The Commonwealth

6:35am

Mon October 21, 2013
The Commonwealth

Growth in Big Rivers Wildlife

Credit forestry.ky.gov

A massive addition to the Big Rivers Wildlife Management Area and State Forest in western Kentucky will be dedicated this week.  Officials with the Kentucky Division of Forestry and the state Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources will meet lawmakers, local officials, funding partners and others at the 42 hundred-acre property Wednesday.

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6:47am

Mon October 14, 2013
The Commonwealth

I-64 Bridge Work Likely to Cause Traffic Tieups

Credit courier-journal.com

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says motorists should expect heavy traffic delays on Interstate 64 in Franklin County this week.  Engineers will be inspecting bridges over the Kentucky River. Equipment problems and the need to have power shut down on some nearby electrical lines have delayed the work.

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3:49pm

Wed October 9, 2013
The Commonwealth

Canada Fire Considers Kentucky for a Hemp Plant

Credit kentucky.com

Kentucky is in the running to land a hemp processing plant being considered by a Canadian company. The CEO of Hemp Oil Canada says Kentucky has hemp-growing heritage but questions about the plant's legality have to be resolved.

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6:36am

Mon October 7, 2013
The Commonwealth

Anti-Corruption Summit Planned in Northern Kentucky

Credit courier-journal.com

Kentucky state auditor Adam Edelen plans to hold a summit in northern Kentucky to address corruption after a multitude of cases in the area. The Kentucky Enquirer reports that Edelen plans to speak with public and local elected leaders about how to catch the misuse of public funds.

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3:37pm

Thu October 3, 2013
The Commonwealth

Tolls Would Also Fund New Northern Kentucky Bridge

Interstates 75/71 as they pass over the Brent Spence Bridge from Northern Kentucky and into Cincinnati.
Credit Friscocali / Flickr, Creative Commons

Kentucky and Ohio transportation officials are working to finance a new interstate bridge linking Covington with Cincinnati.  Officials from both states released a report identifying funding options today.  Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Spokesman Chuck Wolfe says the 50 year old Brent Spence remains sound and would still carry northbound I-71 traffic.

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6:20am

Wed October 2, 2013
The Commonwealth

Basic Services at Kentucky Military Posts Continue

Credit en.wikipedia.org

Officials at Kentucky's two major Army posts say basic services such as utilities, public safety and hospital emergency services are still functioning despite a partial government shutdown. Fort Knox Garrison Commander Col. T.J. Edwards says some civilian employees have received furlough notices, but soldiers and other essential personnel are still on duty.

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9:43am

Fri September 27, 2013
The Commonwealth

Prison Reforms Still Concern Some Kentucky Prosecutors

Credit Thomas Musgrave / The News-Graphic

Reforms to Kentucky’s criminal justice system still concern some prosecutors.  Lawmakers this week celebrated their success, saying the law reduced prison populations, cut corrections costs and enhanced drug treatment programs. While it’s a step in the right direction, Russell and Wayne County Commonwealth’s Attorney Matthew Leveridge has a problem with deferred prosecution.  Leverage says it puts some accused drug possession offenders back on the street, without any penalty.

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5:32am

Fri September 20, 2013
The Commonwealth

Brilliant Autumn Foliage Never A Sure Thing

Eastern Kentucky's Red River Gorge.
Credit Marcel Holyoak / Flitckr, Creative Commons

It’s just about crunch time as Kentucky’s trees take on their autumn colors.  Big Bone Lick State Park Manager Dean Henson says the peak viewing period for fall foliage is almost always the second and third weeks of October.  It’s been a good year for rainfall, but Henson says weather conditions now are key in helping to make leaf colors radiant.

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7:17am

Mon September 16, 2013
The Commonwealth

Review Shows Problems in Kentucky Bridges

Credit kentuckyroads.com

Federal records show more than 100 bridges across Kentucky have advanced deterioration and are at risk of collapsing.  The head of the state’s transportation agency blames the situation largely on more and heavier traffic than existed when the bridges were first built.

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6:49am

Mon August 19, 2013
The Commonwealth

Higher Deer and Elk Hunting Licenses Proposed

Credit surfky.com

Kentucky’s Fish and Wildlife Commission is seeking fee increases for some licenses and permits.  The request doesn’t impact basic hunting and fishing licenses for Kentucky adults.  Among the changes being proposed by the Commission is to increase the deer permit for residents five dollars and the deer permit for non-residents one hundred dollars.

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12:14pm

Thu August 15, 2013
The Commonwealth

Wolf Confirmation in Kentucky

Credit animals.nationalgeographic.com

Officials with Kentucky’s Fish and Wildlife Department say federal authorities have confirmed a gray wolf was killed earlier this year in the Commonwealth.  The state agency says wolves have been virtually gone from Kentucky since the mid 1800’s.  It’s a mystery as to how the endangered animal wound up in Hart County in March.

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10:44am

Wed August 7, 2013
The Commonwealth

Steve Nunn's Ex-Wife Launches Her Book

Tracey Damron.
Credit Lexington Herald Leader

The ex-wife of a former Kentucky lawmaker serving life without parole for murdering another woman is launching her book Wednesday. Tracey L. Damron was married to former Rep. Steve Nunn, the son of the late former governor Louie B. Nunn, while he served in state government. A news release says the book, "Trail of Feathers," covers "love, death, murder, political power, deception, the supernatural and ultimately spiritual consciousness."

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9:21am

Fri August 2, 2013
The Commonwealth

Upgrades Federally Funded At Three Kentucky Airports

Military aircraft takes off from Frankfort's Capitol City Airport.
Credit Kentucky National Guard

Three Kentucky airports are sharing more than $1 million in federal grants. The grants will go to the Fleming-Mason Airport in Flemingsburg, the Marion-Crittenden County Airport and Frankfort's Capitol City Airport. The money was awarded by the Federal Aviation Administration, and it will cover a large percentage of the project costs.

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9:13am

Fri August 2, 2013
The Commonwealth

Court Could Resurrect Horse Slaughter In The United States

Racehorse rescued from slaughterhouse by American Humane Society.
Credit The American Humane Society

A federal judge in Albuquerque is expected to decide Friday whether companies in New Mexico and Iowa can begin slaughtering horses next week. The Humane Society of the United States and others are requesting a restraining order to block Valley Meat Co. of Roswell, N.M., and Responsible Transportation in Sigourney, Iowa, from opening their slaughterhouses as planned on Monday.

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8:51am

Wed July 31, 2013
The Commonwealth

Does Kentucky Law Exempt A Same-Sex Spouse From Testifying?

A Kentucky judge is seeking input from the state attorney general's office before deciding whether a law exempting spouses from testifying against each other applies to two women in a civil union from Vermont. Jefferson Circuit Court Judge Susan Schultz Gibson says the attorney general's office should be given a chance to respond.

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6:40am

Mon July 29, 2013
The Commonwealth

Juvenile Jailed for Non-Criminal Offenses Decline

Far fewer Kentucky children are spending time in jail for such things as skipping school and running away from home.  The Courier Journal reports Judges across the Commonwealth have cut in half the number of kids they are incarcerating for non-criminal offenses.  The data comes from the Kentucky Youth Advocates.  It shows the number of jailed juveniles fell from almost 23 hundred in 2007 to just under 11 hundred last year.

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6:36am

Mon July 29, 2013
The Commonwealth

Western Kentuckians Benefit from Military Health Care

Licensed medical professionals in the military are offering free medical care to western Kentucky residents.  The Paducah Sun reports the program ‘Innovative Readiness Training’ provides medical screening, non-emergency medical treatment, minor lab tests, optometry exams, and free glasses.  The program will begin taking patients next week in Mayfield.

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12:10pm

Fri July 26, 2013
The Commonwealth

Couple Challenges Kentucky's Ban On Same-Sex Marriage

Credit City of West Hollywood

A Louisville couple on Friday challenged Kentucky's ban on same-sex marriages, saying the state isn't putting them and other same-sex couples on equal footing with other married couples. Gregory Bourke and Michael Deleon are asking a federal judge in Louisville to require the state to recognize valid unions from other states and countries.

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2:21pm

Tue July 23, 2013
The Commonwealth

Ohio Judge Issues Restraining Order In Gay Marriage Lawsuit

Jim Obergefell (on right) and his attorney Al Gerhardstein exit the federal courthouse after presenting their case Monday.
Credit Holly Yurchison / WVXU News

Judge Timothy Black has granted the temporary restraining order. This means Ohio is now prohibited, in the event of John Arthur's death, from issuing a death certificate that doesn't indicate that he was married and name his spouse. Saying it's unconstitutional to single out a group of people just because the have differing views, Federal Judge Timothy Black promised to act expeditiously Monday in the case of a Cincinnati same-sex couple married in Maryland who want their marriage recognized in Ohio.  Read more...

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8:37am

Tue July 16, 2013
The Commonwealth

Heavy Rain Leaves Tobacco Crop Down, But Not Out

Eastern Kentucky tobacco field.
Credit Sendai9193 / Flickr, Creative Commons

Heavy rains around the Fourth of July seriously damaged burley tobacco fields in the Bluegrass.  Some fields were flooded when several inches of rain fell in just a few hours.  Other fields, given the wet, cool weather, have struggled all season. Steve Pratt manages the Burley Tobacco Growers Cooperative.

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7:17am

Mon July 8, 2013
The Commonwealth

Kentucky-Grown Watermelons Late, But Should Be Worth The Wait

Credit University of Kentucky

Locally grown watermelons are about to make their first appearance this season at Kentucky’s farmers’ markets.  Although not in the same league as watermelon growers in many southern states, the Commonwealth produces quite a few melons.  University of Kentucky Horticulturalist John Strang says it’s a delicacy that Kentuckians crave.

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6:45am

Fri July 5, 2013
The Commonwealth

More Rainy Waves Anticipated

Credit weather.bloginkentucky.com

Instead of fireworks, lightning will likely light up the skies over the Commonwealth this holiday weekend.  Rain and thunderstorms remain a strong possibility.  So far in 20-13, much of Kentucky has experienced cool, damp weather conditions.  Still, on Wednesday of this week, University of Kentucky Agricultural Meteorologist Matt Dixon said it was dryer than it was in 20-11.

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11:26am

Wed July 3, 2013
The Commonwealth

Pyrotechnics Fly, Explode Freely in Most of Kentucky

Weather permitting, most Kentuckians will enjoy a full array of fireworks this holiday weekend.  For over a year, state law has permitted exploding and flying pyrotechnics. State Fire Marshall Bill Swope says the only exceptions are larger cities that have enacted tougher local ordinances.

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11:08pm

Tue June 25, 2013
The Commonwealth

James Kay wins Special House Election; Maintains Democratic Majority

Credit Lexington Herald Leader

A rookie Democrat will represent Woodford, Franklin, and Fayette Counties in Frankfort. The election of Attorney James Kay also maintains his party’s majority in Kentucky’s lower house.  Three candidates vied for the vacant seat in Tuesday’s special election.   James Kay defeated Republican Lyen Crews and Independent John Mark Hack.  The 30 year old Kay believes his youth was an advantage.

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3:24pm

Thu June 20, 2013
The Commonwealth

Special Session Set for August 19th

Credit kentucky.com

Governor Beshear is calling lawmakers back to Frankfort the end of this summer to tackle legislative and judicial redistricting.    The session will begin on August 19th in Frankfort.  Governor Beshear says leaders in both chambers have indicated a willingness to use the same census numbers for redrawing legislative and judicial boundaries as were used for Congressional redistricting in 2012.  So, the governor is not including Congressional redistricting on the agenda for the upcoming special session.

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3:56pm

Wed June 19, 2013
The Commonwealth

State Gets part of Illegal Gambling Court Settlement

Credit pokernews.com

Kentucky is receiving more than six million dollars for its efforts to curb unregulated online gambling across the state.  The court settlement comes following action taken in 2008 when the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet filed suit.  The legal action was aimed at seizing 141 domain names used to conduct unauthorized and unlicensed internet gambling in Kentucky.  It was the first lawsuit of its kind in the country.

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5:53pm

Tue June 18, 2013
The Commonwealth

I-75 Ramp Work Could Impact Area Businesses

Interstate ramp maintenance in Madison County could impact traffic and businesses along I-75 over the next week or so.  Crews are working to mill, resurface, and restripe ramps at three interstate exits.  Jack Wyatt has operated a gas station at one exit for 33 years.  He says most previous repair work hasn’t carried as big an impact.  “I mean they widen the roads out front, put a new bridge in, but they didn’t, it didn’t slow traffic down that much, cause they always had lanes of traffic they were working on, but they had other lanes of traffic that was open,” said Wyatt.  Kentucky Transportation Department Spokeswoman Natasha Lacy says ramps will not be shut down for extended periods of time.  She says the plan calls for three to four closures during each day of work.

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11:17am

Tue June 11, 2013
The Commonwealth

Bardstown Police Receive Death Threats

In the wake of the killing of one of their own officers, Bardstown Police are now dealing with threats against other cops. Police Chief Rick McCubbin said this morning that his department received multiple threats — by letter, phone and social media. "They were non-specific threats," he said, explaining that they did not name particular officers. McCubbin said police have no suspects as to who sent the letter. "The specific language, I can't put out, but the basic gist of them was that there were more to come," he said. "We're going to treat them as if they're credible."  Read more...

2:23pm

Thu May 30, 2013
The Commonwealth

Hundreds Gather In Bardstown To Mourn Slain Officer

Credit Lexington Herald Leader

  BARDSTOWN — On the seventh anniversary of taking the oath as a Bardstown police officer, Jason Ellis was laid to rest Thursday after a funeral that drew law enforcement officers from surrounding states. Police from Chicago, Pennsylvania, Ohio and all over Kentucky were among those who attended the funeral at Parkway Baptist Church, just off Blue Grass Parkway in Bardstown. Hundreds of police cruisers and other emergency vehicles made the 20-mile procession to the rural cemetery in Chaplin where Ellis was buried. The route was lined with American flags flapping in the breeze.  Read more...

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10:04am

Thu May 30, 2013
The Commonwealth

Summer-like Heat continues until Sunday

Credit Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Summer-like heat continues today before we cool down and see some rain this weekend. It will be partly sunny later with a high of 87 degrees. There’s a slight, 20 percent chance for showers and thunderstorms this afternoon and tonight before 9 p.m. The overnight low will hover around 69. The chance for rain and thunderstorms increases to 50 percent on Friday. It will be partly sunny with a high of 86. More rain could fall Friday night into Saturday morning. Saturday will remain balmy and in the mid-80s. We could see severe thunderstorms develop Saturday afternoon and night. The main threat will be winds gusting up to 60 mph and quarter-size hail.  Read more...

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