Business and the Economy

Business news

Stu Johnson

Progress at the Centre Point building site in the middle of downtown Lexington has some urban county council members asking for government action to help further construction.  

Two commercial developers are now joining together for the high rise office and retail complex.


lexingtonky.gov

Non-profit workforce development organizations can make grant applications for a part of $300,000 in Lexington government funds to assist with job training. 

This second round of funding represents twice the amount distributed previously.


Lexington Leaders Assessing Rural Broadband Options

Sep 25, 2017
kentuckywired.ky.gov

Lexington government leaders are studying the best ways to extend high-speed broadband fiber connectivity in rural areas of Fayette County.

Council's Environmental Quality and Public Works Committee gave the issue attention last week. 


kentucky.com

The closing of three Nicholasville Mexican restaurants Tuesday has an employee of at least one nearby business claiming it was related to an illegal immigration roundup. 

There’s no confirmation yet from federal authorities.


asbury.edu

A private Kentucky private university is launching a workforce development initiative aimed at boosting qualified workers for the film production industry in the state. 

Officials at Asbury University introduced the new Work Ready certificate program Tuesday.


Cheri Lawson

A man who spent three years living in a treehouse that he built in Red River Gorge and then started a treehouse village is being featured on nationwide  TV.

 

 Django  Kroner and The Canopy Crew are in  a pilot for a new TV show on the channel Animal Planet.

Just about six months ago, Cincinnati native Django Kroner gave us a tour of the beginnings of a treehouse village he’s building on private property in Red River Gorge .

uky.edu

Members of the Kentucky Tobacco Research Board are considering potential future uses for burley and dark leaf tobacco grown in the bluegrass state.

Discussion at Monday’s meeting addressed proposed FDA regulation of nicotine levels in tobacco products.


Residents Assess Paint Lick Economic Revitalization

Sep 13, 2017
Stu Johnson

Part 2 of a two-part series

Paint Lick Kentucky is included on the National Register of Historic Places.  The rural town that sits on the Garrard-Madison County line was once home to a business district that featured banking, eating and shopping for groceries. There was even a car dealership.

Almost a year ago, the re-routing of Kentucky Highway 52 significantly changed the community’s landscape, virtually taking the town off the highway map.

But, there’s interest in a new form of business activity. 


Stu Johnson

Following a massive fire in January of 2016, Blue Grass Stockyards officials have cut the ribbon for a new facility in Lexington. 


Kentucky Tourism Cabinet

Kentucky officials are hoping a reminder of a once-popular toy will generate additional visits to the state’s tourist attractions. 

It’s called a MegaViewer and this week it's in the "Pride of the Counties" area at the Kentucky State Fair.  


cfaky.org

Two Kentucky agencies are among 32 organizations nationwide benefiting from almost $17 million in federal funding to help low income-citizens buy fruits and vegetables. 

The assistance goes beyond the purchase of produce.

 


Stu Johnson

A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the grand opening and expansion of a Lexington-based technology company Tuesday.

Fooji Incorporated specializes in brand promotion using familiar tools of social media.


Stu Johnson

Automobile executives from across Kentucky and beyond have been briefed this week on many facets affecting their industry during the annual Autovision conference in Lexington.

Among the topics has been materials used in building today’s vehicles.


Lexington-based Lexmark Incorporated will cut 700 employees from its payroll during the next year. 

The company announced the cuts Tuesday.

The U.S. Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment has awarded The Pennyrile Area Development District nearly $1.7 million for economic development efforts around Fort Campbell. 

The federal government is directing nearly $4 million to two Eastern Kentucky projects in an effort to create jobs and opportunities.

The state’s Energy and Environment Cabinet announced the grants earlier this week. The money from the federal Abandoned Mine Lands Pilot program will fund projects in Prestonsburg in Floyd County and Royalton in Magoffin County.

Hundreds are gathered today in Pikeville, Kentucky, for the Shaping Our Appalachian Region, or SOAR, Innovation summit on revitalizing the economy in Eastern Kentucky.

Part of the emphasis of the SOAR initiative is retraining the region’s workers for jobs away from the coal industry, which has imploded in recent years. And one of the solutions that has emerged is a burgeoning technology sector.

Unemployment Rates Up In 96 Kentucky Counties

Jul 28, 2017

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky officials say unemployment rates have increased in 96 of the state’s 120 counties between June 2016 and June 2017.

The state Office of Employment and Training says the unemployment rate fell in 20 counties during that period and stayed the same in four counties.

The agency says Woodford County had the state’s lowest jobless rate at 3.8 percent. It was followed by Shelby County at 4.2 percent and Oldham County and Spencer counties at 4.3 percent each.

During a legislative hearing Thursday, lawmakers expressed anger over the delayed launch and uncertain financial outlook of KentuckyWired, a broadband internet program that is supposed to stretch fiber optic cable to every county in the state.

The initiative has been hampered by difficulties in setting up agreements with owners of telephone poles that the fiber optic wire needs to hang from.

kyfb.com

The president of the Kentucky Farm Bureau has offered suggestions as Congress works to adopt a new federal farm bill. 

Mark Haney appeared this week before the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry.


Moody’s has downgraded Kentucky’s credit rating because of the low funding level of the state’s pension systems and lackluster revenue gleaned from taxes.

The news comes after the state missed its own revenue prediction by $135 million at the end of the last fiscal year, which finished on June 30.

Kentucky’s seasonally-adjusted preliminary unemployment rate for June 2017 was 5.1 percent, according to the state's Office of Employment and Training.

The June  rate was up one tenth of a percentage point from the five percent reported in May.


Cheri Lawson

The City of Williamstown has rejected the latest request by the Ark Encounter theme park to reduce the amount of a new “safety assessment fee.”

Earlier this year, the city imposed a per-ticket charge of 50 cents to cover the cost of increased police and fire services.


A member of the Federal Communications Commission will visit the Ohio Valley on Tuesday to hear from rural communities who lack broadband internet access.

Kentucky Horse Park Hosts Model Horse Fest

Jul 14, 2017
kentuckytourism.com

For the 28th consecutive year, thousands of people are converging on the Kentucky Horse Park this weekend to see and show off model horses. 

This year's Breyer Fest features an India theme.

In addition to "live" and model horse activities for collectors and visitors, the three-day festival includes a focus on cultural aspects of India.  BreyerFest participants can take in Bollywood dancing, tent-pegging, and polo.  


Cheri Lawson

 

A controversial theme park in Grant County is celebrating its first anniversary. But, so far, the Ark Encounter hasn’t floated everybody’s boat.

Taking pictures at the park’s entrance under an amusement park sized orange sign with big white letters announcing "ARK Encounter," the Botcher family from South Milwaukee is enthusiastic about their vacation in Kentucky.

 

"It’s The Ark so we’re hoping to see the size and get to see some of the animals inside."

 

lexingtonky.gov

A golf is recommending several significant changes in how Lexington operates its five  public golf courses.

The suggestions discussed at Tuesday’s council work session include increasing greens fees, keeping only Picadome golf course open during the winter, and changing senior golfer discount eligibility.


A Kentucky hotel would have hosted two conventions that reportedly pulled out of negotiations due to California's state-funded travel ban, the hotel's general manager said.

"We received calls from each convention withdrawing from negotiations due to the California ban," Omni Louisville Hotel General Manager Scott Stuckey said in a release Saturday. "We have used discretion in discussing the issue and have not identified the conventions, in hopes that we could persuade them to do business with Omni and Louisville in the future."

Kentucky’s bourbon industry could find itself in the middle of a potential trade war between the United States and the European Union.

Stu Johnson

For the first time, the Extreme Mustang Makeover is taking place in central Kentucky. 

The competition brings trainers and their mustang horses to the All-Tech Arena to demonstrate disciplined maneuvers after just 100 days together.


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