Area sellers of live and live-cut Christmas trees say they are selling fewer than in the past. Opinions differ regarding why that change is occurring. John Effinger, owner and manager of Frank Otte Nursery on Ring Road in Elizabethtown, thinks allergies are to blame. His grandchildren’s allergies are why he and his wife had to buy an artificial tree after bringing live-cut trees into their home every year as they raised their own children. “I think the environment is too clean today,” he said.
December’s the month when Lexington officials scrutinize city revenues with a sharp pencil. It’s marks the halfway point in the fiscal year. Lexington Finance Commissioner Jane Driskoll says their review of revenues will help them if budget adjustments are needed in 20-12. “We can see where we are to date and can make projections for the end of the year, so six months into it is a good touchstone and a good place to pause and determine if we need to make any changes for the rest of the year,” said Driskoll.
Shopping for the holidays is moving right along , and Kentuckians are again being urged to buy local. Such purchases are good for the local economy and the environment. December has been designated by the state as ‘Give a Gift in Kentucky Month.” Many of those gifts are bought at the Kentucky Artisan Center, just off I-75 near Berea. Since its opening eight years ago, center executive director Victoria Faoro says the diversity of gifts has grown.
An immigration expert is touting two Louisville-area projects throughout India giving foreign investors the opportunity to gain expedited green cards in exchange for investing in either project. Dr. Sudhir Shah has finished touring the old Colgate factory in Clarksville and the RobinBrooke Place senior living facility in Elizabethtown. Shah now plans on hosting several seminars throughout India to promote both projects to hundreds of foreign investors who have put their trust in Shah’s expertise.
- The Postal Service's Processing and Distribution Center in Lexington is among 252 centers targeted for closure as the USPS looks to consolidate its facilities. But the public will get a chance to have their say about the proposal at a meeting tonight.
For the past four years, folks eating out in Harrodsburg have paid an extra 3 cents for every dollar they dropped in local restaurants, with that additional money going to help fund tourism activities in Mercer County. On Tuesday evening, the Harrodsburg City Commission is hosting a forum to let residents and restaurant owners air out their feelings about the 3 percent restaurant tax created by the commission in 2007.
The Daily NewsAs shoppers rush to snag discounts Friday, officials warn that it’s peak season for scam artists. “We hear from people every day that have been scammed one way or another. Scam artists come out of the woodwork during a time like this,” said Reanna Smith-Hamblin, spokeswoman for the Better Business Bureau’s Louisville office. “Especially during tough times, you get excited you found something good at a good price.” In some cases, that price is too good to be true. People should be cautious of fake advertising and make sure they carefully read an entire ad, especially the fine print, Smith-Hamblin said.
Although Christmas merchandise encroaches deeper into the fourth quarter of the calendar, Black Friday still is considered the traditional opening to the Christmas shopping season, and local retailers have ramped up their efforts to go after consumers’ dollars. Walmart will begin its Black Friday early — on Thursday — with its Black Friday deals beginning at 10 p.m. Thanksgiving day. The store will be open all day Thursdsay.
The sights and sounds of Sam’s Restaurant are familiar to many Scott Countians. Soon thousands of music fans are going to be privy to the charms of the already-famous eatery. Standing out one morning last week among the regulars taking their place at the bar and the waitresses delivering plates stacked high with pancakes or crispy onion rings, were two shiny black video cameras, their operators and director Dale Hufana.
The population in and around Lexington will swell significantly this weekend. ‘Black Friday,’ which kicks off to the Christmas shopping season, will bring shoppers from around the region to Lexington. Lexington police patrol officer Pat McBride says officers will be on hand to reduce traffic congestion around shopping malls. Still, McBride says patience is key. “Wait behind the stop bar…the big white stripe…wait behind the stop bar…until enough space opens up in front of you..to pull forward,” said McBride.
The effort to link Lexington and Louisville together economically officially moved out of the gate today. The move to push advanced manufacturing in both Lexington and Louisville comes from their two mayors. The Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement Board met for the first time in Frankfort. They’re pursuing a model promoted by the Brookings Institute, which is a think tank.
Daicel Safety Tube Processing, a Japanese automotive components manufacturer, will locate a new manufacturing facility in Beaver Dam, creating 25 new jobs. The $8.8 million investment represents the third Daicel plant to locate in Beaver Dam, bringing the company’s total Kentucky employment to 525.
The partnership between Louisville and Lexington known as BEAM—the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement—will begin to take shape soon. This afternoon, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Lexington Mayor Jim Gray will announce the BEAM board and lead the first board meeting.
Occupy Louisville has finished a week of events to raise awareness of its cause and demonstrators are now planning actions that take their concerns to city government, but details are being kept quiet. Around a dozen demonstrators helped kick off the final day of Seven Days of Solidarity. Each day has focused on a particular theme or issue; Saturday involved discussions around Kentucky’s coal industry.
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.
Fujio Cho, a respected former leader of Georgetown's Toyota plant, visited the Bluegrass this weekend to celebrate the automaker's 25 years here. Cho led the plant from December 1988, less than six months after it began regular automotive assembly, to October 1994. He is now chairman of all of Toyota's operations. In the past quarter century, Toyota has opened 14 assembly plants in North America.
Two acquisitions since last year by Lexmark International have continued to move the Lexington company further from its roots in printers only and more into computer software and services. Foreshadowing much change in the printer industry, behemoths including Hewlett-Packard have followed suit and snapped up competitors in the realm of what's called enterprise content management. The name is complicated, but the idea is simple. Printer companies are working to make themselves invaluable to businesses by getting more involved in the flow of information, regardless of whether it ever shows up on a printed page.
One expert who helps develop America’s Monetary policy believes full economic recovery is still ‘years away.’ Sandra Pianalto brought her message today to Lexington Rotarians. Pianalto, who’s President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, admits the economic recovery has been ‘frustratingly slow.’ She says nine million jobs were lost with only one million back restored. Pianalto says some economists fear ‘structural un-employment’ is here to stay.
A bronze fixture believed to be the one stolen from the Pennyroyal Area Museum was recently found in a Clarksville, Tenn., salvage yard. People from the museum began calling salvage yards in the area, said Janet Bravard, interim director at the museum, and a man at the yard in Clarksville was certain he had the piece. It is a little damaged, Bravard said, but after it is repaired, the entire lamppost should be fixed and returned to its home in front of the museum on Ninth Street.
Take out your credit or debit card: Does it display a WiFi icon, which looks like the volume signal on your sound system? A bit of text that says something like "PayWave"? Congratulations: You're now prime identity-theft bait.
The Louisville Metro region has joined the ranks of hundreds of other metropolitan areas that have partnered public transportation with Google. Passengers can now click a public transit option on Google Maps to find the closest scheduled Transit Authority of River City (TARC) route to their destination. Users will be given three departure times for this route.
State officials Wednesday announced GR Spring & Stamping, an automotive parts supplier, will expand its Richmond facility. The company will invest $1.7 million to increase square footage and will add 25 employees over the next few years.
The musicians of the Louisville Orchestra have rejected the latest contract offer from management. The impasse peaked late last month, when the players declined an offer to sign all the musicians who remained in Louisville but cut the orchestra to 55 members by June 2013. They differed on how many players should be hired up front and how long the cuts should take. The management then began seeking replacement musicians.
Downtown Lexington's confusing pattern of one-way streets might soon be a thing of the past, as the city moves to implement one of Mayor Jim Gray's first promises upon taking office. Last week, the city advertised for consultants to submit detailed plans to convert the four pairs of one-way streets back to two-way traffic: Short and Second, Main and Vine, High and Maxwell, and Upper and Limestone.
ACS is hiring 200 new full-time, permanent call-center employees in Lexington. The company, which specializes in providing services to other businesses, is bolstering its operations for a consumer-electronics company. The company doesn't publicly identify its customers. The company plans to hire the employees quickly, and it already has begun to hire some.
Today marks the beginning of Global Entrepreneurship Week - and this year Lexington is taking part. Nearly 24-thousand organizations will host more than 37-thousand events around the world this week to help aspiring entrepreneurs. One local business eager to tout the resources available in Lexington is an online game design company called Frogdice.
After more than 37 years in Barbourville, a manufacturing plant is set to close, leaving around 200 area workers without jobs. Employees at TruSeal Technologies learned that the plant will be closed August 2012. The company is moving its manufacturing operations to a facility in Cambridge, Ohio.
The new $5.2 million call center that Kentucky Utilities Co. just opened in Morganfield is central to addressing customer service problems at KU and a sister company, a new audit conducted on behalf of the state Public Service Commission declares. The 23,000-square-foot center opened Oct. 31 with a staff of 35, including 32 customer service representatives, two coaches and a manager, according to Chip Keeling, a spokesman for KU and Louisville Gas & Electric Co.
Residents who have insurance provided by Anthem probably won’t be able to use Walgreens after the first of the year. Anthem’s third-party administrator for pharmacy claims, Express Scripts, has failed to reach an agreement with Walgreens to include the chain in its networks. Express Scripts is the administrator for Anthem corporate and individual plans, as well as for its Medicare Part D prescription plans.