Local News
10:52 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Barzun Sworn Takes Oath to Become U.S. Ambassador to Britain

U.S. State Department

Louisville businessman Matthew Barzun has assumed his role as Ambassador to the United Kingdom. Barzun was sworn in by Secretary of State John Kerry at the State Department on Thursday.

Barzun was nominated for the post by President Obama last month, and the Senate was unanimous in his confirmation.

University of Louisville political science professor Charles Ziegler says this is an important diplomatic post.

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Local News
9:44 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

UPS Releases Information on Crew Killed in Birmingham Plane Crash

Credit National Transportation Safety Board

UPS has released the following information on the pilot and co-pilot who were killed in this week's plane crash in Birmingham, Alabama:

The Jefferson County, Alabama, Medical Examiner has confirmed that two of our crewmembers, Captain Cerea Beal, Jr. and First Officer Shanda Fanning, lost their lives in the accident involving UPS Flight 1354.

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8:59 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Louisville Metro Council Republicans Propose 'Sweeping Changes' to Discretionary Funds

Louisville Metro Council Republicans unveil discretionary spending changes.
Credit Phillip M. Bailey

Calling past efforts to reform discretionary spending practices watered down, Louisville Metro Council Republicans unveiled a series of "sweeping changes" to neighborhood development funds.

The proposals come in the wake of Democratic Councilwoman Barbara Shanklin's expulsion trial. Shanklin avoided removal over charges of alleged misconduct and unethical use of taxpayer money by just one vote.

Among the changes being touted by GOP members are for the majority of discretionary funds to be used on capital projects rather than towards non-profit groups.

Each council members receives $75,000 in Neighborhood Development Funds, $100,000 in Capital Infrastructure Funds and $30,000 for office expenses.

Republicans hold a nine-member minority on the council, but are seeking to cap the neighborhood accounts at $15,000 while allocating the rest for infrastructure needs.

Councilman Ken Fleming, R-7, says past efforts to amend spending rules have been ineffective and too slow, adding that GOP lawmakers believe it’s important to act now in order to restore the public's trust.

"We decided after what happened over these past two weeks to go ahead and make this more permanent, more accountable and more transparent," he says. "We want to have the strongest confidence that the public has in us as well as making sure that we elevate and solidify the trust has in using taxpayer’s money."

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Local News
5:02 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Kentucky Senate Republican Leaders Unveil Redistricting Map


Kentucky Senate President Robert Stivers today revealed a new redistricting map that would split only three counties and create no new open seats.

In a press conference, Stivers said the map, which was crafted by Republican leadership in the Senate, represents “a process of mathematics and criteria, not politics,” according to spokeswoman Lourdes Baez, who added that Senate Democrats were also consulted on the plan.

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Arts and Humanities
4:30 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Page-turner on Stage: Theatre [502] Opens Thriller 'Edgewise'

Ian Weber and Michael Mayes in Theatre [502]'s "Edgewise."
Credit Theatre [502]

Louisville’s Theatre [502] continues its third season this week with a speculative war thriller set in a fast food restaurant. Written by Eliza Clark, “Edgewise” is set in a near-future dystopian America in the grips of a global war. Against this chaotic backdrop, three teenagers report to work at a fast-food burger chain. 

"Somebody's got to turn the fryers on," says director Mike Brooks. "Folks are going to work and they're going to hit the drive-thru whether there's an air strike going on or not." 

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3:31 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Is There Enough Demand For Two Natural Gas Liquids Pipelines Through Kentucky?

Kinder Morgan

Call it the Battle of the Pipelines.

For the past two months, I’ve been reporting on the Bluegrass Pipeline—a proposal to build a new natural gas liquids pipeline across Kentucky and Ohio to connect existing infrastructure. Now, another company has announced plans to re-purpose an existing natural gas line across the Commonwealth for the same type of materials.

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Local News
2:59 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Kentucky's Jobless Rate Rises Again in July

Kentucky's unemployment rate rose slightly in July as the state's civilian labor force shrank, marking the third straight monthly increase in the jobless rate.

The Office of Employment and Training says the statewide rate rose to 8.5 percent,  up  from 8.4 percent in June.

The jobless rate has risen every month since April, when unemployment stood at 7.9 percent.

The national unemployment rate dropped to 7.4 percent in July, down from 7.6 percent the prior month.

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1:21 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Senator Rand Paul Calls on President Obama to End Foreign Aid to Egypt Amid Growing Violence

Citing the expanding chaos in Egypt, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., says President Obama isn't going far enough in the U.S. response to reports that hundreds have died amid violent protests.

The president rebuked the country's military leaders for its crackdown on demonstrators. In a brief press conference, Obama announced the U.S. is cancelling a joint military exercise with Egypt next month.

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1:00 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Kentucky's Long History of International Diplomacy

Matthew Barzun
Credit U.S. State Department

Today in Washington, Louisville businessman Matthew Barzun will be sworn in as the United States ambassador to the Court of St. James’—in other words, the United Kingdom. As such, he joins a long line of Kentuckians who have gone off to represent their government in foreign capitals.

Actually, this is Mr. Barzun’s second ambassadorship. In the first Obama term, he served as our minister to Sweden. He seems to be the first Louisvillian ever to hold posts to two countries.

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12:33 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Louisville Teacher and Councilwoman Seek Volunteers To Help Clean Up West End Bus Stops

Louisville Metro Councilwoman Attica Scott has organized a bus stop cleanup day in her district to help quell nerves associated with the first day of school.

Scott is the councilwoman for District 1 and she says the cleanup this Saturday will target bus stops in three neighborhoods: Park Duvalle, Chickasaw, and Parkland.

“We have dozens that need to be cleaned. We’ll probably get to 15 to 20 of them because we don’t want to just focus on the bus stop proper but we also want to look at entire block," she says.

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