Kentucky

mitch mcconnell
Andrew Harnik / AP

Kentucky's congressmen and senators provided mixed reactions to the assassination of Iran's powerful military leader Qassem Soleimani during a U.S. military airstrike on Friday.

cat cafe
Courtesy of KyHumane.org

The Kentucky Humane Society found homes for more animals in 2019 than ever before, according to PR and Marketing Director Andrea Blair. Over 6,800 homeless dogs, cats and horses were adopted in the past 12 months — that’s about 700 more adoptions than in 2018.

Groups across Kentucky are preparing to participate in the nationwide count of the homeless that takes place at the end of January. In advance of the count, several training sessions are being offered during the week of Jan. 6 to 10.

The Kentucky Housing Corporation coordinates the state’s count of the homeless, called K-Count, that will be held this year on Wednesday, Jan. 29.

It’s part of the nationwide count of the homeless managed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Tori Henninger is executive director of Barren River Area Safe Space, or BRASS, which provides services for victims of domestic violence in a 10-county region in southern Kentucky. 
 

Henninger says many individuals, especially women, become homeless as a result of domestic violence, so BRASS is one of several organizations offering training to people who want to take part in the K-Count.


State lawmakers return to Frankfort on Jan. 7 for the next legislative session when lawmakers have to write a new state budget. 

Michael Monks / The River City News

Many years have passed since Manhattan Harbour was first announced as a potentially transformational project at Dayton's riverfront.

And after many of those years without any movement at all, 2019 proved to be the river city's biggest yet in terms of new housing projects at Manhattan Harbour.

A lawmaker from Hardin County is hoping Kentucky follows the example of Tennessee and other states that don’t impose an income tax on its residents.

Supporters say transitioning away from an income tax and increasing the state’s sales tax would make Kentucky more attractive to businesses.

Opponents say it would be a boon to the wealthy, while hurting low-income and vulnerable residents.

The effort to move Kentucky away from relying on income tax gained steam in 2018. That’s when Republican Governor Matt Bevin signed into law a massive overhaul of the state’s tax code.


A new law that goes into effect next week will require Kentucky drivers to donate $10 when buying and renewing some special license plates. That same law will also end production of the special plates for organizations that do not register enough users.

Kentucky defines a special license plate as one which identifies the driver as, “a member of a group or organization, or a supporter of the work, goals, or mission of a group or organization.” There are dozens of special license plates, and the majority of them (including military, university and nature plates) already include a mandatory donation.

 


The U.S. Census Bureau is recruiting workers for thousands of temporary positions across Kentucky and the nation to assist with the 2020 count. 

Most of the positions are for enumerators, those who go door-to-door to assist citizens with filling out their questionnaire.  Julie Trovillion, a partnership specialist with the Census who works out of Bowling Green, said 1,800 applicants are needed in Warren County alone.

"We ask people to put in at least 15 hours per week and up to 40 hours per week, but they get to pretty much set their own schedule," said Trovillion. "Whatever hours they’re available, whatever days, we’ll work around their schedule.”

The Census Bureau pays $15 an hour, plus 58 cents for every mile driven.  Those interested can apply online.

Economists are predicting that Kentucky will bring in slightly more tax revenue over the next two years, but the state is also facing increased financial obligations that will likely eclipse the increase.

On Tuesday, the Consensus Forecasting Group — a panel of economists hired by the state to make revenue predictions at the end of each year — said that tax revenue will increase just 1.3 percent in the upcoming fiscal year and 1.8 percent in the year after that.

The increase translates to $146 million in new revenues in the 2021 fiscal year that begins next July and $207 million in the year after that.

 


Provided / Kentucky Transportation Cabinet

In February, Kentucky created a registry for emergency contacts. Residents with a driver's licence, learner's permit, or legal ID card can add the name and contact information for one person in case of emergency.

Little-Known Facts About The Ethnic Roots Of The Tri-State

Dec 19, 2019
octoberfest
Ctomasetti / Wikimedia Commons

Our discussions of race and ethnic identity are often limited to big, broad groups: black, white, Latino, Asian, American Indian. Now, data compiled by the APM Research Lab allows us to get past those labels and get to know a bit more about our fellow Tri-Staters.

Daniel Cameron has been sworn in as Kentucky’s next attorney general. He is the first Republican to hold the office since 1948 and the first African American elected on his own ticket to statewide office.

matt bevin
Timothy D. Easley / AP

If you want to know what kind of person the former Kentucky governor really is, read on.

Be warned, though, you may feel dirty after doing so and want to take a shower immediately.

A Kentucky state senator says he plans to introduce a constitutional amendment to reform the governor's pardoning power.  The move comes after former Governor Matt Bevin issued hundreds of pardons, many for people convicted of heinous crimes.

Governor Matt Bevin issued more than 400 pardons and commutations before leaving office on Monday.  Among the beneficiaries was a man convicted of beheading a woman and stuffing her body in a barrel and a man convicted of child rape.  In another case, Bevin pardoned a convicted murderer whose family held a fundraiser for him. 


A little under a half a million Medicaid enrollees in Kentucky may be confused about what recent news about the state’s Medicaid contracts means for their health benefits. About 435,130 Kentuckians currently have Medicaid health insurance through Passport and Anthem, both of which recently lost out on contract renewals.

The companies are still offering coverage now, and people are able to sign up for a plan from either during open enrollment, which ends December 13. But as the situation stands, these two plans won’t offer Medicaid benefits starting July 1; Molina and United Healthcare will take their places. And all that could change depending on decisions by new Gov. Andy Beshear’s administration or the success of the companies’ appeals. 

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Covington hopes to help at least 70 homeowners or renters eliminate lead-based paint. The city has won $1.66 million in federal funds to rid old homes of the hazard that is making children sick, or has the potential to do so.

Report: Kentucky Incarceration Rates Worst In Region

Dec 13, 2019

A report published last week found that Kentucky’s incarceration rates are the worst in its region, topping Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Tennessee and North Carolina.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear fulfilled another of his “week one” campaign promises on Thursday by signing an executive order to automatically restore voting rights to people with nonviolent felonies who have completed their sentences. He estimated the move would allow more than 140,000 people to vote.

wayne lewis
Courtesy of Education.Ky.Gov

The Kentucky Board of Education has forced out Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis as part of an overhaul in the administration of newly inaugurated Gov. Andy Beshear.

A family court judge in Kentucky is facing numerous accusations of professional and sexual misconduct, as state authorities say Kenton County Judge Dawn Gentry coerced colleagues to support her election campaign, made inappropriate advances toward an attorney and had sex in a courthouse office.

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