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Environment
5:40 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Louisville Could Benefit From a Tree Ordinance, Expert Says

Census Data Wikimedia Commons

Louisville’s tree canopy has been reduced in recent years by invasive pests and storms. Several steps have been taken to begin looking at the issue, but the city still lacks a comprehensive tree ordinance.

Enter Ed Macie. He’s a regional urban forester with the U.S. Forest Service who’s been helping cities craft tree ordinances for decades. And he’ll be in Louisville today and tomorrow to discuss the benefits of such an ordinance.

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Politics
4:24 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Citing Racial Disparities, Senator Rand Paul Favors Restoration of Felon Voting Rights

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.

Acknowledging racial disparities in U.S. drug and sentencing laws, Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is calling for the restoration of felon voting rights in state and federal laws.

The Tea Party favorite also says the consequence of those punitive measures is the chief culprit behind voter disenfranchisement in African-American communities.

"The biggest impediment to voting rights, right now, are convicted felons. One in three young black males has been convicted of a felony and they’ve lost their voting rights. I think it dwarfs all other (election-related) issues," says Paul.

Paul made the comments at a forum hosted by the Plymouth Community Renewal Center in west Louisville on Monday. It is part of the libertarian-leaning senator's continued effort to close the gap between Republicans and black voters, which began with a speech at Howard University this spring.

Among the measures Paul's office touted to those in attendance was co-sponsoring a bill with Democratic U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont to give judges more discretion in sentencing federal drug cases.

Speaking to a handful of community activists and residents, Paul outlined how he also hopes to put forward a measure that would restore a felon's voting rights at the federal level five years after their release.

"We haven't decided which crimes yet, but I think particularly for non-violent drug crimes where people made a youthful mistake I think they ought to get their rights back," he says.

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Local News
4:21 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Cards Rise in One College Football Poll, Hold Spot in Another

WFPL file photo
Rick Howlett

The Louisville Cardinals gained a spot in one national college football poll this week and held their position in another.

U of L rose to sixth in the latest USA Today/coaches poll and remains at number seven in the Associated Press poll of sportswriters.

Coach Charlie Strong’s team is 3-0 following Saturday’s victory at Kentucky.    The Cards finish their non- conference schedule next weekend against Florida International. 

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Local News
4:06 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Final Section of Old Milton-Madison Bridge to be Brought Down Thursday

The old Milton-Madison Bridge (right), is being demolished

The demolition of the final section of the old Milton-Madison Bridge has been delayed until later this week.  

The 600-foot section was scheduled to be brought down Tuesday morning, but the blast is now postponed until Thursday at 9:00am.

Officials are asking residents in the Milton, Kentucky area to stay indoors around the time of the blast as a precaution.

The 84 year old Ohio River Bridge truss is being replaced and its piers are being renovated.

The new span alongside the bridge will be closed during the blast, as will river traffic.

Environment
3:54 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Kentucky Legislator Pre-Files Bill to Address Eminent Domain for Bluegrass Pipeline

Opponents of the Bluegrass Pipeline demonstrated in Frankfort earlier this summer.
Erica Peterson WFPL

A Western Kentucky lawmaker has pre-filed a bill to clarify Kentucky's eminent domain law. The topic has been the subject of much speculation over the past few months, as a company seeks to build a natural gas liquids pipeline across Kentucky. The developers of the Bluegrass Pipeline say they believe they have the right of eminent domain under Kentucky law, but numerous others including the legal counsel of the Energy and Environment Cabinet and the Kentucky Attorney General disagree.

The bill was filed by Representative John Tilley of Hopkinsville.

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Environment
3:23 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

More Bad News for Louisville’s Air Pollution Control District

Last month, a Kentucky Division for Air Quality audit found that years of Louisville’s particulate pollution monitoring data was flawed. Now, that finding has been confirmed by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

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Politics
2:41 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Kentucky House Committee Investigating Claims Against John Arnold to Meet on Tuesday

John Arnold
Credit Jonathan Meador/WFPL News

A special state House committee tasked with investigating claims of sexual harassment against outgoing Democratic Rep. John Arnold will meet for the first time Tuesday morning in Frankfort.

The five-member investigating committee formed by House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, has been given the job of examining claims made by employees of the Legislative Research Commission whom alleged that Arnold sexually harassed and assaulted them over a period of several years.

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Arts and Humanities
2:13 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

REVIEW | New Fights, More Horror in 'Dracula'

Randolph Curtis Rand in "Dracula" at Actors Theatre of Louisville.
Bill Brymer Actors Theatre of Louisville

Some holiday shows become tradition, annual outings passed down through and binding across generations. But attending Actors Theatre of Louisville's "Dracula" feels more like a ritual (like the season's first pumpkin ale or latté), a key event in observing the transition from summer to fall.

"Dracula" opened Friday the 13th and runs through Halloween in the Bingham Theatre. Directed by William McNulty, the production changes in small ways from year to year, but it rarely fails to properly usher in the longer nights of autumn.  The gothic thriller is the theater's second-longest running production, and ahead of the national curve as the country's only annual "Dracula" production. 

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Local News
1:01 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

WFPL is at Parking Week in Downtown Louisville

Louisville Public Media

Parking Day has expanded to Parking Week, which means this week Louisvillians can wander over to Metro Hall and participate—and WFPL will be there, too.

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