8:58 am
Tue August 14, 2012

Gregg Unveils First Campaign Ad

Indiana Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg unveiled his first campaign television ad Tuesday that highlights his small town roots.

The 30-second spot features the former state House speaker criticizing political advertisements and instead talks about his longtime friends from his hometown of Sandborn, Indiana.

Gregg tells the story of a friend who caught cancer and moved in with others, adding he wants to keep Indiana "a place where people look out for each other.

Watch below:

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5:40 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Paul Endorses Barr in Sixth District Race

U.S. Senator Rand Paul has endorsed Republican Andy Barr in the Sixth District congressional race.

Paul announced the endorsement Monday after a chamber of commerce luncheon in Winchester. Barr is challenging Democratic U.S. Rep Ben Chandler in the Nov. 6 general election. It is the Lexington attorney's second time running against Chandler. Barr lost to Chandler in a squeaker two years ago.

Paul says he supports Barr because he is willing to cut spending.

Local News
5:17 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Kentucky Again Among Most Obese States

2011 Obesity Data

A new government survey once again ranks Kentucky among several states with very high obesity rates.

Overall, more than a third of American adults are obese, but rates vary by location. The latest figures are based on a 2011 telephone survey that asked adults their height and weight. For the first time, households with only cell phones were included.

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Arts and Humanities
4:07 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

'H.M.S. Pinafore' Opens Friday at Amphitheater

Gilbert and Sullivan’s “H.M.S. Pinafore” opens Friday at Iroquois Amphitheater. The comic operetta is part of the new “Iroquois Amphitheater Presents” series produced by Metro Parks.

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2:55 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Political Junkies Excited for Biden-Ryan Matchup at Centre College

This year's vice presidential debate at Centre College is shaping up to be a policy wonk's dream. 

Both Vice President Joe Biden and newly-minted Republican VP candidate Paul Ryan are longtime lawmakers who are steeped in policy. 

“I think it will be a substantive debate, meaning that these are both serious policymakers and they both have substantial voting records and careers to discuss, even though Congressman Ryan is relatively young at 42, he’s been in Congressman since January 1999,” says University of Louisville professor Jasmine Farrier.

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2:41 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Comer Upset Over Abramson's Dismissal of Fancy Farm Picnic

Lieutenant Governor Jerry Abramson's assertion that the Fancy Farm picnic is no longer a relevant political event has inspired a growing backlash.

In remarks reported by CN2, Abramson dismissed the picnic, saying it's too rowdy. But Agriculture Commissioner James Comer, who emceed this year's event, says when statewide officials skip the picnic, as Abramson did this year, it hurts the church and community that put the event on.

"Fancy Farm just isn’t about politics, it’s a church charity event and it’s a huge economic draw for people in Western Kentucky,” Comer says.

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1:09 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

10 Candidates Filed for JCPS School Board

Ten candidates are now running for three open seats on the Jefferson County School Board. 

The most recent to file is 29-year-old Elizabeth Berfield who moved from Illinois four years ago after working as a librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana. Berfield is now a stay at home mother of two.

To be on the JCPS board you have to be at least 24 years old and have lived in Kentucky for the last three years prior to filing.

Berfield said she has anticipated running for the school board and said she'd like to see JCPS administrators adopt a frugal mindset.

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12:37 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Fischer Discusses City Tax Options in Lane Report Interview

In an interview with the Lexington-based Lane Report, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said the city needs to diversify its tax base to help combat budget shortfalls.

About 80 percent of Metro Government's revenue comes from occupational and property taxes, which have stalled due to the economy. The mayor had to fill a $20 million deficit in his last fiscal plan while the tax base has grown at a slower rate and a structural imbalance gets wider.

Lately Fischer has been pushing a local option sales tax, adding cities need more options to raise revenue. In the one-on-one interview, he cited a recommendation from Governor Steve Beshear's Blue Ribbon Tax Commission is that cities share in the state’s sales taxes as well.

From The Lane Report:

EL: Would you raise the sales tax, ask for a share of the current state sales tax, or would you have a local-option sales tax on top of the current sales tax?

GF: Whether it’s a private business or the business of government, a more diversified revenue stream has better odds of staying level or growing. Kentucky cities do not have a sales tax component to their revenue stream. The second possibility is the local-option sales tax: where the citizens of a city can vote on a specific project, for a specific time period, paid for in a specific way. Most all of our competitive cities have that option as well; Kentucky cities do not. So when you see capital investments being made by other cities in their arts district, recreation center or forensic crime lab, frequently they are funded by a local-option sales tax.

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11:49 am
Mon August 13, 2012

Violence Prevention Task Force Seeks Volunteers for Response Teams

In its first official public action, Louisville's Violence Prevention Work Group has put out a call for volunteers for a new crisis response team.

As the name implies, the response team will be sent to crisis situations (typically crime scenes) to work with bystanders, family members, witnesses, etc. and help alleviate the trauma. The team would ideally help prevent the actions that spurred the creation of the Violence Prevention Work Group in the first place.

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Shots - Health Blog
9:44 am
Mon August 13, 2012

Medicaid Fight Reinvigorated With Political Light On Health Care

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., points to piles of the health care overhaul legislation during a markup hearing before the U.S. House Budget Committee last year in Washington, D.C.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 9:57 am

The addition of Rep. Paul Ryan to the GOP ticket is certain to elevate health care as a campaign issue this fall.

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