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Politics
11:31 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Kentucky General Assembly Approves State Legislative Redistricting Bill; Governor Signs

Credit File photo

Update: Gov. Steve Beshear has signed the bill. In a statement, Beshear said:  “I’m pleased that our legislators have met the constitutional requirements for new districts and that this special session was held to the minimum five-day period, and I have signed the bill so these new districts take effect immediately.  I expect these maps will withstand legal scrutiny, so all Kentuckians can be assured of appropriate representation in the General Assembly.” 

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Politics
11:06 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Matt Bevin Calls on Republican Leaders Not to Retreat on Defunding Obamacare

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Bevin
Credit mail.com

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Bevin is criticizing House Speaker John Boehner, R-Oh., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., for not taking the lead on de-funding President Obama's health care law.

The pressure comes a day after Boehner told House Republicans he does not support threats to shut down the federal government over Obamacare.

In an earlier letter signed by 80 GOP House members, including Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., conservative lawmakers urged House leadership to reject any spending bill that funds the new health care law.

Bevin has been appealing to Kentucky conservatives in his bid against McConnell in next year's primary election that this is another example of McConnell not doing enough to stand up against the president.

"As the leader of the Republican Party, Sen. McConnell should be leading the charge to de-fund Obamacare not retreating with his tail between his legs," says Bevin. "Kentucky voters have a right to know: Will Mitch McConnell join Rand Paul, Mike Lee and Ted Cruz in fighting for taxpayers or will he join Speaker Boehner in caving to President Obama?"

But just this week, Paul stood with McConnell in Kentucky to say shutting down the federal government over Obamacare was a "dumb idea."

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Arts and Humanities
9:48 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Guitar Emporium Likely to Reopen This Month

Credit Guitar Emporium

The store’s walls were mostly empty but for some signed pictures, and a few guitars. Those few guitars were of quality.

There was a Bourgeois Small Jumbo acoustic costing $3,400.  A Gibson Les Paul electric, a rare Martin electric. And while these instruments might excite guitar geeks, they’ll probably get more excited to learn where they hung: the Guitar Emporium.

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Environment
8:35 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Kentucky Senate Passes Resolution Urging Further Study of Bluegrass Pipeline Project

Williams

Update 9:39 a.m: The Senate passed the resolution by a voice vote.

Original post: The Kentucky State Senate will consider a resolution on natural gas liquids pipelines, spurred by recent surveying in Kentucky for the Bluegrass Pipeline.

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News Special
6:38 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer on Jobs, Re-Election, Liquor Sales and Taxes

Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit File photo

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer visited WFPL News for an interview Thursday. In the hourlong chat, he discussed his bid for a second term in office, the city's controversial plan to re-open a potentially dangerous jail, a recent audit of the Air Pollution Control District, an attempt in the Metro Council to restrict package liquor sales and, as always, the local option sales tax.

Here's the audio:

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Local News
4:59 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Document | Third Ethics Complaint Filed Against State Rep. John A. Arnold Jr.

A third Legislative Research Commission employee, Gloria Morgan, has filed an ethics complaint against state Rep. John A. Arnold Jr., alleging that he touched her inappropriately. Morgan's complaint follows those filed Friday by Cassaundra Cooper and Yolanda Costner.

Here's the story about Morgan's complaint.

You can read the full document below:

Education
4:50 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Rand Paul, Mitch McConnell Join Push for Kentucky Charter Schools

Credit Joseph Lord/WFPL News

A new push for Kentucky to have charter schools launched on Thursday with political leaders proclaiming their affinity for that particular type of school choice.

Sens. Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell sat on a panel with leaders from the national charter school advocates and others. The discussion was hosted by the Kentucky Charter Schools Association, which was recently created and is led by former Louisville mayoral candidate Hal Heiner. 

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Local News
4:48 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Third Woman Accuses Rep. John Arnold of Sexual Harassment, Says State Failed to Act

Credit Jonathan Meador/WFPL News

A third Kentucky Statehouse staff member has filed a complaint with the Legislative Ethics Commission, alleging that state Rep. John Arnold touched her inappropriately in 2009 and that a supervisor at the Legislative Research Commission, where she works, failed to act after she reported Arnold’s conduct.

The complaint filed by Gloria Morgan, 55, with the ethics commission on Thursday afternoon accuses Arnold of walking beside her as she left her office, stroking her back and asking her if she was going to “come out and play” that night.

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Local News
4:12 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Greg Stumbo Says His Office Properly Handled Sexual Harassment Claims Against Rep. John Arnold

Greg Stumbo
Credit Rae Hodge/Kentucky Public Radio

Amid a growing sexual harassment scandal surrounding a longtime Democratic legislator, Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo on Thursday shot down suggestions that lawmakers covered up the claims.

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Politics
2:57 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Louisville Councilwoman Cheri Bryant Hamilton Proposes Ending Liquor Sales After 2 a.m.

Louisville Metro Councilwoman Cheri Bryant Hamilton, D-5, is proposing an ordinance to end alcohol sales after 2 a.m. at retail package stores as a way to help reduce crime.

But some community activists argue council members are using liquor sales as a scapegoat.

Over two-dozen liquor stores carry special licenses that allow alcohol sales up to 4 a.m., and the vast majority are concentrated in west Louisville.

The bill would exempt businesses such as bars and restaurants, and is likely to affect 24-hour convenience stores.

Hamilton did not respond to our request for comment, but one of the bill's five co-sponsors, Councilman David James, D-6, says police statistics do show a heavy concentration of crime surrounding stores that sell alcohol for extended hours.

"Eighty-nine percent of the businesses that sell alcohol in retail package form after 2 a.m. are located in west Louisville. And around those areas we have a high number of alcohol related criminal offenses," he says.

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