Toyota Gives 100 Vehicles to Nonprofits

May 17, 2011

Polls are open for Facebook users to select nonprofit organizations, including some with Scott County ties, to be awarded new Toyota vehicles. Toyota Motor Corp.’s 100 Cars For Good Program appears on the Toyota USA Facebook page. Each day, the company will feature five nonprofit organizations and the highest vote-getter will receive the vehicle of its choice. The company will give 100 vehicles to 100 nonprofit organizations over 100 days.

Six die on Kentucky Roadways

May 17, 2011

Six people died in six separate crashes on Kentucky roadways from Monday, May 9, through Sunday, May 15.  All of the fatalities involved motor vehicles and four of the victims were not wearing seat belts. Single-fatality crashes occurred in Carlisle, Estill, Jefferson, Oldham, Perry, and Spencer counties. Alcohol was a factor in the Estill and Spencer county crashes, according to a Kentucky State Police press release.

Shuttle carries Kentucky Cancer Experiment

May 17, 2011

Kentucky scientists will soon be analyzing cells that flew to space aboard the second-to-last U.S. space shuttle flight as part of their effort to determine whether the growth of brain tumors can be slowed. The space shuttle Endeavour, which lifted off Monday morning, is carrying a biomedical experiment that will investigate whether the combined effects of microgravity and ionizing radiation increase or decrease the survival rate of cancer cells affected by glioblastoma multiforme, said Kris Kimel of Kentucky Space, an independent company started by the Kentucky Science and Technology Corp. in 2007.

Georgetown College AD Steps Down

May 17, 2011

Eric Ward announced Monday that he will step down as Georgetown College’s director of athletics, effective June 30. “I think it’s in my best interest and the best interest of the college,” he said.  Ward has been director of athletics at Georgetown for 10 years. During his tenure, he has overseen improvements to the baseball field, hired full-time coaches in positions that had been only part-time, and put in countless hours with “the pedal to the floor,” he said.

Powell Co. Judge-Executive Dies

May 17, 2011

Powell County Judge-Executive Jim Potts, who had served in office only five months, died Monday. He was 67.  Mr. Potts, a Democrat, was elected in November, defeating Republican Randy Bowen and write-in candidate Darren Farmer. He took office in January.

Homeowners Warned of Flood Damage Risks

May 17, 2011

As floodwaters recede in western Kentucky, homeowners are reminded that furnaces, water heaters, electric panels and liquefied petroleum gas tanks that have been underwater may need to be inspected after repairs are complete.

Online Classes Leave Campus Quiet

May 17, 2011

The latest student numbers at Eastern Kentucky come with an interesting twist. Since 2006, summer school enrollment at EKU has increased by more than 4 percent. At the same time, there are fewer faces on campus.  School officials cite the growing popularity of online classes.  President Doug Whitlock says Eastern is competing with  institutions like Phoenix University to provide quality online classes.

Voter turnout in Madison County today is expected in the eight to nine percent range.  With 52-thousand registered voters, those are anemic numbers. They come as no surprise to County Clerk Kenny Barger, who is more concerned about cost.

An organizational change within the American Red Cross is affecting the city of Lexington's public transit service. LexTran has a contract with the Bluegrass Chapter of the Red Cross to operate WHEELS, the transportation service for people with disabilities. As LexTran prepares to pass a $24 million budget for the next fiscal year, the Red Cross has said it needs an additional $346,000, pushing the cost of its service past $4 million a year.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is conducting an exercise this week in the New Madrid Seismic Zone, which covers much of Kentucky. FEMA will conduct various simulations and drills to test the federal, state and local response to a devastating earthquake on the New Madrid Fault. Among the participants will be about 30 of the University of Louisville’s standardized patients, who act out various maladies during disaster drills. Program director Carrie Bohnert says the patients have been trained to simulate common earthquake-related injuries.

The Vatican today released a letter presenting some guidelines for dealing with sex abuse in dioceses around the world. The letter didn’t change much on the policy outlined last summer by Pope Benedict XVI…and the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, says the new guidelines don’t go far enough.

Polls Open, Record Low Turnout Expected

May 17, 2011

Kentucky elections officials are predicting the second-lowest voter turnout for a primary in more than 10 years. Secretary of State Elaine Walker predicts 10% of voters will go to the polls today.

A day before the May 17 primary, the Kentucky Democratic Party and Republican gubernatorial candidate David Williams are trading barbs in a likely preview of the general election. Williams is the favorite in the race against Louisville businessman Phil Moffett and Jefferson County Clerk Bobbie Holsclaw. Hoping to clip his turnout, the KDP launched a 30-second YouTube video slamming the state Senate president for refusing to release his tax returns, suggesting he has something to hide.

Mayor Jim Gray, business and other community leaders helped cut the ribbon today at the Town Branch Market, a new corner grocery shop in downtown Lexington. Alan Lytle has details.

Nothing was resolved at a Frankfort hearing in Kentucky's price gouging case against Marathon Oil.  Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate is in the middle of a murder trial, and rescheduled the Marathon case for Thursday morning.

Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” on Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the debt limit debate presents “an opportunity” to take on federal spending.

Despite a drop in production and profits after the earthquake in Japan, Toyota Motor Company officials are optimistic about the automaker’s future. Toyota sales spokesperson Steve Curtis says the parts shortage that followed the earthquake has not been as long or severe as expected. Toyota profits dropped by 77 percent after the disaster, but Curtis says demand, at least in North America, remains high.

While media outlets are focused on U.S. Sen. Rand Paul’s latest gaffe, few noticed he was passed over for a coveted committee slot by fellow Kentucky Republican and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who selected a junior colleague instead.

A report in the Lexington Herald-Leader reveals Governor Steve Beshear used a state plane to take his family to the 2011 NCAA Final Four basketball tournament in Houston. The Kentucky Democratic Party reimbursed the state $6,105 for the flight and has spent almost $85,000 to cover the cost of similar flights since the governor took office.

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition wants to change a family's life in Lexington. The ABC television show known for tearing down and completely rebuilding homes in a matter of days is seeking nominations in the central Kentucky area.

With the snips of several ceremonial scissors, a host of local, state, and federal dignitaries on Sunday, helped the University of Kentucky officially dedicate the new 12-story Patient Care Pavilion at UK Hospital. Alan Lytle has the story. Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear says UK's new facility marks a significant milestone in healthcare for the Commonwealth.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund is working to collect photographs of all 1,058 Kentuckians whose names are on the memorial in Washington, D.C.  It’s part of a national effort to gather photos for an online exhibit and for an underground education center being built near the memorial.

The two Republicans vying for Secretary of State represent both the establishment and anti-establishment factions within the GOP. Kentucky Public Radio's Alan Lytle has this primary preview.

Highway construction is typically considered a part of the summer season.   This year is expected to be no different.  There are a number of projects in central Kentucky either underway or about to begin.  One which will begin in early June is the re-configuration of the Harrodsburg road-New circle interchange. 

Most politicians steer clear from discussions about ‘taxes.’ That’s particularly the case if the talk is about a new tax or a tax increase.  Still, ongoing concerns over Kentucky’s budget have some candidates in Tuesday’s primary talking about potential reforms.

An investigation is underway into what a Lexington city employee said about other employees in the Division of Waste Management. At an April meeting of the Urban County Council's environmental quality committee, employee Richard Miller said that some garbage truck drivers were hostile during a training session and that three drivers were illiterate.

The man most responsible for building a new hospital at the University of Kentucky says the facility’s ready for its “close up” this weekend. The one-point-two million square foot facility includes two patient-care floors with 128 intensive care and acute care beds.  Vice president for Health Affairs Michael Karpf says the new facility is much more adaptable than the old hospital.

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway is accusing Marathon Petroleum Company of price gouging during a state of emergency.  The legal brief has been added to an ongoing lawsuit against Marathon for alleged price gouging during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

It was reported today that Humana intends to stop hiring smokers, where the action is legally permitted. The company wants to encourage healthy behavior among workers and already has a policy of not hiring smokers in southwestern Ohio.

According to the United States Postal Service, 40 letter carriers in Louisville were attacked by dogs in 2010. That makes us 4th on the list of cities with the most attacks. The Postal Service says 5,669 postal workers were attacked nationwide in 2010. The announcement coincides with National Dog Bite Prevention Week (May 15-21).  The annual event seeks to raise awareness for attack prevention and responsible pet ownership. Around 4.7 million Americans are bitten annually, most of them being children.