A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Bevin announces $2.9 million in Community Development Block Grants for housing projects

Gov. Matt Bevin joined federal, state and local officials in Georgetown last week to announce $2,911,999 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding for housing rehabilitation projects across the Commonwealth. These federal funds, allocated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and administered by the Kentucky Department for Local Government (DLG), will benefit 45 families...

Kentucky unemployment rate rises to 4.3 percent in seasonally adjusted preliminary July 2019 data

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary July 2019 unemployment rate was 4.3 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The unemployment rate for July 2019 was up from the 4.1 percent reported for June 2019. The preliminary July 2019 jobless rate was down 0.1 percentage points from the 4.4 percent...

PSC allows transfer of eight sewer systems; most have financial, operational, environmental challenges

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved the sale of eight small sewer systems to a Missouri-based company that has promised to correct long-standing problems with most of the systems. In an order issued Wednesday, the PSC found that Bluegrass Water Utility Operating Co., LLC, a subsidiary of Central States Water Resources, has the necessary financial, technical and managerial ability...

Lisa Beran appointed interim executive director of Kentucky Housing Corporation as of Aug. 19

Kentucky Housing Corporation (KHC), the state housing finance agency, has appointed Lisa Beran as its interim executive director and chief executive officer after Edwin King announced his resignation to enter the private sector. Beran formerly served as deputy executive director and general counsel of KHC and had retired in March 2019, but returns as interim executive director on Aug. 19 for a smooth...

New state office building in downtown Frankfort officially named The Mayo-Underwood Building

Finance and Administration Cabinet Secretary William M. Landrum III officially announced the name of the new state office building — The Mayo-Underwood Building — in Frankfort on Tuesday. The name references the Mayo-Underwood School, the African-American school that stood for more than 40 years at the corner of Mero Street and Wilkinson Blvd, where the new building is now situated. In his remarks,...

Ky. Association of Career Colleges and Schools names Rep. Adam Koenig Legislator of the Year

Kentucky State Rep. Adam Koenig, R-Erlanger, has been named the Kentucky Association of Career Colleges and Schools (KACCS) 2019 Legislator of the Year. Rep. Koenig serves as chairman of the Kentucky House of Representatives Licensing, Occupations and Administrative Regulations Committee, which manages legislation governing the licensing and certification of professional occupations. The Legislator...

Kentucky’s General Fund receipts for July totaled $845.7 million, a 1.9 percent increase from a year ago

State Budget Director John Chilton announced Monday that Kentucky’s General Fund receipts for July, the first month of Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20), totaled $845.7 million, a 1.9 percent increase compared to July 2018 receipts. Increases in the sales and use tax and cigarette taxes out-paced declines in the income, natural resources and property taxes as the impacts of tax law changes continue to influence...

KentuckyWired finalizes $100 million bond sale to fund settlement, project costs for fiber optic network

The Kentucky Communication Network Authority (KCNA), the agency responsible for overseeing the Commonwealth’s KentuckyWired fiber optic cable network project, finalized a bond sale of $102,090,000 last week. The City of Williamsburg issued the bonds for the KentuckyWired Infrastructure Company. The Series 2019 municipal bonds were purchased by Morgan Stanley. The majority of the proceeds — $93...

Police remind residents to always lock vehicles; rate of firearms stolen from vehicles is increasing

The Lexington Police Department has a message for residents, especially gun owners: Never leave valuables in your car or truck, and always make sure that vehicle is locked. So far this year, 132 guns have been reported stolen from vehicles in Lexington. In the vast majority of those cases, the vehicle was left unlocked. Lawrence Weathers “We are on pace to have the highest number of guns stolen from...

State social services staff gets enhanced training to help families with substance use disorder

Kentucky’s Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) staff began specialized training on Thursday in best practices to address substance use disorder in the families they serve. The training is part of the Kentucky Opioid Response Effort (KORE), the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ overall effort to combat the opioid crisis. DCBS trainees will learn about stigmas surrounding substance...

Governor Matt Bevin’s general counsel announces restructuring of office, hiring of fourth attorney

Stephen Pitt, General Counsel to Governor Matt Bevin, announces a restructuring of the Office of General Counsel, effective immediately, as the result of the hiring of a fourth attorney in the Office, Brett Nolan. Mr. Nolan, a native of Lexington, Kentucky, is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and the University of Chicago Law School. He clerked for U.S. District Judge Karen Caldwell prior to...

Finance Cabinet to sell several parcels of land in downtown Frankfort for development purposes

The Finance and Administration Cabinet on Tuesday posted online a Request for Bid (RFB) for several parcels of land in downtown Frankfort that the Commonwealth of Kentucky no longer needs and intends to sell. The land includes Parcel Blocks B and C of the Capital Plaza Development area, along with the acreage beneath the Capital Plaza Hotel and the Frankfort YMCA. The two parcels of land to be sold...

Gov. Bevin and First Lady host ‘One Mind: Uniting the States for Our Children’ conference in Louisville

Gov. Matt Bevin and First Lady Glenna Bevin on this week convened top government, business and community leaders from across the United States for a groundbreaking dialogue about human trafficking and other key issues impacting children in America’s foster care system. Participants in Monday’s historic conference — “One Mind: Uniting the States for Our Children” — heard...

Bevin announces allocation of more than $15 million in excess coal severance revenue to 49 counties, 122 municipalities

Gov. Matt Bevin announced Monday that more than $15 million in excess coal severance tax revenue will be allocated to 49 counties and 122 municipalities that qualify to receive funds from the Local Government Economic Assistance Fund (LGEAF) coal severance program. Enacted by the 2018 General Assembly, HB 200 (as amended by HB 265) directs that if actual coal severance tax revenue collected for the...

DOI’s Fraud Division receives accreditation; Department demonstrates professional excellence

The Kentucky Department of Insurance’s (DOI) Division of Insurance Fraud Investigation continues its vital work of protecting the public by earning accreditation from the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police (KACP). The Fraud Division has spent the past year preparing for this accreditation, which required amending policies and procedures, updating training and equipment, ensuring officer safety...

Report shows Ky. lawmakers fall short on cancer-fighting policies; state tops nation in cancer deaths

Kentucky is falling short when it comes to implementing policies and passing legislation to prevent, reduce suffering and death from cancer, according to the latest edition of “How Do You Measure Up?: A Progress Report on State Legislative Activity to Reduce Cancer Incidence and Mortality.” “This report shows that we must do more to reduce suffering and death from cancer. But we have the power...

Financial Empowerment Commission establishes goals; focus on ‘financial livelihood of Kentuckians’

The Kentucky Financial Empowerment Commission, led by Treasurer Allison Ball, established goals for its first year at its inaugural meeting this week. “The Financial Empowerment Commission is off to a great start,” Ball said. “We had a very productive first meeting and are already hard at work to improve the financial empowerment of Kentuckians. I look forward to seeing the impact this Commission...

Kentucky Division of Waste Management accepting application for illegal dump and litter abatement

The Energy and Environment Cabinet’s (EEC) Division of Waste Management (DWM) is calling for grant applications for two of its signature programs, illegal dump cleanup and the cleanup of litter along public roads. The Illegal Open Dump Grant has funded the cleanup of 2,171 dumpsites since 2006, and the Litter Abatement Grant. Since 2003, state and local governments have cleaned more than 2.8 million...

PSC to take comments on law that changes way customers receive credit for renewable sources

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) has opened a case to take comments on the implementation of a recent law that will change the way in which Kentucky electric utility customers receive credit for electricity they generate from solar panels and other renewable sources. In an order issued Tuesday, the PSC said it wants to gather information that would be useful in future rate cases that will...

CSG selects 2019 Toll Fellowship Class; Tommy Druen chosen as Kentucky’s representative

Forty-eight state leaders from across the country have been selected to participate in The Council of State Governments’ 2019 Henry Toll Fellowship, the nation’s premier leadership development program for state government officials. The members of the Class of 2019 hail from 33 states and represent all three branches of state government. A committee of program alumni reviewed applications and selected...