A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Department of Agriculture seeks applications for industrial hemp research pilot program

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles announced today that the Kentucky Department of Agriculture has opened the application period for Kentuckians wishing to participate in the state’s industrial hemp research pilot program for the 2019 growing season. “I am proud to report that our program participants grew more than 6,700 acres of hemp this year, the most ever under the industrial hemp research...

First 72 On You: Tips for animal owners to help prepare pets for emergencies and natural disasters

As part of the Kentucky Department for Public Health’s First 72 Are On You disaster awareness campaign, the department is spotlighting the importance of preparing household pets and animals for emergencies. “If you are like the many animal owners in Kentucky today, your pet is an important member of your household and the best way to protect your pet from the stress and disruption of an emergency...

Kentucky Auditor: Taxpayers on hook for almost $1.5 billion over 30 years for KentuckyWired

A special examination by Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon’s office of KentuckyWired, the statewide broadband project announced in 2014, finds that taxpayers will be on the hook for almost $1.5 billion over 30 years for the project. That is among nine findings detailed in Harmon’s nine-month examination of the Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) and KentuckyWired. Harmon’s report will...

Unemployment rates fall in 115 Kentucky counties in past year; Boone, Campbell, Woodford at 3.1 percent

Unemployment rates fell in 115 Kentucky counties between August 2017 and August 2018, rose in Owen, Monroe and Metcalfe counties, and stayed the same in Nelson and Lyon counties, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. Boone, Campbell and Woodford counties recorded the lowest jobless rates in Kentucky at 3.1 percent each....

Division of Forestry prepares for fall wildfire season; restrictions on outdoor burning in effect

The Kentucky Division of Forestry is preparing for fall wildfire season. Wildfires in Kentucky threaten damage to homes, private property, trees and landscapes. More importantly, they place lives at risk, including those of firefighters. The vast majority of Kentucky’s wildfires are preventable, the result of arson and careless open-burning (burning of trash, debris and brush). Despite a wet beginning...

Public Service Commission rejects South Kentucky RECC power purchase deal with Morgan Stanley

The Kentucky Public Service Commission has rejected a proposal by South Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative Corp. to enter into a long-term agreement to purchase power through Morgan Stanley Capital Group, Inc. In an order issued Thursday, the PSC found that the deal with Morgan Stanley violates South Kentucky’s obligation to purchase most of its electricity from the East Kentucky Power Cooperative...

Grimes renews call for statewide early voting as absentee voting begins in November 6 election

The Secretary of State’s office has announced that absentee voting is now underway for Kentucky’s Nov. 6 General Election. “Kentuckians who cannot get to the polls on Election Day have the option of voting absentee before the election,” said Alison Lundergan Grimes, Kentucky’s chief election official. “I am thankful for our county clerks who facilitate absentee voting...

Mayfield Mayor Teresa Rochetti-Cantrell elected president of Kentucky League of Cities

Mayfield Mayor Teresa Rochetti-Cantrell has been elected president of the Kentucky League of Cities by its membership, with Jeffersontown Mayor Bill Dieruf as first vice president and London Mayor Troy Rudder as second vice president. Left to right: Mayfield Mayor Teresa Rochetti-Cantrell, Jeffersontown Mayor Bill Dieruf and London Mayor Troy Rudder. (Photo courtesy of KLC) The officers were sworn...

Public Service Commission orders credit for Delta Natural Gas customers to reflect federal tax cut

The Kentucky Public Service Commission has reduced the annual revenue of Delta Natural Gas Co. to reflect a federal tax cut, thereby lowering the base rate portion of the average monthly bill for residential customers. In an order issued Friday, the PSC approved a customer credit to reflect reduced federal corporate income tax rates that took effect at the first of the year. The credit will take effect...

Volunteers needed in 24 Kentucky counties to review cases of children in foster care

Citizen Foster Care Review Boards in 24 Kentucky counties are seeking volunteers to make a difference in the lives of local children in foster care and other out-of-home care. The boards need volunteers to review cases of children placed in care because of dependency, neglect or abuse, to ensure they are placed in safe, permanent homes as quickly as possible. The counties in need of volunteers are...

Rep. James Comer, KACo President-elect Elbert Bennett talk impact of national legislation on Ky.

U.S. Rep. James Comer, R-KY, visited the Kentucky Association of Counties (KACo) this week, to discuss national legislation and how it could impact Kentucky’s counties. One of his constituents and KACo’s next president, Caldwell County Magistrate Elbert Bennett spoke with the congressman about the federal Farm Bill’s local impact, how hemp is creating opportunities in the state and...

Nearly $3 million in homeland security grants awarded throughout Kentucky to counter terrorism

After an extensive evaluation and review process, Gov. Matt Bevin and the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security (KOHS) announced Tuesday that 50 grant recipients will receive nearly $3 million under Kentucky’s 2018 Homeland Security Grant Program to purchase law enforcement, fire and emergency services equipment to counter threats of terrorism in the Commonwealth. “Ensuring the safety and protection...

Supreme Court to hear oral arguments in employee pension case at 10 a.m. Thurs.; here’s how to watch

There will be several ways for the public to view oral arguments when the Supreme Court of Kentucky hears the state employee pension case at 10 a.m. ET Thursday, Sept. 20. The case is Matthew G. Bevin, In His Official Capacity As Governor Of The Commonwealth Of Kentucky, Et Al. V. Commonwealth of Kentucky Ex Rel. Andy Beshear, Attorney General, Et Al.

 Supreme Court Justices Due to interest in...

First 72 on You: Third week of state’s National Preparedness Month efforts focuses seniors

The Department for Public Health (DPH) has launched First 72 On You information campaign during the month of September – National Preparedness Month (NPM), to increase emergency preparedness efforts for Kentuckians and their families. This week’s spotlight is on preparing older adults for disasters and emergencies. Older adults may be more vulnerable than younger adults during a disaster because...

First Lady Glenna Bevin holds foster care, adoption community engagement event in Owensboro

First Lady Glenna Bevin today visited Owensboro for a community engagement event aimed at empowering local faith-based, community and government groups to support Kentucky’s vulnerable children and families. The event is part of the First Lady’s new foster care and adoption initiative, “Uniting Daviess County: A Community of Care,” and featured officials from the Governor’s Office of...

League of Women Voters, LINKS, and library offering public forums for candidates; coming to YouTube

The League of Women Voters of Lexington, The Frankfort/Lexington Chapter of The LINKS, Incorporated, and the Lexington Public Library are co-sponsoring candidate forums for the 2018 general election. The first were held on Saturday as candidates for LFUCG Council At-Large and Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Districts 9, 11, and 12 will be today starting at 2:15 p.m. Next week on Saturday, September 22...

PSC lifts moratorium on some Duke Energy Kentucky efficiency efforts, eliminates others

After a thorough review of the costs, benefits and need for Duke Energy Kentucky’s demand-side management (DSM) programs, the Kentucky Public Service Commission has allowed the resumption of most of the programs, while modifying or eliminating others. In an order issued Thursday, the PSC found that some of the DSM programs are needed for Duke Kentucky to meet its obligations as a member of a regional...

Quarles elected second vice president of National Association of State Departments of Agriculture

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles was elected second vice president of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture on Wednesday on the last day of its annual meeting. Ryan Quarles “I am honored and humbled to be elected to this high office in a national agriculture organization,” Quarles said. “It’s always important for Kentucky to have a seat at the table when...

Contract review committee puts state agencies on notice about retroactive approval of contracts

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today The co-chairman of the General Assembly’s government contract review committee put state agencies on notice that he doesn’t like having to approve contracts with a retroactive starting date. 
Sen. Steven Meredith, R-Leitchfield, said on Tuesday he felt many of the reasons to approve contracts already entered in to by the agencies for such things as outside legal counsel...

Transportation Cabinet waves certain motor carrier regulations in anticipation of hurricane Florence

In anticipation of Hurricane Florence and its potential to cause damage to the southeastern United States, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Secretary Greg Thomas has waived certain regulations on commercial motor carriers involved in the relief effort. Secretary Thomas issued the emergency declaration that provides temporary regulatory relief for crews heading to the affected areas to deliver goods,...