Mountain Kentucky

Kentucky Mostly Spared From Turbulent Holiday Weather

Dec 28, 2015
en.wikipedia.org

There’s been a significant temperature variance in Kentucky from one section to another in recent days.  A meteorologist with the Jackson National Weather Service office says Kentucky has largely dodged weather related issues so far.  But Chuck Greis says many states west of the commonwealth have not been so lucky.  “We’ve been spared this event for the most part, compared to the rest of the country, especially the southern plains,” said Greis.

Sewer Deal Not Expected to Slow Knott County Project

Dec 23, 2015
wkyt.com

The State Public Service Commission is backing a sewer system transfer in eastern Kentucky.  The PSC order approves the acquisition of the Troublesome Creek Environmental Authority’s sewer system by the Knott County Water and Sewer District.  PSC Spokesman Andrew Melnykovych says the deal will not impact a sewer line extension project.  “Troublesome Creek is gonna continue expanding sewer lines in that highway 80 corridor and once that project is complete, it will turned over to Knott County as well to operate,” explained Melnykovych.

Southeast Kentucky Road Crews Prepare for Snow

Nov 25, 2015
transportation.ky.gov

While temperatures are anticipated to climb over Thanksgiving holiday, workers in the southeastern Kentucky transportation office are still preparing for snow removal duties.  Les Dixon is with the District 11 office. He says preparations have been underway for several weeks. “We’ve been inspecting the snow plows since October along with calibrating the salt spreading equipment,” said Dixon.  “We’ve also been developing snow storm response procedures to keep our district 11 state roads passable during inclement weather.”

Kentucky Adds to ‘Trail Town’ Program

Nov 24, 2015
wkyt.com

 The Harlan County cities of Lynch, Benham, and Cumberland are the newest additions to the Trail town program.  The state run initiative aims to bolster local economies through increased adventure tourism traffic. 

Kentucky Adventure Tourism Assistant Director Seth Wheat says efforts are made to count the number of out of town visitors, but he admits it can be challenging. 

Mountain Parkway Expansion Meeting to Focus on Two Options

Nov 10, 2015
mtnparkway.com

Eastern Kentucky residents will have a chance next week to learn more about options for widening the Mountain Parkway between Salyersville and Prestonsburg.  One option would add two lanes along the existing corridor, and the other would be to develop a new route just north of Kentucky 114.

High Number of Accidents at Red River Gorge

Oct 15, 2015
cincinnati.com

Falls, some with tragic results, have been on the rise in central Kentucky’s Red River Gorge.  Recent accidents have kept members of the Wolfe County Search and Rescue Team busy.

In less than a week, two children went missing, an Ohio man fell to his death, and a female hiker survived a fall.  The Wolfe County Search and Rescue Team responded to two of those accidents.  Deputy Coordinator John May says the number of falls is up this year.  “You know our team specifically responds to 30 to 40 rescues a year and we have already exceeded that,” said May.

uky.edu.com

The Obama Administration has announced more than $14 million in federal grants to coalfields communities around the country. Nearly $6 million of that will go to Kentucky for economic development efforts, to be divided among state government initiatives, nonprofits and counties.

State Park Manager Gives 50-50 Chance of a Colorful Fall

Oct 2, 2015
nature.com

    Mid-October is typically considered the peak period for viewing the changing colors in Kentucky trees.  It’s difficult to predict with any certainty the amount of color coming this fall.

Good Neighbors, Inc.

    It’s been over two months since an eastern Kentucky flash flood claimed lives, homes, and belongings.  The tiny community of Flatgap in Johnson County took a major hit.  WEKU's Stu Johnson visited one family in the area that's still working to pick of the pieces.

nydailynews.com

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A Rowan County deputy clerk issued a marriage license to a same-sex couple Friday morning, ending a months-long protest from the office led by Clerk Kim Davis, who remains in jail on a contempt of court charge.

James Yates and William Smith Jr. were issued the license shortly after the clerk’s office opened in Morehead on Friday:

 

Blaze in Downtown Hazard Under Control, Firefighters Say

Sep 1, 2015
Erin Joseph / The Hazard Herald

A large structure fire in downtown Hazard continued to burn but was under control by 11:10 a.m. Tuesday.

Everyone had been evacuated from the burning building, which houses Peking Chinese Restaurant and apartments, and from the neighboring buildings, dispatcher James Durell said.

centertech.com

A Federal Communications Commission fund is paying $21 million annually to Windstream Communications Inc. to make broadband Internet service available to more than 62,000 rural homes and businesses in Kentucky.

alphanr.com / Alpha Natural Resources Inc.

Coal producer Alpha Natural Resources Inc. has told 292 workers in Kentucky and Virginia they are losing their jobs.

idigbluegrass.com

    

Bluegrass music is an integral part of Kentucky's culture.  It routinely sounds out in formal and informal settings. That includes the weekly get-togethers at Carl and Norma's Lil' Opry House in Maytown.  The down-home venue in Morgan County has become a breeding ground for young musicians.

Every Tuesday night, local bluegrass musicians gather at the Maytown Opry for their weekly jam session. The small white building, formerly a grocery store, is lined with church pews, with an American flag hanging behind the stage. 

Second SOAR Summit Focuses on 'Working the Plan'

May 11, 2015
wkyt.tv

Federal, state, and local officials joined hundreds of interested residents in Pikeville Monday for the second 'Shaping Our Appalachian Region' Summit. The meeting gave participants an opportunity to strategize on action steps to help move forward the eastern Kentucky economy. 

www.ekcep.org

The U.S. Department of Labor has approved a $7.5 million grant to help out-of-work coal miners in eastern Kentucky.

Mountain Parkway Extension Options Examined

Apr 15, 2015
salyersvilleindependent.com

There seems to be significant interest in the state's plans to extend Kentucky's Mountain Parkway.  Hundreds of people attended a meeting this week to get a glimpse of two proposals.  

The state is planning to extend the Mountain Parkway from Salyersville to Prestonsburg.  Two options were on display for more than 300 people attending the public meeting in Prestonsburg.  One proposal calls for widening the existing corridor while the second option involves building a new road just north of Kentucky 114. 

Beshear, Feds Announce $38 Million In Grants For Coal Communities

Mar 28, 2015
lanereport.com

The federal government will award as much as $38 million in grants this year to assist Eastern Kentucky communities negatively affected by the decline of the coal industry.

Funding will come from the Department of Labor’s Dislocated Worker National Emergency grants, the Small Business Administration and the Appalachian Regional Commission, which is co-chaired by Gov. Steve Beshear.

Stu Johnson / WEKU News

    

The University of Kentucky has been selected to head the first federal Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center.  The program aims to reduce child food insecurity in states with high poverty.

SOAR Legislation Continues to Move in Frankfort

Mar 10, 2015
kentucky.com

A Senate bill that would establish a state framework for the 'Shaping Our Appalachian Region' initiative passed out of a House committee Tuesday.  First term Jackson Representative Cluster Howard is hopeful that economic gains made through the state-federal effort can help reduce drug problems in eastern Kentucky.  "You end up with people feeling bad and they end up trying drugs to actually feel better, self-medicate, is what I say and I think with economic development and people having a future will eliminate some of that," said Howard.

morefood.org

The Kentucky National Guard is helping distribute water in communities where many households are without due to bitter cold temperatures.

facebook.com

A group of central Kentucky land owners and interested citizens are joining together to fight oil and natural gas fracking in their area.  The first public meeting of 'Frack Free Foothills' is scheduled for Tuesday night in Berea. 

Second SOAR Summit Planned for February

Jan 22, 2015
halrogers.house.gov

Plans are underway for the second 'Shaping Our Appalachian Region' Summit.  The February meeting is expected to focus on implementing economic and social strategies for eastern Kentucky.

Over 100 Kentucky Elk Heading to Wisconsin

Jan 12, 2015
lanereport.com

    

Kentucky and Wisconsin are entering into an agreement to help establish a more sound elk population up north, while supporting habitat management in the Bluegrass.  The program will take place over the next three to five years.  

The partnership means sending 150 elk cows to Wisconsin.  State officials say in 1997, with the help of six other states, Kentucky re-established its elk population. Today there are some 10,000 elk, many in eastern Kentucky.   

SOAR Initiative Approaching its 2nd Year

Dec 29, 2014
governor.ky.gov

The 'Shaping Our Appalachian Region' initiative is moving into its second year. Expectations about economic growth are tempered with the realization that new jobs aren't created overnight.

suretybonds.com

The director of Kentucky's Reclamation Guaranty Fund expects the first appropriation in early 2015.  The fund was established in 2013 to help carry out surface mine site reclamation when a company abandons property.  The fund is supported through fees paid by the mining industry.  Director Keith Smith says the trust currently stands at about $32 million.  "There are at least a couple of sites on that list that the Division of Abandoned Lands won't have enough money with the underlying bond to achieve reclamation and the fund will have to kick in some additional funds," said Smith.

jobsight.org

Representatives from several federal agencies gathered in Kentucky this week to discuss future plans for the designated 'Promise Zone.'  Eight southeast Kentucky counties make up the area.  The initiative, which aims to improve the region's overall quality of life, was unveiled by President Obama during his 2013 State of the Union speech. 

One and a Half Million Dollars to Go for Hazard Water Project

Oct 16, 2014
cityofhazard.com

Residents of an eastern Kentucky town can look forward to a new sewer system.  During a stop in Hazard Thursday, Governor Steve Beshear brought word of state funding for the project.

You might not think construction of a new sewer system would be a headline grabber.  But, to many people in the Hazard community, it will mean increased security for a critical utility. 

During the winter of 2009-20-10, the Hazard water treatment and distribution system experienced severe failures.  Some areas saw water outages for up to 45 days. 

facebook.com

    

Eastern Kentucky's Mountain Parkway expansion is years from completion but Governor Steve Beshear and other state and local officials gathered Thursday in Salyersville to mark the first phase of the project. Mayor Pete Shepherd says the four lane highway will pass through the heart of his eastern Kentucky community.  

Wet Summer is Perfect Set Up for Bright Fall Colors

Sep 27, 2014
kentuckytourism.com

Over the next few weeks, Kentuckians and visitors to the Commonwealth will likely begin to see trees changing to fall colors.  

A popular viewing site for colorful fall trees is Natural Bridge State Park. 

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