Kentucky

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After a shakeup of Kentucky’s Board of Education last week, conservative groups are pushing for the state to intervene in the management of Jefferson County Public Schools, the state’s largest school district.

millenium falcon
YouTube / Star Wars Channel

The famous and beloved "fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy" lands in Northern Kentucky this weekend, and yes, the Millennium Falcon, talking about we are. 

Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes says she hopes turnout in Kentucky’s May 22 primary election will be just as large as the ballot.  The deadline to register to vote is Monday, April 23.

The mid-term election will feature a host of county-wide races, all of the seats in the state House, half of the state Senate, Congressional, and judicial races. 

Grimes says she’s optimistic that the activism among teachers and other state workers during this year’s legislative session will translate into high turnout at the polls.

kentucky state capitol building
Peter Fitzgerald / Wikimedia

This year’s Kentucky General Assembly was book-ended by turmoil, but over the course of nearly four months the Republican-led legislature was still able to wrangle the votes to approve politically volatile policies like changing pension benefits for public workers and overhauling Kentucky’s tax code amid intense protests from public workers, especially teachers.

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin is apologizing for saying a teachers' strike left hundreds of thousands of children vulnerable to sexual assault and drug use.

On Friday, Bevin told reporters, "I guarantee you somewhere in Kentucky today, a child was sexually assaulted that was left at home because there was nobody there to watch them."

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Update, Monday, April 16: Bevin has now apologized for his remarks

As one of its final acts of this year’s legislative session, the Republican-led Kentucky House of Representatives passed a resolution formally condemning Gov. Matt Bevin for saying that teachers neglected students by attending protests in Frankfort on Friday, leading to child abuse.

Kentucky state capitol
Alix Mattingly / WFPL, Kentucky Public Radio

On the final day of this year’s Kentucky General Assembly, state lawmakers passed “clean-up” bills that would make changes to the two-year budget and revenue bills that passed into law on Friday.

kentucky teacher protest
Ryland Barton

Teachers from across Kentucky are expected to converge on the state Capitol again Friday as lawmakers return to Frankfort for the final two days of this year’s legislative session.

The Kentucky Education Association — the statewide teachers union — has called for lawmakers to override Gov. Matt Bevin’s vetoes of the two-year state budget and revenue bills, which set aside more funding for public education than Bevin’s proposed budget did.

J. Tyler Franklin / WFPL

Kentucky lawmakers will consider whether to override Gov. Matt Bevin’s vetoes of the state budget and revenue bills and whether to pass any other last-minute bills during the final two days of this year’s legislative session on Friday and Saturday.

Craft bourbon distillers have been growing for the past several years as drinkers rediscover heritage and new styles of brown liquor drinks. Some might call it a boom. But many distillers have seen the boom-and-bust cycle of liquor popularity before and are exploring ways to hedge their bets against another bust.

Andrew Buchanan walks through Hartfield & Co. Distillery, a small, relatively new operation located in a former seed storage warehouse in Paris, Ky.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

A day after Gov. Matt Bevin signed a bill overhauling retirement benefits for public workers, Attorney General Andy Beshear has filed a lawsuit to try and block it.

jeff hoover
Gage Skidmor / Wikimedia Commons

Former House Speaker Jeff Hoover has admitted that he violated state ethics rules by exchanging sexually charged text messages with a legislative staffer who used to work for him.

Ryland Barton / WFPL

Gov. Matt Bevin says it would be “irresponsible” for teachers in Kentucky to strike a week after thousands of educators descended on Frankfort to protest pension and education cuts.

Though state law doesn’t allow teachers to strike in Kentucky, the Jefferson County Teachers Association has called for educators to take a personal day on Friday to protest Bevin’s vetoes to the budget and tax reform bills passed by the legislature.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

No one in Kentucky is more than one person removed from the opioid epidemic, according to state health officials meeting Monday with U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams. The visit comes just days after Adams' call for more people to carry the overdose reversal drug naloxone.

kentucky medicaid
jannoon028freepikcom / Flickr Creative Commons

A top Kentucky official says northern Kentucky will likely be the first area where Medicaid enrollees will have to meet the state’s new 'community engagement' requirement, starting July 1.

Kristi Putnam, program manager for the Medicaid changes in Kentucky, said the state sent out post-cards this week.

cincinnati edition
Jim Nolan / WVXU

The Ohio governor's race heats up as we get closer to the May primary. Two Cincinnati City Council members will lead an investigation of City Manager Harry Black. Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin says he's not happy with the tax reform and budget bills passed by the General Assembly, as thousands of teachers protest a pension bill in Frankfort and throughout the state. And a local college student shares her story of sexual harassment.

FDA Weighs Pros and Cons of Vape Flavors

Apr 5, 2018
vaping pens
Vaping.com

In 2014, about one in four teens nationwide reported smoking an e-cigarette, which are lauded in the vaping industry as a safer alternative to cigarettes. But the Food and Drug Administration is looking at potentially limiting or banning these e-cigarette flavors.

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The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission voted to dismiss ethics charges brought against three Republican state representatives, saying there wasn’t enough evidence to show that the men broke ethics rules by secretly signing a sexual harassment settlement with a former staffer.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Kentucky’s Republican-led legislature has passed a new two-year state budget that cuts much of state government in order to put more money into the state’s ailing pension systems.

But lawmakers also approved about $680 million in new revenue by expanding the sales tax to 17 services ranging from auto repair to country club memberships and raising the tax on cigarettes.

kentucky teacher protest
Ryland Barton

Teachers from around Kentucky descended on Frankfort Friday morning to protest a surprise pension bill that was rushed through the state legislature the day before.

At least 500 people — most of them teachers — crowded the state Capitol building after about two dozen school districts closed for the day.

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