Politics

Politics
1:33 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Secular Group Plans to Open Chapter in Kentucky

The SCA's state chapter rollout map

A national group that promotes the separation of church and state is looking to establish a chapter in Kentucky. 

The decade-old Secular Coalition for America lobbies for the separation of church and state on the federal level, and officials now want to bring those efforts to statehouses across the country. The SCA already has two chapters in other states and it plans to create 10 more soon. 

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Politics
12:40 pm
Mon June 4, 2012

Beshear Says Early Work Has Begun on Health Insurance Exchange

Kentucky Governor's Office

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear says early work has begun on the state's health insurance exchange.

Under the Affordable Care Act, states must build online marketplaces where residents can compare insurance plans and prices. If states don't, the federal government will run the exchanges. Beshear has promised to sign an executive order implementing the exchange if the Supreme Court rules the ACA is constitutional, but he says the state is already preparing for that outcome.

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Politics
8:00 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Hamilton to Host Forum Over Cruising, Chickasaw Park Concerns

Louisville Metro Councilwoman Cheri Bryant Hamilton, D-5, is hosting  a public meeting for residents on Monday to address growing traffic concerns.

Every Sunday dozens of motorists flock to Shawnee and Chickasaw Park to take part in makeshift events, but residents are upset about the noise and cruising that takes place.

Hamilton says neighbors have complained about the increased traffic, and the forum is to discuss what steps the city will take and if common ground can be reached.

"Cruising has returned to the West End," she says. "Buses can’t get through. EMS probably could not get through. We’re not against people having a good time, but it’s gotten out of control sometime."

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Politics
6:00 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Edelen Says He'll Keep Campaign Promise to Audit Education Funding

File photo

A busy schedule won’t keep Kentucky Auditor Adam Edelen from digging into school board funding.

Edelen is currently planning audits into special taxing districts and Medicaid managed care. His office is also required to do hundreds of audits of local and state government agencies. But Edelen says he’ll keep his campaign pledge to look at school funding. And that could include a review of the state’s public universities, too.

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Politics
11:19 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

Noise and Notes: The Dark Side of Journalism and Violent Offenders at Louisville Zoo

On this week's podcast we talked to a panel of media gurus about the trend of Louisville journalists flocking to public relations.

Reporters have always had the tendency to move on to other communication fields whether it's working for a non-profit, government agency or elected official, but with the recent cuts in media jobs the trend has accelerated as of late.

At least two good pieces on the subject have come out in the past month via Insider Louisville and The Highlander.

I sat down with Insider Louisville founder Terry Boyd, WFPL News Director Gabe Bullard and former Courier-Journal reporter Thomas Nord, who now works as a spokesman for the city's Air Pollution Control Board, about the topic.

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Politics
10:00 am
Sat June 2, 2012

Energy Association's PAC Runs Ad for Rogers

With over $1 million in cash on hand for his re-election bid, U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Ky., isn't under any serious threat in November.

But the folks at the American Chemistry Council released this ad to remind voters anyway.

Check it out (h/t PageOneKentucky):

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Politics
12:24 pm
Fri June 1, 2012

Council Members, Public Works Officials Seek Help Catching Illegal Dumpers

Joined by Public Works officials, Louisville Metro Council members Marianne Butler, D-15, and Cheri Bryant Hamilton, D-5, called on residents to help them crackdown on illegal dumping across the city.

Butler and Hamilton announced on Friday that the city will install 19 new state of the art cameras over the summer in problem areas, which have seen repeated cases of trash and other junk items being dropped off improperly. The cameras are designed to be mobile and will be moved periodically in the case of violators moving to different locations.

Butler says illegal dumping is a perennial problem in many neighborhoods, and the public can help track violators by visiting the city's website to report an incident and identify illegal dumpers caught on camera.

 "Hopefully with this we will stop the dumping," she says. "We are asking residents to go to the website. Look at the photos that are on it and help us prosecute the people who are devaluing your neighborhood. Because these people are dumping in everybody's neighborhood."

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Politics
5:01 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Ed Hart: Fischer, Beshear Dropped Ball on Kentucky Kingdom

File photo

Louisville businessman Ed Hart is dismayed at the delays in reopening Kentucky Kingdom, and he puts much of the blame on Mayor Greg Fischer and Governor Steve Beshear.

For the past few months, an investment group called Bluegrass Boardwalk Inc. has been trying to salvage the former amusement park. But officials confirmed this week that its planned reopening for next year is no longer an option because of serious  disrepair. The group's investors now say the earliest the park can open is 2014.

Two years ago, Six Flags abandoned the site due to bankruptcy and the state fair board spent almost 18 months negotiating with Hart to reopen the park. But those talks failed for reasons that have not been released.

Hart says the mayor and governor need to take a greater role in getting one of the city’s chief tourist attractions running again instead of offering excuses.

"I can't read their minds. The mayor, the governor, his people, legislators—everybody says: ‘absolutely we want Kentucky Kingdom reopened.’ Yet they do nothing about it. It’s the typical, political and bureaucratic words and no deeds,” he says. "The fair board keeps saying that opening Kentucky Kingdom is a number one priority. They said it in 2010, 2011 and again in 2012. Can you imagine how long it would take to open up if it wasn't their number one priority? It's ludicrous."

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Politics
1:53 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Company's Withdrawal Restarts Battle Between Nursing Homes and Legal System

A prominent nursing home company is ending its operations in Kentucky, and the decision has reignited a battle between the nursing home industry and legal professionals.

Earlier this week, Extendicare announced plans to lease its Kentucky nursing homes. The company said too many unnecessary lawsuits were being filed for operations to continue in the state.

Kentucky has grown into a senior living hub, and many big companies like Altria and Kindred have corporate headquarters in the state. 

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Politics
1:21 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Donnelly Flaunts GOP Support

Indiana Democratic Senate candidate Joe Donnelly has unveiled a group of Republicans who are supporting him over Tea Party candidate Richard Mourdock in the fall campaign.

The group is made up of former supporters of Republican Senator Dick Lugar, who was defeated in the GOP primary by state Treasurer Richard Mourdock. Its initial six members have pledged to cross party lines and support Donnelly over Mourdock in November.

Donnelly campaign spokeswoman Elizabeth Shappell says GOP voters will back the congressman due to his bipartisan approach.

"Moderate voices and folks who are wiling to compromise are too few and far in between these days. And that’s Joe," she says. "And in order to move this country forward, he truly believes—and as do I think many folks here in Indiana—that we need to work together and find common ground."

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