A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Peoples Exchange Bank makes $50,000 donation to God’s Pantry Food Bank to help fight hunger

Peoples Exchange Bank has announced a $50,000 donation to God’s Pantry Food Bank. Bank Board of Directors authorized the donation in response to the increased need for food assistance brought on by COVID-19. The donation will provide financial support in the fight against hunger in Central and Eastern Kentucky as the Food Bank adapts to changes within volunteers groups and an increased demand for...

University of the Cumberlands listed as safest college campus in Kentucky for second straight year

University of the Cumberlands was listed as the safest college campus in Kentucky in a recent 2020 ranking by YourLocalSecurity.com. Cumberlands was lucky number 13 countrywide. This is the second consecutive year the Cumberlands has ranked first in the state for campus safety. “We do all we can to make sure our students are safe on campus,” said Emily Coleman, provost of the university. “At...

Kentucky restaurateurs, distillers, musicians urge McConnell to support RESTAURANTS Act

Prominent Kentucky restaurateurs, chefs, distillers, musicians and industry leaders called on Senator Mitch McConnell to include the RESTAURANTS Act in the upcoming stimulus bill designed to resuscitate the devastated economy. On the press call, Kentucky chefs Edward Lee and Ouita Michel, joined by Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery’s Preston Van Winkle and Louisville-based band My Morning Jacket’s...

Kentucky’s General Fund receipts increase 1.5 percent in FY20; Road Fund receipts fall 4.8 percent

State Budget Director John Hicks has reported that Kentucky’s General Fund receipts for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) ended better than expected: $104.6 million more than the budget enacted in April 2020 and $575 million more than the late May 2020 revised revenue estimate. Road Fund collections were $60.3 million less than the enacted budget and $101.5 million more than the May revised estimate. The fiscal...

Secretary of State Michael Adams offers overview of Kentucky’s 2020 primary and general elections

Secretary of State Michael Adams testified Tuesday before the Interim Joint Committee on State Government, offering an assessment of what worked well in Kentucky’s unique 2020 primary election, and what might be sustainable for the general election. Adams’ remarks: I’d like to offer some perspective about our primary election, as well as our general election. First, our primary election was a...

Gas demand low, national average decreases for first time since April; Kentucky prices rise by 3 cents

As COVID-19 case numbers surpass 4 million, demand for gasoline is weakening across the nation. That’s made for lower prices in many areas of the country, but not here in the Bluegrass. The latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) demand reading measures at 8.5 million barrels per day, which is about 11 percent less than a year ago. The lower demand contributed to a cheaper national average...

KDE selects 19 students from public high schools to join Commissioner’s Student Advisory Council

The Kentucky Department of Education has announced that 19 students from Kentucky public high schools have been selected to join the Commissioner’s Student Advisory Council for the 2020-21 year. The council was established to provide feedback on critical issues impacting students and schools and works with KDE staff to develop ideas to improve and transform education. The group meets with the commissioner...

Food insecure in Kentucky? Not if UK Cooperative Extension has a say in battle against hunger

By Carol Lea Spence University of Kentucky As the COVID-19 pandemic swept through the state, sickening people, shuttering businesses, closing schools and temporarily crimping the food supply, a lot of people found themselves suddenly wondering how they would be able to feed their families. Without any warning, more Kentuckians than usual found themselves among the “food insecure.” To be food insecure...

Kentucky unemployment rate in June drops 6.6 percent from May; state jobless rate at 4.3 percent

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary June 2020 unemployment rate was 4.3 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The preliminary June 2020 jobless rate was down 6.6 percentage points from May 2020 and equaled the 4.3 percent recorded for the state one year ago. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless...

Secretary of State Michael Adams puts out APB for poll workers in Kentucky for November election

Secretary of State Michael Adams is putting out an all-points bulletin for poll workers for the November election. “Like most Kentuckians, I want things to get back to normal – and that includes our elections,” Adams said. “I want more robust in-person voting options than we had in June, but that is only possible if Kentuckians step up and volunteer to be poll workers.” Michael Adams A...

AAA: Gasoline prices remain mostly steady, despite demand at highest level in four nearly months

Gasoline demand increased on the week to the highest level (8.7 million barrels per day) since March as stocks decreased, but the combination still wasn’t enough to significantly impact gas price averages in Kentucky or across the country. On the week, the national gas price average only increased a couple of pennies to land at $2.20. That is 10 cents more than last month and nearly 60 cents less...

Kentucky offers in-person unemployment assistance in Covington, Prestonsburg beginning Monday

Individuals can make appointments for in-person unemployment insurance services that will be offered next week in Covington and Prestonsburg to assist Kentuckians while ensuring the safety of those needing assistance and limiting the spread of COVID-19. Individuals can schedule appointments for July 13 and July 14 in Covington during the hours of 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Covington in-person event will...

AAA urges motorists to take every precaution to avoid car breakdowns in summertime heat

When the mercury in the thermometer goes up, so does the call volume for AAA emergency roadside service, so AAA is urging motorists to take every precaution in an effort to avoid a true emergency. Because of the pandemic-related shut down, many vehicles have been sitting idle for a prolonged period of time, which can lead to car trouble in itself. Now, the heat of the summer is upon us, when all drivers...

Pandemic exposes problems in funding for Kentucky’s non-hospital public health system

From 2010 to 2018, Kentucky’s non-hospital public health expenses per resident dropped 32 percent, more than any state but South Carolina and Nevada, which dropped 55 and 33 percent, respectively. A comprehensive story by reporters for The Associated Press and Kaiser Health News says “The U.S. public health system has been starved for decades and lacks the resources to confront the worst health...

Commentary: It’s imperative for federal government to step up, provide the resources for rent relief

By Adrienne Bush, Marilyn Harris and Tiffany Marthaler Special to KyForward In March, this country’s economy was brought to a scratching halt by the COVID-19 pandemic. Millions of people are out of work, with little hope of returning to a new “normal” anytime soon. In June, three months into the COVID-19 state of emergency, many of us watched the lines of hundreds of people still waiting for...

Kentucky health experts advise Fourth of July food safety; protect your family from foodborne bacteria

The Fourth of July holiday offers opportunities for outdoor fun with family and friends. However, these warm weather events also present opportunities for foodborne bacteria to thrive. As food heats up in summer temperatures, bacteria multiply rapidly. To protect yourself, your family, and friends from foodborne illness during warm-weather months, safe food handling when eating outdoors is critical. Health...

Quarles challenges Beshear’s executive orders, claims violations of process in state constitution

Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles filed a lawsuit Monday in the Scott Circuit Court in Georgetown to declare several of Gov. Andy Beshear’s executive orders to be violations of the processes outlined by Kentucky’s Administrative Practices Act and the state constitution. Quarles filed the case alongside Evans Orchard and Cider Mill, LLC, which joined him as a co-plaintiff in the case. “The...

Kentuckians warned that massive dust cloud from Sahara Desert could make weekend air quality poor

Kentucky Department for Public Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack warned Kentuckians that air quality in the state may be poor this weekend and into next week. An enormous cloud of dry and dusty air that originated over the Sahara Desert will move across the southern United States over the next three to seven days. “We absolutely need to be cautious this weekend and next week, monitor the air quality...

Beshear administration keeping promise, working to build America’s AgriTech capital in Kentucky

Gov. Andy Beshear has announced that his administration is keeping its promise to build America’s AgriTech capital in Kentucky. Actions taken by Beshear on Wednesday include signing an international agreement with 16 other partner organizations, including the Dutch government, that are committed to the same goal. The Governor also established an AgriTech Advisory Council to guide the commonwealth’s...

Gas price increases slow nationally as demand dips; Kentucky prices at pumps only a penny higher

After weeks of watching prices tick upward with the reopening of the economy, the rate at which gas prices are increasing across the country is slowing. Thirty states only saw an increase of a penny or two over the past week, including Kentucky, causing the national average to push more expensive by just three cents to $2.13 since last Monday. In Kentucky, the average for regular unleaded inched up...