A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Keeneland announces Spring Meet will open on April 2 without spectators; cancels April 7 sales event

After detailed consultations with Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear and the Kentucky Department for Public Health and with Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton and the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, Keeneland is taking the following steps out of an abundance of caution to do its part in containing the spread of COVID-19 while upholding its commitments to the local community, the Thoroughbred industry...

Gov. Beshear provides guidance as state responds to COVID-19, asks places of worship to cancel services

Governor Andy Beshear announced more decisive action and preparations on Wednesday to stop the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). “We know this is community spread and we need to get ahead of it,” Gov. Beshear said. “It is important for everybody out there to be calm, practice good hygiene and reduce the risk of exposure for themselves and others.” Actions and preparations...

Kentucky is one of 19 states that still allows corporal punishment in schools, but that could soon change

By Nadia Ramlagan Public News Service State lawmakers are considering a bill that would ban spanking in schools. Kentucky is one of 19 states that continue to allow corporal punishment. Glasgow family court judge Mica Wood Pence is responsible for placing children in foster care. She said when children have experienced physical violence in the home, hitting or spanking in school can do serious damage...

Berea College shutting down for semester due to coronavirus; residence halls to be vacated Saturday

By Mark Maynard Kentucky Today Berea College is shutting down school for the semester because of the challenges that the coronavirus brings, according to an email statement from President Lyle Roelofs, who said the school is stopping instructional activities at the end of the day Friday. Roelofs said the Administrative Committee made the decision in response to the COVID-19 challenges that will have...

Real ID licenses now available at Morehead regional licensing office; new ID requirements effective Oct. 1

Eastern Kentucky residents now have one more option to maintain U.S. air travel and military base entry thanks to the expansion of REAL ID-compliant card access at a new Morehead issuance location operated by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC). Beginning Monday, the Rowan County REAL ID Regional Driver’s Licensing office opened to all Kentuckians regardless of where they live. Any U.S....

Thoroughbred trainers Jason Servis, Jorge Navarro among 27 indicted on illegal doping charges

By Mark Hansel KyForward managing editor A total of 27 individuals, including thoroughbred trainers Jason Servis and Jorge Navarro, are charged in an alleged illegal doping scheme, in an indictment unsealed Monday. Trainer Jason Servis (center) at the 2019 Kentucky Derby awaiting a decision on the status of Maximum Security. The colt, trained by Servis, crossed the finish line first, but was disqualified...

Gov. Beshear announces three additional individuals in Kentucky test positive for Novel Coronavirus

Gov. Andy Beshear has announced three additional people in Kentucky have tested positive for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total to four in the state. The latest cases are in Jefferson and Fayette counties with a second person diagnosed in Harrison County. All four patients are in isolation.  Governor Beshear Gives a Corona Virus Update – 03.08.2020 Gov. Beshear confirmed...

Clinicians suspected Kentucky’s first case of coronavirus, but patient didn’t qualify for testing

Crystal Miller, head of the health department serving Harrison County, at a press conference Saturday. Others, L to R: Gov. Andy Beshear; Health Commissioner Steven Stack; Harrison County Judge-Executive Alex Barnett; Cynthiana Mayor James Smith; and Mark Newman, head of UK HealthCare. (Photo from KHN) By Melissa Patrick and Al Cross Kentucky Health News Kentucky found its first case of the new coronavirus,...

First case of 2019 novel coronavirus in Kentucky reported, Gov. Beshear declares state of emergency

KyForward staff The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department is reporting Kentucky’s first case of COVID-19 (2019 novel coronavirus). While the risk to the general public is low, health officials are working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Kentucky Department for Public Health (KDPH) to identify and contact all those who may have come in contact with the person. Gov....

Fayette’s Chief of Schools, Tony Watts, named superintendent of Newport Independent Schools

Staff report Fayette County Public Schools’ Chief of Schools, Tony Watts has been named superintendent of the Newport Independent Schools in Northern Kentucky. Watts will return to the district where he served as principal of Newport High School. Watts, 49, will replace Newport’s current superintendent Kelly Middleton, who is retiring at the end of the school year after eight years leading...

Gerry Dilger, 61, of Dromoland Farm, dies after cardiac arrest; funeral arrangements announced

Staff report Gerry Dilger, 61, a horseman’s horseman and founder of Dromoland Farm, died Wednesday at Baptist Health Hospital. He had been in ICU there since suffering cardiac arrest on Feb. 24. He is survived by his wife, Erin, and three children. A visitation will be held March 8 at Kerr Brothers, located at 3421 Harrodsburg Rd. in Lexington, from 4-8 p.m. ET. A funeral mass will take place...

Tornado pummels Nashville, TN., inflicting multiple deaths, severe damage; season is off to fast start

The outbreak of severe weather will continue to pummel portions of the U.S. this week. Rivers will rise, but most are expected to fall short of flood stage. While there is a statewide tornado warning drill Wednesday morning — it is just a drill and a reminder that tornado season has started and to be prepared in event of severe weather. Tornadoes, hail, lightning, wind and flooding are part of...

Jake Gibbs, a ‘warrior for his District,’ an avid environmentalist, dies unexpectedly at age 66

Staff Report Third District Councilmember Jake Gibbs, 66, died unexpectedly Tuesday. He is survived by his wife, Anita, and his two daughters. “Jake was a real warrior for his District,” said Mayor Linda Gorton in a statement. “He enjoyed and fiercely protected our historic neighborhoods and downtown. An avid walker and cyclist, he staunchly defended the environment, encouraging...

KentuckyWired fiber optic network increases internet speed 500 percent for State Police in Dry Ridge

State Police in Dry Ridge can respond to 911 calls more quickly and share information with other law enforcement agencies faster and more efficiently, thanks to a big increase in internet speed provided by the KentuckyWired high-speed fiber-optic network. Kentucky State Police Post #6 in Dry Ridge became the first State Police post to transition to the KentuckyWired network on Feb. 26, increasing their...

Kentucky’s forest fire hazard season is here; wildfires a concern during wet weather conditions

Despite one of the wettest winters on record, Kentucky’s forest fire hazard season has begun, and forestry personnel hope it will ‘spark’ a renewed sense of vigilance among Kentucky residents. “Even with the heavy precipitation this winter, dead grass, leaves and twigs can dry out quickly and act as fuel for fire,” said James Wright, director of the Division of Forestry. “It is very important...

Kentucky State Police undertake two-week statewide enforcement blitz targeting aggressive drivers

The Kentucky State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division announced on Friday the start of a two-week statewide enforcement blitz targeting aggressive driving behaviors and encouraging all drivers to share the road. 
“Many preventable crashes result from unsafe driving behavior such as speeding, distracted driving and following too close. Oftentimes, we see this on our highways when motorists...

Kentucky one of six states selected for national dual-credit workshop in Virginia in March

After a competitive application process, Kentucky was one of six states selected by the National Governors Association (NGA) and the College in High School Alliance (CHSA) to attend the College in High School Alliance’s dual and concurrent enrollment workshop March 25-26 in Arlington, Virginia. The workshop’s purpose is to expand equitable access to high-quality dual enrollment, concurrent...

Governor Andy Beshear says state prepared and ready to address coronavirus issue head-on

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today There have no confirmed cases in Kentucky of coronavirus, known as COVID-19, and Gov. Andy Beshear has addressed the state’s efforts to keep it that way. “I want to reassure everyone that your state government, your local health departments, everyone, is prepared and is ready to address this issue head-on, and I feel very strongly that our work will have us prepared,...

New Interact for Health poll indicates an uptick in misuse of prescription pain medication in Kentucky

By Nadia Ramlagan Public News Service More Kentuckians report knowing someone who is misusing prescription pain medication, according to a new poll. Colleen Desmond, a researcher at Interact for Health, the group that conducted the survey, said the findings indicate prescription drug misuse continues to be a persistent problem statewide, despite the fact that overdose deaths have dropped. The 2019...

Roberts wins Special Election to fill Keene’s House District 67 seat; White defeats Redwine in HD 99

By Mark Hansel KyForward managing editor Rachel Roberts will fill the House District 67 seat vacated by former Democratic State Rep. Dennis Keene. Keene was appointed Commissioner of the Department of Local Government by Gov. Steve Beshear. Beshear called for the Special Election that took place Tuesday. Roberts with former State Rep. Dennis Keene. Roberts, a Democrat, held the seat for the party,...