A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Beshear, Kentucky leaders urge lawmakers to pass sports betting legislation; KEA, Chamber support bill

With support from educators, top business leaders, law enforcement and retirees, Gov. Andy Beshear on Thursday called on lawmakers to pass sports betting legislation to stop Kentucky dollars from flowing to neighboring states and use those funds for needs in Kentucky. “We have a real urgency in Kentucky. We need new revenue to support the needs of our communities, our state and especially our children...

KDLA announces 25 recipients for grant funds of $575,000 to preserve local government records

The Department for Libraries and Archives (KDLA) within the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet has announced 25 recipients of more than $575,000 of the Local Records Grant Program funds to preserve and manage local government records. The Local Records Program helps to preserve, protect and make available records with continuing archival value and assist local agencies with records...

Grants available for road projects using rubber-modified asphalt; applications due April 1

The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet will provide up to $500,000 in grant funding for local road projects that utilize rubber-modified asphalt, rubber from finely ground waste tires. Grants are available to county or metro government entities. Applications must be received by April 1. Money for these projects comes from the Kentucky Waste Tire Trust Fund, which receives $2 from every new tire...

Tax filing season is officially here; Kentucky Dept. of Revenue now accepting 2019 tax returns

The Kentucky Department of Revenue (DOR) has finalized its tax filing processes and procedures, striving to make this the most efficient and safe filing season possible. The IRS began accepting electronic and paper federal tax returns on Jan. 27. Kentucky is following the same timeline and began accepting returns last week. Individual state income tax refunds will begin being processed on Feb. 10,...

Nearly $1 million in grants awarded to 21 Kentucky counties to clean up illegal open dumps

Gov. Andy Beshear and Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Goodman announced approximately $955,000 in grant funding has been awarded for the cleanup of 121 illegal dumps in 21 counties across the Commonwealth. “Illegal dump sites are a blight on this beautiful state of ours,” Beshear said. “Cleaning these will not only restore properties but will provide a healthier environment for...

Beshear joins National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils to gift fitness centers to Ky Schools

With a goal of ending childhood obesity, Gov. Andy Beshear and fitness icon Jake Steinfeld, Chairman of the National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils (NFGFC), announced Monday that Kentucky has been selected for the Councils’s 2020 DON’T QUIT! Campaign. “Our children and their health are a top priority for Britainy and me,” Gov. Andy Beshear said. “As parents of 9- and 10-year-olds,...

KYTC’s 2020 Recommended Highway Plan prioritizes safety, fast-tracks major regional access projects

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) presented the 2020 Recommended Highway Plan to lawmakers that prioritizes safety and fast-tracks major regional access projects to improve the quality of life for Kentucky families and boost economic development. The Plan features a historic biennium investment of $100 million to improve safety conditions on rural roads through the Highway Safety Improvement...

Kentucky Housing Corporation awards more than $12.4 million for affordable housing units

Kentucky Housing Corporation (KHC) awarded more than $12.4 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits (Housing Credits) and other program resources last week, providing communities throughout Kentucky more affordable housing options. KHC awards Housing Credits to developers annually through a competitive process. Housing Credits are tax incentives allocated by the Internal Revenue Service and are designed...

KYSTATS report: Unemployment rates rise in 56 Kentucky counties in past year, drop in 46 others

Unemployment rates rose in 56 Kentucky counties between December 2018 and December 2019, fell in 46 and stayed the same in 18 counties, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. Oldham County recorded the lowest jobless rate in the Commonwealth at 2.7 percent each. It was followed by Fayette, Shelby, and Woodford...

Dept. of Financial Institutions offers tips on protect personal data to avoid scams, fraud, identity theft

The Public Protection Cabinet’s Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) reminds Kentuckians about the importance of protecting personal data to avoid scams, fraud, and identity theft. Gov. Andy Beshear, who initiated Kentucky’s Scam Alert program as attorney general, continues to focus his administration’s efforts on the protection of Kentuckians from those who would commit fraud. “Data...

Thayer receives KACP Outstanding Legislative Services Award for support of law enforcement

Kentucky Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer has received the Kentucky Association Chiefs of Police (KACP) Outstanding Legislative Services Award for his support of law enforcement during the 2019 Kentucky General Assembly regular session. “Receiving this award is a tremendous honor,” Thayer said. “I am humbled by the recognition because of my total respect for the brave men...

KentuckyWired begins connecting government offices to Ring 1A in northern section of state

KentuckyWired, the state-run project constructing high-speed fiber optic infrastructure to every Kentucky county, has begun connecting government offices in the northern section of the state known as Ring 1A. The Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) office in Owenton was the first site to transition over to KentuckyWired on Dec. 5. Now, after extensive testing to ensure network connections...

Follow-up legislation to 2019’s School Safety Resiliency Act easily clears Kentucky Senate

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Follow-up legislation to last year’s school safety bill easily cleared the state Senate on Monday. Sen. Max Wise, R-Campbellsville, the sponsor of the bill, said over the past year he has listened to stakeholders and people across the state to come up with changes to the original School Safety Resiliency Act. “A good bill has become even better,” Wise told his colleagues,...

Senate president, long the key obstacle to medical marijuana in Kentucky, now sees ‘narrow path’ to it

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News The most important legislative opponent of legalizing medical marijuana in Kentucky said Friday that there is a “narrow path forward” for it. Senate President Robert Stivers said that the day after a medical-cannabis bill was filed in his chamber. Senate Bill 107 has bipartisan sponsorship from 11 of the Senate’s 38 members. It is a companion...

Kentucky unemployment rate drops 0.1 percent in December; jobless rate now at 4.3 percent in state

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary December 2019 unemployment rate was 4.3 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet (EWDC). The preliminary December 2019 jobless rate was down 0.1 percentage points from the 4.4 percent recorded for the state in November 2019. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate...

This week at the Capitol: Lawmakers address issues ranging from voter identification to school safety

As sure as gavel strikes mark the start of a Kentucky General Assembly session, packed hallways in the Capitol Annex are a sign that a session has gone into high gear as people from across Kentucky converge to make their voices heard. That was clearly the case this past week as thousands of Kentuckians came to the Capitol Campus to weigh in on issues ranging from voter identification to school safety....

Kentucky Senate passes bill requiring photo ID for voters along party lines; measure moves to House

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Legislation requiring a photo ID in order to vote passed the Kentucky Senate along party lines on Thursday with Republicans moving the measure to the House. Sen. Robby Mills, R-Henderson, said there are alternatives for those who don’t have a photo ID, such as a driver’s license. “They may produce another form of ID such as a social security card, a credit or debit...

Governor, transportation secretary focus on helping Kentuckians obtain REAL IDs by Oct. deadline

Gov. Andy Beshear and Transportation Secretary Jim Gray on Wednesday said they are focused on helping Kentuckians who need a REAL ID obtain one by the Oct. 1 deadline. The officials spoke at a joint appearance at the Kentucky Transportation headquarters. Despite Kentucky not currently meeting the federal REAL ID standards, the Beshear administration is committed to implementing the initiative. On...

Bill affecting state’s growing industrial hemp industry is first to pass Kentucky House Tuesday

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Legislation affecting Kentucky’s burgeoning hemp industry is the first to clear the Kentucky House during the 2020 General Assembly. 
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Matthew Koch, R-Paris, told his colleagues it has the endorsement of The Kentucky Hemp Association and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles. 
“This bill incorporates language and recent guidelines issued...

Kentucky Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control has received $300k in ResMed settlement

Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced that the Kentucky Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control has returned more than $300,000 to the state and federal Medicaid program as part of a joint settlement with other states and the federal government with ResMed Corp.. ResMed is a provider of health care goods and services, including manufacturing and selling positive airway pressure machines, masks,...