In his notice, Ray Larson states guiding principles for his office were, among others, treating every person fairly.  In almost 32 years as Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney he believes the office has been operated free of politics. 

Miners to Rally for Pension Protection

Sep 8, 2016
U.S. Senate

Thousands of retired coal miners will rally in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to urge Congress to shore up a fund that supports their pensions and benefits. Area lawmakers from both sides of the aisle were at the National Press Club in Washington to speak in support of the Miner’s Protection Act.  

Stu Johnson-WEKU News

A Kentucky man has entered a "not guilty" plea in a computer hacking case with ties to a highly-publicized sexual assault in Eastern Ohio. 

Deric Lostutter appeared in federal court in Lexington Wednesday. He is accused of helping to hack a website to draw attention to a 2012 Ohio High School rape case.  He is charged with conspiring to gain illegal access to an online account and making false statements.

In light of a recent rash of overdose – related deaths, Kentucky public health officials say they can't predict drug overdose activity across Kentucky.  But they have gained some insights about heroin use from voluntary reporting by medical partners.  Preliminary reports to the Department of Public Health show 15 overdoses, 12 of them fatal, from noon last Friday until Monday morning. 

WEKU News - Eastern Kentucky University

A panel comprised of public university presidents, legislative representatives and officials from Governor Matt Bevin’s office is continuing to work on plans to implement partial performance funding for higher education in Kentucky.  The Performance Funding Work Group meets Wednesday in Frankfort. 

Fire Safety Month Focuses on Off-Campus Housing

Sep 7, 2016

September is being observed as Campus Fire Safety Month as Kentucky joins with states across the nation in focusing on the issue.