A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky Justice Secretary to address 2019 RX Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit in Atlanta

Kentucky Justice Secretary John Tilley will join today with leaders and experts from across the country – including President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump – to discuss solutions to the nationwide opioid crisis at the 2019 RX Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit in Atlanta. Kentucky Justice Secretary John Tilley Secretary Tilley will speak on innovative reforms and initiatives that are underway...

Annual unemployment rates decreased in 117 Ky counties during 2018, according to KYSTATS

Annual unemployment rates decreased in 117 Kentucky counties in 2018 compared to 2017, rose in Monroe and Owen counties and stayed the same in Metcalfe, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS). The annual jobless rate for Woodford County was the lowest in the Commonwealth in 2018 at 3.1 percent. It was followed by Campbell, Fayette, Oldham and Scott counties, 3.3 percent each; Boone...

Public Pension discussion continues; actuarial consultant says systems needs another $214 million

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today The Public Pension Oversight Board heard from the Kentucky Retirement Systems and their actuarial consultant on recommendations for changes in the factors used to determine how much state funding will be needed for the state’s public pension systems over the next two years. 
Danny White with GRS Retiring Consultants, said Monday retirees are living longer, so the mortality...

Kentucky has high rate of improper payments in the Unemployment Insurance program

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Kentucky has one of the highest rates of improper payments in the Unemployment Insurance program, but state officials say they have taken steps to bring it under control. 
The Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act of 2010, enacted by Congress, requires programs to report an annual improper payment rate below 10 percent, and the Unemployment Insurance program,...

Monday — April 22 — is last chance to register to vote in the May 21 primary election

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes reminds eligible Kentuckians to register to vote by the deadline, April 22, ahead of the Commonwealth’s Primary Election on May 21.   “We’ve made it easy to register to vote in Kentucky with GoVoteKY.com, and we’ve had over 1 million people visit the online portal,” said Grimes, Kentucky’s Chief Election Official. “I...

Deadline is Monday to submit entries for Willis Memorial Foundation Historic Preservation Awards

The deadline is Monday, April 22, to nominate deserving individuals, projects, or organizations for a 2019 Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Historic Preservation Award. Ida Lee Willis Kentucky’s most distinguished celebration of excellence in preserving and rehabilitating historic buildings and cultural resources will take place in May, National Historic Preservation Month, at Berry Mansion in...

John Tilley announces grant applications for federal Victims Of Crime Act to be available on May 3

Kentucky Justice Secretary John Tilley has announced that applications will be available May 3 for obtaining grants under the federal Victims of Crime Act (VOCA). Programs that offer direct services to victims of violent crime may apply for the funds. Applications are due by June 15, and awards are scheduled to be announced in October. The VOCA program provides a range of services to crime victims,...

Transportation Cabinet in final stages of testing new driver’s license system; to pilot in Woodford, Franklin

The Kentucky Transportation (KYTC) is in the end stages of testing the state’s new driver’s license system to introduce new, more secure card versions that meet federal standards in the coming months. A pilot of the new system will begin this spring in Circuit Court Clerk Office locations in Woodford and Franklin counties. New licenses will be made available gradually in counties and become available...

Public Service Commission sets meeting on KY American Water pending rate increase on May 6

The Kentucky Public Service Commission will conduct a meeting in Lexington to provide information on and receive public comments about the pending rate increase requested by the Kentucky American Water Co. “This meeting will allow the public to learn about the PSC’s ratemaking process and Kentucky American Water’s application and to present their views directly to members of the Commission as...

Deadline is April 22 to register to vote in the May primary; register online at GoVoteKy

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is reminding eligible Kentuckians that the deadline to register to vote in the upcoming May 21 Primary Election is Monday, April 22. “Our elections should be determined by a majority of voters, not a minority,” said Grimes. “Registering to vote is the first step to having your voice heard on Election Day. I call on all eligible Kentuckians...

Governor signs into law ban on use of tobacco in all Kentucky public schools and events, effective July 1

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Gov. Matt Bevin has signed into law to ban the use of tobacco products in all Kentucky public schools and events, a policy that has taken several years to pass. It will take effect July 1, 2020. Kim Moser “It’s not only going to help kids become less addicted in the future and improve overall health, but I think it will actually improve the light...

Kentucky Supreme Court hears arguments over Bevin’s reorganization of education boards

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today The Kentucky Supreme Court heard oral arguments Friday on a lawsuit filed by Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear against Republican Gov. Matt Bevin’s reorganization of several education boards. 
There were seven state boards affected by reorganizations that were the targets of the suit:  the Kentucky Board of Education, Education Professional Standards Board,...

Kentucky becomes first state to use rapid DNA testing new technology to cut wait on sexual assaults

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Kentucky has become the first state in the nation to use rapid DNA testing for sexual assault investigations, which will cut the processing time down to a few hours, rather than days or weeks. 
Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rick Sanders called this a tool that will help “The Hidden Heroes,” those who work at the six KSP crime labs around Kentucky. 
“In less...

Gov. Bevin, Sen. Stivers at odds over governor’s veto of public pension bill passed on last day

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Two of Kentucky’s top Republican leaders, Gov. Matt Bevin and Senate President Robert Stivers, are at loggerheads over the governor’s decision to veto pension reform legislation passed on the final day of the 2019 General Assembly. 
“The rationale behind this decision is perplexing,” Stivers said.  “Just weeks ago, during the 2019 regular session, the governor...

ProPublica: Kentucky’s Secretary of State turns up the heat in fight with the elections board

By Jessica Huseman Propublica and Daniel Desrochers Lexington Herald-Leader Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes escalated her fight with the State Board of Elections this week when she removed its executive director from a national committee devoted to improving the country’s voting systems and better protecting them from cyberattacks. Grimes took the action against the executive...

Governor vetoes public pension bill, plans to call for special session to address the issue

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Gov. Matt Bevin on Tuesday vetoed a public pension bill approved on the final day of the 2019 General Assembly and vowed to call a special session to address the issue. During the 11 p.m. hour on the last day of the session, lawmakers passed public pension legislation that would have affected the regional public universities, as well as quasi-governmental agencies, such...

Kentucky Court of Justice to launch RESTORE initiative to help courts address opioid epidemic

The Kentucky Court of Justice will kick off a new initiative to help judges, circuit court clerks and court personnel further address Kentucky’s opioid epidemic. The Responsive Education to Support Treatment in Opioid Recovery Efforts (RESTORE) initiative will launch with a news conference on April 11 at 1:30 p.m. EDT. The public and media are invited to attend this event, which will take place in...

Ten teams from across Kentucky advance to finals of Lieutenant Governor’s Entrepreneurship Challenge

Lt. Gov. Jenean Hampton hosted three regional competitions of the 3rd Annual Lieutenant Governor’s Entrepreneurship Challenge (LGEC) on March 26-28. A business pitch competition open to all Kentucky high school students, the LGEC has seen over 1600 participants in its three-year history. Teams compete for scholarships that can be used any Kentucky post-secondary institution including colleges and...

Public invited to give input on state foster care system at upcoming regional forums

The public is invited to regional community forums April 8 in Owensboro and April 9 in Madisonville to discuss improving outcomes for Kentucky children and families involved in the state foster care system. Citizen Foster Care Review Boards in the region are hosting the forums. The Owensboro forum will take place from 3:15-4:45 p.m. CT in Tapscott Chapel at Kentucky Wesleyan College at 3000 Frederica...

CASA of Lexington to plant pinwheels to raise awareness of child abuse and neglect prevention

April is national child abuse prevention month. This Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Lexington gather at the Raising Cane’s located at 2555 Nicholasville Road in Lexington to bring awareness to the issue of child abuse. A proclamation will be presented in support of Child Abuse Prevention Month and CASA of Lexington will be joined by community leaders and representatives...