City officials in Lexington say they are ready for whatever Mother Nature might bring this winter. Sam Williams, director of the city's Division of Streets and Roads, says nearly 7,000 tons of salt is on hand and more is on order. "Historical projections are that we use about 12 to 15,000 tons in a typical winter. So we plan for that."
Inauguration ceremonies for Governor Steve Beshear and Lt. Governor-elect Jerry Abramson are less than a week away and organizers are making final preparations. Bob Stewart, Executive Director of the 2011 Inaugural Committee, says work has shifted from planning to execution.
A new report on the condition of roughly a third of public school buildings in Kentucky estimates that total repair and improvement needs would cost $3.7 billion dollars. Department of Education spokeswoman Lisa Gross says evaluations were conducted at 477 buildings across the state.
The Christmas decorations at Ashland, the Henry Clay Estate in historic Lexington will be big and bright this year. The National Historic Landmark dedicated to honoring Kentucky statesman Henry Clay celebrates the Christmas season with d cor throughout the mansion.
The product of 40 years of work by scientists and researchers with the U.S. and Kentucky Geological Surveys was unveiled in Lexington Thursday: a composite of 25 maps detailing surface rock types, formations, and fault lines across the state. State Geologist Jim Cobb says the effort was built on several decades of data. "It's a very labor-intensive process. So it's not easy. It takes people, human resources, and computers," said Cobb.
A clinical music therapist at UK's Chandler Hospital is taking her expertise to the classroom with the launch of a new graduate program. Dr. Lori Gooding uses singing and her guitar to help her patients reduce pain and anxiety.
Millions of Kentuckians gather around the dinner table tomorrow to celebrate Thanksgiving. It can be an especially emotional time of year for military veterans. Kentucky Public Radio’s Brenna Angel talks with Lieutenant Colonel Shontelle Adams of the Kentucky National Guard’s 198th Military Police Battalion about what he’s thankful for.
Kentucky lawmakers will again take up the issue of meth production and pseudoephedrine. The legislature has considered making cold and allergy medication that contains pseudoephedrine prescription-only, but that proposal failed. "We had U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers come and testify about why it should be made prescriptive. [He] certainly made a good argument. However I was not persuaded at that point that that was the solution," says Rep. Brent Yonts (D-Greenville).
Local supermarkets are luring in customers to do their Thanksgiving meal shopping with low prices on the main dish: the turkey. The American Farm Bureau Federation released its annual survey last week on the average cost of a Thanksgiving dinner, up 13 percent to $49.20 this year. But for many cooks looking for what they consider a healthier and more flavorful turkey, $49 will be the cost of just the bird.
The Kentucky Horse Council is joining the University of Kentucky, the University of Louisville, and industry groups in conducting an all-breed equine survey. The $600,000 survey was approved Thursday by the Kentucky Agricultural Development Board.
Lexington is getting a taste of New York's Rockefeller Plaza. This Saturday an outdoor ice skating rink will open at Triangle Park. Renee Jackson with the Downtown Lexington Corporation says it's an idea that community leaders have talked about for years. "You know we've been exploring places to put one and costs associated with it, and all different things. But this was one of the things that when the Triangle Foundation decided to completely overhaul the park, they were going to make it happen."
The city of Lexington plans to close a more than 30 year old landfill by the end year. Division of Environmental Policy spokesman Mark York says there is simply no more room in the Haley Pike landfill. "That was actually the site of a city municipal landfill for years and we stopped sending city trash there back in 1995. And since 1995 we've only allowed construction and demolition debris material to be put in the landfill there."
The University of Kentucky’s Center for Applied Energy Research has begun work on a facility that could someday lead to changes in where and how the U.S. fuels transportation needs. Center director Rodney Andrews says the $5.7 million building will serve as a process development unit.
A federal judge in Lexington is considering whether a Croatian woman who fought in the Yugoslav Wars should be extradited to Bosnia. Azra Basic, 52, walked into U.S. District Court Monday in a teal green inmate uniform, more than seven months after she was arrested in connection with war crimes in the former Yugoslavia. Officials in Bosnia want the woman -- who served in the Croatian Army and eventually moved to Powell County, Kentucky -- returned to Europe to face the charges.
Some new colorful quilt designs will soon be dressing up central Kentucky barns. More than 60 counties are part of the Kentucky Quilt Trail, and now Woodford County is joining them. With a small grant from the Kentucky Arts Council, the project's goal is to honor farming and community traditions."Traditionally you find quilts on barns, but today you're finding them throughout your local communities. They can be on historical buildings in your downtown," says Debbie Tichenor, coordinator the Woodford County Quilt Trail.
The project manager for the Rupp Arena, Arts, & Entertainment District Task Force says the group is at a critical point in its effort to re-think downtown Lexington. Stan Harvey says a second public meeting will be held later this month and the task force will release a preliminary district development plan. Harvey says architect Gary Bates is putting together possible scenarios and alternatives for the future of Rupp and the Lexington Center.
When show jumper Christina Kelly rides in the National Horse Show this week, she might be competing with a home-field advantage. Kelly, 18, lives with her parents in Nicholasville. She has competed several times at the Kentucky Horse Park, including in the Alltech Arena. The high point of her summer was the Bluegrass Festival Horse Show, which was in August.
The traffic nightmare is mostly over for Lexington drivers who take Tates Creek Road for their daily commute. Around 4 a.m. Tuesday, a 12-inch pipe ruptured at the intersection of Tates Creek Road and Gainesway Drive. It sent gushing water across several lanes of one of Lexington's major traffic arteries near New Circle Road. Police diverted motorists for seven hours while crews made repairs.
Vendors are readying their displays and decorators are setting out the finishing touches at the Kentucky Horse Park's Alltech Arena. This Wednesday, the National Horse Show will open for the first time in Lexington. For decades the event was held at Madison Square Garden in New York City before moving to Wellington, Florida and Syracuse, New York.
Lexington's Urban County Council has approved spending $3.8 million to soften the increased health insurance costs for city workers. The compromise came after several firefighters and other government employees protested outside City Hall and spoke at the Council's work session on Tuesday. Council member Kevin Stinnett spoke before a packed meeting Thursday night, saying the plan isn't perfect.
For the third year in a row, Kentucky lawmakers will consider the repeal of loophole that has resulted in some lawmakers receiving lifelong annual pensions of more than $100,000. The measure approved six years ago allows state representatives and senators to calculate their legislative pension based on their highest three years of salary, even if that salary came from another state job.
Legislation pre-filed for the 2012 Kentucky General Assembly would allow more special needs students to earn a high school diploma. As the parent of a daughter with a mild mental disability, Sen. Dennis Parrett (D-Elizabethtown) understands the challenges special education students face. At the beginning of the school year, an individual education program is written for each student, which identifies their unique needs and instructional goals.
Lexington residents will likely have another bill to keep track of starting next spring. Kentucky American Water informed local government officials this month that its billing contract with the city will not be renewed. The water company handles the calculation and collection of Lexington's sanitary sewer fee, the water quality fee, and the landfill fee, and includes those items on a single customer water bill. The fees generate about $65 million annually. Lexington pays Kentucky American $1.6 million a year for the service, but the company has canceled its contract.
The success of a weekend volunteer program geared toward closing achievement gaps among African American male students has sparked the creation of a new school in Fayette County. The Carter G. Woodson Academy will open next year as the first all-male school within FCPS, using the Black Males Working Academy as its model.
For 75 years, the park-like ambiance of the Keeneland race track in Lexington has attracted visitors and horse racing fans from across the globe. The central Kentucky atmosphere also has an effect on horsemen. With the fall meet in full swing, Brenna Angel reports on what keeps trainers and jockeys coming back to Keeneland.
The Jockey Club has released the latest thoroughbred breeding statistics for 2011. The figures reflect a continued downward trend. So far this year, 1,935 stallions have covered 36,504 mares in North America. Kentucky remains the top state for thoroughbred breeding, but the number of mares bred in the Bluegrass is down 9% from last year.
Lexington Police have arrested two teenagers in connection with shots being fired and a stabbing near Tates Creek High School Wednesday. Lt. James Curless says a fight at Gainesway Park escalated around 8 am. "There was a total of six people involved in this altercation and disorder. Certain people did certain things and suffered the criminal charges for their actions. Some were students, some were not."
A Fayette County high school is one of 19 schools across the state that are now considered "persistently low-achieving." Bryan Station High School made the list that was released Wednesday after several years of not meeting benchmarks in math and reading based on No Child Left Behind. "What will happen is the state Department of Education will send a team that will do a leadership audit of the school and will work with the staff at our office to determine recommendations of where we might go from here," says Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Tom Shelton.
The central Kentucky community is invited to a public meeting Tuesday evening about the future of downtown Lexington and Rupp Arena. Architect Gary Bates of Space Group will be at the event. He's the man chosen by the Arena, Arts & Entertainment District task force for a design upgrade of Rupp Arena, the Lexington Center, and the surrounding area. Chairman Brent Rice says the task force has spent the past several months gathering information, and hired the consulting firm Global Spectrum.
Embattled Lexington Fire Chief Bob Hendricks will not be allowed to retire on an occupational disability. The police and fire pension board voted unanimously Wednesday to deny the claim, after reviewing reports from three independent doctors.