Four years ago, the U.S. economy was beginning to take a dive, bad weather made it difficult for farmers to feed their horses, and domestic horse slaughter came to a halt. Essie Rogers of the Kentucky Horse Council says not much has changed in the number of unwanted and neglected horses.
Despite months of meetings on a proposed fairness ordinance and human rights commission, members of the Berea city council still say they’re taking the “first step” on the issue. In May, the council first considered passing an ordinance banning discrimination based on sexual orientation and creating a commission to educate the public. A subcommittee was formed to research and inform the rest of the council on the two ideas.
Officials say another discovery of crude oil under southern Kentucky’s Wolf Creek Dam will not delay the long-term plan to fix leaks in the dam. The oil was found in a core sample taken from the earthen dam last week. The Army Corps of Engineers is in the midst of a project launched in 2006 to prevent the dam, which impounds Lake Cumberland, from failing.
A spokesman with the U-S Postal Service says the agency is about to conduct a study to see if some of the duties handled by the Lexington Processing and Distribution Center could be performed more efficiently at the Louisville plant. David Walton says such "Area Mail Processing" studies are going on all across the country.
A Corbin man and an Illinois woman died Friday morning after a van traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of Interstate 75 crashed head-on into a passenger car, authorities said. Joseph Vardeman, 38, of Corbin was driving the van, said Madison County Coroner Jimmy Cornelison. Amy Adkins, 26, of East Peoria, Ill. was a passenger who died in a Chevrolet. Investigators have not identified the person who was driving the Chevy. They were taken to University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital in Lexington.
After winning the Jessamine County Fair demolition derby small car division and receiving his trophy Wednesday night, David L. Warner Jr., 36, received something else — a set of handcuffs as Nicholasville police arrested him and charged him with DUI. “He won the demolition derby in the small car division,” Nicholasville police Capt. Chris Cain said. “We had some complaints from officials and the crowd that he was drunk.”
Lincoln County Jailer David Gooch is going after those he claims have defamed him by posting unkind and untrue comments about him anonymously on the gossip website Topix. Gooch filed a lawsuit in Lincoln Circuit Court alleging “unknown defendants intentionally and maliciously published statements on the website Topix with knowledge of their falsity or reckless disregard for the truth or falsity of the statements.” The “false statements” injured Gooch’s personal and professional reputation and caused severe emotional distress, humiliation and embarrassment, the lawsuit maintains.
The $584 million foundation remediation project at Wolf Creek Dam is now more than halfway complete, according to David Hendrix, the Nashville Corps of Engineers project manager, and at 55 percent is still slated for a December 2013 finish. That word came late last week after the Corps invited several media outlets from Russell and surrounding counties as well as a TV news crew from Nashville to take a tour and view work progress on the giant structure.
Lexingtonians got an up-close look at the latest designs for the CentrePointe block downtown Thursday night. Chicago architect Jeanne Gang presented the newly fleshed out CentrePointe designs to a packed house at the Kentucky Theatre Thursday night. The new vision for the block includes a 30-story tower made up of "bundled tubes" inspired by the coral in Kentucky limestone and five smaller structures designed by local architects. After viewing the model in the lobby, Robert Maras, a teacher who has visited other buildings by the architect, said he was excited to see what he considers a truly collaborative effort.
Two people are dead from an early morning traffic crash in Madison County. The accident shut down lanes in I-75 southbound for hours. Kentucky State Police trooper Chris Lanham says the crash was caused by a vehicle going the wrong way.
The cost of health care threatens to break the finances of cities like Lexington. Last year, providing coverage for city worker cost 11-million dollars more than predicted. Other cities are in better shape, but, the executive director at the Kentucky League of Cities says it’s still a struggle. Jon Steiner says increasing health care costs makes it hard to write a budget.
A man who built a 25 year career at the Lexington jail is back in a leadership position there. Ray Sabbatine was announced Thursday as the interim director of Community Corrections. He will take over for retiring director Ron Bishop on July 25.
Robert George, whose body has been in the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital morgue for more than three months, finally will be laid to rest, possibly on Thursday, in Burnside Cemetery in Pulaski County. It's not likely that any of George's relatives, including his children — four sons and a daughter — will be there when his coffin is lowered into the ground, George's son, Robbie George of Texas, said Wednesday. "He's done a lot of very bad things, and the family is not so forgiving," the son said.
When Damon Dunson and Melanie Stamper of Berea woke up one morning last week, they said they couldn't believe that someone had used spray paint and markers to write racial slurs on their vehicles. "I was angry, but at the same time I knew whoever did it was ignorant," said Dunson, who is black. "They spelled the n-word three different ways," said Stamper, his girlfriend, who is white. The message left on Stamper's Jeep, she said, told her to get out of the neighborhood.
Embattled Lexington Fire Chief Robert Hendricks will have to wait a while longer to learn whether he will receive a disability pension from the city. On Wednesday, the Lexington Police and Fire pension board said it needed clarification regarding discrepancies between the two medical evaluation reports presented to the panel. By law, Hendricks is required to be evaluated by two physicians before the board can vote to approve or deny his application.
People are fired up about where and when their neighbors chose to set off fireworks, saying it’s been a month-long barrage of big blasts hitting too close to home at all hours of the night. “I went weeks without sleep,” says Heather Kash, who took her complaint to the Frankfort City Commission during Monday’s work session.
Whitley County Sheriff's deputies discovered three one-step methamphetamine labs early Tuesday evening while answering a complaint about suspicious activity inside a vacant Woodbine house. The caller told police that the home had been boarded up and was suspected to be a drug house, a sheriff's spokesman said. But when police entered the residence, a male escaped through a window. A closer examination of the empty residence turned up two females inside, who were passed out.
Once again Kentucky mine safety officials are asking what could have been done to prevent a death on the job. 26 year old Ryan Thatcher of Salyersville died Monday while working at a Martin County mine. His was the third coal-related death this year. Kentucky Mine Safety and Licensing executive director Johnny Green says tools, technology and regulations are in place to prevent deaths and accidents in the mines. Green traces some problems to miners themselves and those people who supervise them.
A once-loved tradition where community news and events appeared weekly in the local newspaper is being kept alive, at least on a part-time basis. Up until about 20 years ago, nearly every small community in Casey County had a resident who collected local news and sent it each week to The Casey County News. Clarice Floyd was one of about 20 correspondents who did this, but as the years progressed, the correspondents faded away. Floyd, a spry and lively 92, is the last correspondent who still periodically gathers the news of her friends and neighbors in the Mt. Olive community. She became a correspondent in the late 1950s.
Lexington resident Carmen Davis has dreams of running a small business. She and a friend have been researching the possibility of opening a taxi cab company. Davis' efforts came to a screeching halt when she saw Fayette County's current taxi requirements. "I believe I started looking at the ordinance in early June and it was kind of overwhelming because to buy 25 vehicles at one time is a huge investment for a small business owner."
The Kentucky Public Service Commission is sending out another warning in light of a recent uptick in attempted copper thefts from electric substations. Spokesman Andrew Melnykovych says thieves have been targeting utilities because of the perceived chance to make a big score.
Another group is coming forward to voice its concerns about Lexington's latest round of fireworks. Some wildlife advocates say this year's Fourth of July did more than frighten dogs and cats. Nora Ward has rescued eastern cottontail rabbits for the Kentucky Wildlife Center for three years now. In the past, the fireworks had little effect on her animals, but she says this year, with the larger and louder fireworks allowed by state law, things changed. In an emotional plea to the Urban County Council, Ward said the noise was too much.
It's one of the most basic services a government can provide: keeping the street lights on. But it isn't as easy as flipping a switch. Fluctuations in electric bills aren't just a problem for private homes and businesses. When Kentucky Utilities raises its rates, the government has to deal with higher bills too. The Urban Services fund, which, among other things, provides money for Lexington's street lights is running low. And Councilman Kevin Stinnett says a simple tax increase may not solve the problem.
After several contentious meetings on the subject, the Urban County Council voted Tuesday night to establish procedures for reviewing contract agreements reached through collective bargaining. For years the council has debated just what its role should be in agreements reached through collective bargaining. Traditionally, approval of the contracts fell to the mayor's office. But with unfunded pension liabilities mounting, some members of the council see it as their responsibility to review and ultimately agree to the contracts.
Journalist James Fallows is in Louisville today to speak at the Kentucky Chamber’s annual meeting. Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a former editor of U.S. News and World Report, and delivered a speech based on a recent article on the future of coal.
A team of state officials will soon meet with Kentucky Speedway representatives to discuss next year’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Race. Gridlock Saturday meant thousands of ticket holders didn’t see the race. Governor Steve Beshear says his team will get together in the next few days. “I think everyone anticipated that we would have some problems. Obviously nobody anticipated that the parking situation would end up creating the problem that it did,” said Beshear
Officials are investigating another mining fatality in Kentucky. Twenty-six year old Ryan Thatcher of Salyersville died Monday while working at a mine near Inez in Martin County. According to the Energy and Environment Cabinet there were no apparent witnesses to the accident.
With heat indices expected to be in the triple digits again today, the city of Lexington is opening two cooling centers across town to help folks beat the heat. The Dunbar Community Center on Upper Street will be open until 8 p.m. The Lexington Senior Center on the corner of Alumni and Nicholasville Road will stay open until 6 p.m. Lextran is offering free rides for senior citizens to and from the cooling centers. For more information on the free rides, call Lextran at (859) 253-4636.
Lexington might not have experienced the 100-degrees-plus temperatures that swept the Midwest and Southern United States on Monday, but it felt like it. Lexington's heat index exceeded expectations and hit 112 degrees Monday, prompting the National Weather Service in Louisville to issue a heat advisory until 8 p.m. in Central Kentucky. Hot and humid weather was expected to continue into Tuesday, although scattered showers and thunderstorms could help cool things down late Tuesday afternoon, meteorologist Mike Crow said.
FRANKFORT – Kentucky mining investigators worked overnight to determine the cause of Kentucky’s latest mining fatality. Ryan K. Thatcher, 26, of Salyersville died Monday when he suffered head injuries while working at the Voyager No. 7 mine near Inez in Martin County. The mine is owned by Martin County Coal Corp.