Business and the Economy

2:36pm

Sun November 20, 2011
Business and the Economy

As Lexmark Evolves, Focus Moves from Printers to Software

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.

1:33pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Business and the Economy

Occupy Wall Street March Hits Two Months

Ruby Layson, right, and Dawn Hale stand by the road and hold up signs on the Singing Bridge.
Tricia Spaulding Frankfort State Journal

Some honked in support. Others waved. A few simply drove across Frankfort's Singing Bridge as about 15 demonstrators held signs in support of Occupy Wall Street and the 99 percent movement.

4:15pm

Thu November 17, 2011
Business and the Economy

Economic Recovery "Years Away"

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.

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11:28am

Thu November 17, 2011
Business and the Economy

Missing Bronze Fixture Found in Salvage Yard

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.

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11:14am

Thu November 17, 2011
Business and the Economy

I-D Theft on the Rise and Underreported

A device that can be used to steal radio-frequency tags from credit cards was shown with a fake card at a seminar Tuesday for Kentucky law enforcement professionals.
Charles Bertram, Lexington Herald-Leader

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.

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12:42pm

Wed November 16, 2011
Business and the Economy

Louisville Region Partners Public Transportation with Google

Google

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.

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12:34pm

Wed November 16, 2011
Business and the Economy

Richmond Auto Parts Supplier Expands

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.

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10:21am

Wed November 16, 2011
Business and the Economy

Louisville Orchestra Musicians Reject Latest Contract

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.

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12:23pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Business and the Economy

Downtown Lexington Streets Go Two-Way

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.

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12:21pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Business and the Economy

ACS to Hire 200 Full-Time Workers

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.

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3:35pm

Mon November 14, 2011
Business and the Economy

Lexington Joins Global Entrepreneurship Week

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. 

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9:59am

Mon November 14, 2011
Business and the Economy

Barbourville Plant Closes Next Summer

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.

10:25pm

Sun November 13, 2011
Business and the Economy

New KU Call Center Should Boost Service

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.

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10:09pm

Sun November 13, 2011
Business and the Economy

Insurance Dispute Could Affect Walgreen Customers

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.

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10:26am

Fri November 11, 2011
Business and the Economy

Public Service Commission Announces Plan for Utility Co.

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) has released the detailed action plan outlining how Louisville Gas and Electric Co. (LG&E) and Kentucky Utilities Co. (KU) will make needed improvements in customer service. The document is the companies’ response to an independent consultant’s study which found numerous shortcomings in customer service functions ranging from meter reading to call center operations. The study, known as a focused management and operations audit, made specific recommendations to correct the problems.

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1:28pm

Thu November 10, 2011
Business and the Economy

Improving Service for KU, LGE Customers

Improvements in service are planned for Kentucky Utility and Louisville Gas and Electric customers.  The Kentucky Public Service Commission plan hopes will address numerous customer complaints.  An independent audit found numerous faults with the utilities, ranging from mistaken meter reading to unresponsive call center.  Commission spokesman Andrew Melnykovych predicts KU and LGE customers will notice an improvement.

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10:36am

Tue November 8, 2011
Business and the Economy

More Money for Home Heat

The Cabinet for Health and Family Services Monday announced that $24 million in federal funding has been released to Kentucky to help low-income families heat their homes this winter. The U.S. Department for Health and Human Services released funding for states’ Low Income Home Energy Assistance Programs (LIHEAP), which help families pay their energy bills, particularly during the very cold and hot months.

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9:08am

Tue November 8, 2011
Business and the Economy

Kentucky Agriculture Fears Migrant Labor Loss

The state of Alabama recently passed of the toughest immigration laws to date. As a result, both legal and undocumented migrants have fled the state in droves. Cassidy Herrington reports that Kentucky farmers and workers fear a similar measure would devastate Kentucky's 4.4 billion dollar agriculture industry.
During fall harvest on many Kentucky farms, the majority of hands that will pick the crops these days belong to migrant workers; a group whose labor is no longer welcomed in some parts of the country.

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8:59am

Tue November 8, 2011
Business and the Economy

Kentuckians Leaving Banks for Credit Unions

A national effort to fight big banks led thousands of Kentuckians to move their money over the last month.The Bank Transfer Day movement encouraged Americans to withdraw their money from institutions such as JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America and put it in locally-owned banks or not-for-profit credit unions.

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1:41pm

Fri November 4, 2011
Business and the Economy

Jockeys Guild Asks Churchill Downs Inc. To Contribute

Louisville Public Media

The Jockey’s Guild is asking Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) to reconsider the decision to stop making annual contributions to the guild. The guild provides life insurance and temporary disability insurance to its members. Recently it secured agreements with other racing corporations, but CDI announced earlier this year that it will not contribute in 2012. CDI previously made regular annual payments of $330,000 on behalf of its four tracks, said Terry Meyocks, the national manager for the Jockey’s Guild.

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1:37pm

Fri November 4, 2011
Business and the Economy

New Business Brings Jobs to Somerset

Anacomp, a document and business process management solutions company, will locate a new service facility in Somerset. The new facility will bring 200 new jobs and a more than $2.4 million investment.  Founded in 1968, Anacomp offers document conversion services to support a variety of business applications, including human resources, claims management, retirement benefits and health records. Anacomp will lease space in the Enterprise Center, a multi-tenant facility located in the Valley Oak Technology Complex, which is owned by Southeast Kentucky Economic Development Corp.

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12:13pm

Fri November 4, 2011
Business and the Economy

Louisville Projects $6 Million Deficit for City

Louisville Metro Government is facing a $6 million deficit based on early revenue projections.  Mayor Greg Fischer’s budget allocates $504.2 million for the general fund, but despite higher receipts in the first three months of the fiscal year the city has another financial shortfall.

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10:23am

Fri November 4, 2011
Business and the Economy

Rupp Task Force Developing Alternatives

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.

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10:01am

Wed November 2, 2011
Business and the Economy

Jim Beam Distillery Plans Warehouse Expansion

Jim Beam Brands Company plans to build about 17 new warehouses, and some of them may in the Boston area. Nelson Fiscal Court approved a resolution to offer the company a 30-year property tax exemption if it chooses to build any of those warehouses in Nelson County. Because Jim Beam’s parent company acquired the Maker’s Mark Distillery several years ago, the company is likely to locate its new warehouses in the Boston area and in Loretto, where Maker’s Mark has its distillery. Warehouses are used to store the oak barrels in which bourbon ages.

10:37pm

Tue November 1, 2011
Business and the Economy

Lexington-Louisville Economic Connection

A move to create a more cohesive regional economy connecting Lexington with Louisville continues to churn along.  Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and Louisville Mayor Greg Fisher are talking about ‘advanced manufacturing’ opportunities.  It’s called the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement.  Successful Lexington businessman Jim Host is project chair.  He offered his thoughts to members of the Urban County Council Tuesday.

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4:00pm

Mon October 31, 2011
Business and the Economy

Keeneland Hits a High Mark in Attendance

The just completed fall meet at Keeneland saw the largest number of race fans ever.  Over its 17 days, just over 250-thousand spectators visited the Lexington track.  The previous high mark was set in Spring, 2006 with slightly more than 244-thousand patrons for 15 days of racing.  Keeneland spokeswoman Julie Balog adds the among of money gambled was up nine percent.

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2:36pm

Mon October 31, 2011
Business and the Economy

Co-ops Transition to Smart Meter

Several Kentucky electricity co-ops will begin using a new technology called “smart meters” soon.The devices send energy data to power companies—so there’s no need for someone to travel to read the meter. Smart meters also tell consumers more information than traditional meters. With a glance, ratepayers can see how much electricity they’re using, how much it costs and during what times in the day electricity is cheaper.

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1:34pm

Mon October 31, 2011
Business and the Economy

No Change in Natural Gas Costs this Winter

With wholesale natural gas prices changing little over the last year, Kentucky customers will be paying about the same for comparable quantities of gas this winter, the Kentucky Public Service Commission announced Monday.  “Natural gas prices have remained fairly constant since late 2009, in contrast to the large fluctuations in prior years,” PSC Chairman David Armstrong said in a press release. “Increasing gas supplies should provide a measure of price stability in the coming years as well.”

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1:28pm

Mon October 31, 2011
Business and the Economy

Pike Co. Coal-to-Liquid Plant Projects Questioned

The Buffalo Creek and Chisolm Energy coal-to-liquid plants are barely in existence, currently just plans on paper and a concrete pad at two Pike County sites. The projects, a pair of coal-to-liquid fuel plants proposed to be built in Pike County by the same company proposing a similar project in Mingo County, W.Va., have been on the drawing board since at least January. The plants, if built, will be the biggest economic development project undertaken in the county’s history. But, documents obtained by the News-Express show that the project is already plagued with problems and issues which raise questions about the level of involvement of the county government in the projects.

10:51am

Mon October 31, 2011
Business and the Economy

Kentucky Electric Co-ops Transition to 'Smart Meters'

Several Kentucky electricity co-ops will begin using a new technology called “smart meters” soon.  The devices send energy data to power companies—so there’s no need for someone to travel to read the meter. Smart meters also tell consumers more information than traditional meters. With a glance, ratepayers can see how much electricity they’re using, how much it costs and during what times in the day electricity is cheaper.

Read more

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