A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

UK agricultural economist says fall calf market depends on corn, wheat and a few unknowns

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky Cattle prices have been on a roller coaster ride in 2020 thanks in part to COVID-19. While there are still a few unknowns, University of Kentucky agricultural economist Kenny Burdine sees potential for a stronger fall calf market than we saw in fall 2019. In the spring, the pandemic created a bottleneck in the processing industry that Burdine said led to a decrease...

LexArts, Creative Lexington to present youth concert series; brainchild of 16-year-old Eliza Mullins

LexArts announced Monday an alliance with Creative Lexington that will bring together Lexington’s creative youth culture in the inaugural Creative Lexington Youth Concert Series on Oct. 3. The concert series is the brainchild of 16-year-old Eliza Mullins, an actress, singer and creator hoping to fill the void in her creative life created by COVID-19. After arranging and performing “Take...

Commentary: An open letter to Sen. Mitch McConnell from Kentucky Voices for Health

Kentuckians and people who are struggling all across the country are counting on you for leadership. In the face of a global health crisis that has infected nearly 55,000 Kentuckians – and killed more than 1,000 of our friends, family members, and neighbors – your constituents need real relief. This pandemic is nowhere near over and the last round of federal relief passed in May isn’t enough...

Finance and Administration Cabinet online surplus property auction runs through Sept. 29

The Finance and Administration Cabinet’s Division of Surplus Properties will host an online auction of heavy equipment no longer in use by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s (KYTC) Division of Equipment. The auction is underway and runs through Tuesday, Sept. 29. An annual event, this year’s auction will be conducted online due to COVID-19. Proceeds from the sale will go to support KYTC and...

A Kentucky example shows how CDC’s slow, cautious approach to pandemic contributed to spread

A bombshell USA Today package details how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention failed to effectively respond to the growing pandemic, adding to its spread across the United States — especially in small towns and rural areas. “Reporters reviewed 42,000 pages of emails and memos obtained from health departments and interviewed more than 100 community leaders and public health experts,...

Commentary: Federal aid hasn’t reached most Kentucky farmers, exposes fragilities of food system

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program has missed 70 percent of Kentucky’s farmers and has been largely inaccessible for direct market, small-scale, and specialty crop producers and farmers of color. The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the fragilities of our food system. The pandemic has stretched or broken the value chains that bring food from the farm to our plates....

Beshear reports 776 new COVID-19 cases and 8 deaths; says continue to wear masks to stay safe

Gov. Andy Beshear on Wednesday reported 776 new COVID cases and eight deaths, bringing the state’s total cases to 58,764 cases and 1,082 deaths. Ninety-one of the cases were children 18 and under, of which 12 were ages 5 and under. Fayette County reported 28 cases. “In general, what we are seeing is we still have higher case numbers than we would like to see, but we don’t at the moment see...

Freshman enrollment at Kentucky universities remains steady; students want campus experience

Preliminary estimates from the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education show that freshman enrollment at public universities has remained largely steady this semester despite COVID-19 and the struggling economy. The initial estimates, released on Tuesday, indicate that 18,373 freshmen enrolled at public, four-year institutions in fall 2020, down only 44 students – or 0.2 percent – from the previous...

White House coronavirus response coordinator commends UK’s restart plan during visit to campus

By By Kristi Willett and Brad Nally Special to KyForward The coordinator for the nation’s coronavirus response commended the University of Kentucky’s campus restart plans and what the university is doing to keep students and the community safe while visiting campus this week. “What we have seen in the states that we have visited in the last few days is that universities that spent the summer...

Latest results reveal 14 UK athletes test positive for COVID-19; seven staff members also test positive

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The latest COVID-19 results have revealed that 14 of the University of Kentucky’s 402 athletes tested positive during a round of testing conducted Aug. 20-Sept. 2. In addition to the 14 who tested positive for the virus, seven of 306 staff members also tested positive. A total of 34 athletes who returned to campus received antibody testing and one was a positive result...

Jason Glass: As we start new school year under unusual circumstances, department stands united

I wanted to start my first column as Kentucky’s new commissioner of education to let you know how happy I am to be back home and how honored I am to have been selected to help move the Commonwealth’s schools forward during these unprecedented times. I know this is the most unusual opening Kentucky – and the rest of the country – probably has ever had. The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE)...

Additional federal unemployment assistance begins for Kentuckians through Lost Wages Program

On Aug. 21, Gov. Andy Beshear announced that the state’s application for FEMA’s Lost Wages Program, federal money to aid unemployed Kentuckians, had been approved. The programmers have completed the final modifications to the unemployment insurance systems so the payment process for the Lost Wages Program (LWP) has begun. Self-certification has already been provided by most claimants and claimants...

Kentucky lobbyist says feds send nursing homes quick-test kits, but with rules that deter their use

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Testing is one of the few tools nursing homes have to keep the novel coronavirus out of their facilities, and the Trump administration has tried to help by sending them equipment to conduct tests that give quick results. But while they were sent with good intention and are appreciated, the head of the state nursing-home association told Kentucky Health News that...

Beshear welcomes latest donation of PPE to aid Kentucky’s response to ongoing COVID-19 battle

Gov. Andy Beshear on Monday welcomed one of the state’s latest corporate donations of personal protective equipment, which will help bolster the commonwealth’s response to the novel coronavirus 2019. “Even before this global health crisis arrived in Kentucky more than six months ago, we were working to secure the personal protective equipment needed to keep our people safe,” Beshear said. “The...

Stack goes another round with legislators, pushes back on data questions, answers queries on schools

By Al Cross Kentucky Health News Republican legislators kept up their questioning of the state’s coronavirus data last week, and the state health commissioner and Democratic lawmakers pushed back. Sen. Danny Carroll of Paducah, co-chair of the Program Review and Investigations Committee, was the leading questioner and most outspoken legislator, just as he was at the panel’s Aug. 13 meeting,...

Filly by Tapit brings $1.25 million to top Sunday’s opening session Day of Keeneland September Sale

Claiborne Farm, agent, paid $1.25 million for a filly by leading sire Tapit out of Grade 1 winner Embellish the Lace to top Sunday’s first session of the Keeneland September Yearling Sale on a day marked by brisk trade and the sale of five horses for $1 million or more. On Sunday, the first of two sessions of the Book 1 catalog, Keeneland sold 109 yearlings for a total of $40,680,000, for an average...

UK thin at certain positions, but depth chart ‘manageable’ following final scrimmage of camp

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops had to change his plans during his team’s third and final scrimmage of fall workouts Saturday. “We’re thin at certain positions and we did have to look at that and alter some of the scrimmage today,” he said. “We’re getting thin at a few spots and positions with injuries and COVID-19. Everything is still manageable at this point...

Billy Reed: When my high school granddaughter is playing field hockey, I won’t promise not to worry

This fall my younger granddaughter is playing field hockey at Assumption High School in Louisville. She loves the sport so much that she transferred to Assumption so she could play on one of the state’s best teams. So far, so good. Her parents, my older daughter and her husband, assure me she is happy and doing well in her new environment. That’s good enough for me because I so much admire them...

Virus death rate five times higher in prison than state as a whole; higher when adjusted for age, sex, race

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News Kentucky prisons have the third highest covid-19 death rate compared to death rates for the disease among the state’s whole population, even after rates are adjusted for the sex, age, race and ethnicity of inmates, says a study from the National Commission on Covid-19 and Criminal Justice. As of mid-August, the report found Kentucky’s prisons’...

White House report shows big increase in ‘red zone’ counties, death rate in Ky.; state ranks 19th in nation

By Mary Meehan Kentucky Health News More than half of Kentucky’s counties are in COVID-19 danger zones defined by the White House Coronavirus Task Force, and there were big increases last week in the state’s COVID-19 death rate and the number of counties in the task force’s “red zone.” The task force’s weekly report showed that the high-risk areas span both urban and rural communities....