Politics
8:30 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Senator Joe Donnelly Wants Consensus on Filibuster Reform

Joe Donnelly
Credit U.S. Senate

U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., says even though the filibuster has been abused in recent years, his party should seek a consensus with Republicans before changing the chamber's rules.

Critics have complained that the filibuster is too often used to block important votes. Since 2007, the GOP has used the parliamentary tactic to block legislation and nominees an unprecedented 386 times.

In the last weeks of 2012, Democratic Leader Harry Reid and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell jousted over whether to restrict filibusters.

Donnelly says the negotiations to address the dysfunction should continue, and that Reid should find a general agreement with the GOP.

"He will be talking with our Republican friends over the next week or two to try to see if there is a consensus that can form, and I am hopeful that can happen," he says.

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Local News
8:25 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Hearing Officer to Make Recommendations on Councilwoman Shanklin's Ethics Case By Jan. 31

Shanklin attorney Aubrey Williams addresses Ethics Commission last year.

Over the next month, the officer assigned to embattled Louisville Metro councilwoman Barbara Shanklin’s ethics hearing will craft a response to the case.

Shanklin has been accused of violating five provisions of the city’s ethics code, including using her position to benefit relatives. 

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Arts and Humanities
7:49 am
Mon January 7, 2013

"The Whipping Man: On Equality, Freedom and the Legacy of Slavery

Actors Theatre of Louisville associate artistic director Meredith McDonough makes her directorial debut in her new role this week with Matthew Lopez's popular drama "The Whipping Man," set against the backdrop of Passover observances at the end of the Civil War.

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Local News
7:00 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Colleagues Say J. Blaine Hudson's Legacy of Activism and Education Served Crucial Role in City

J. Blaine Hudson
Credit University of Louisville

When J. Blaine Hudson became dean of the University of Louisville’s College of Arts and Sciences eight years ago, it was significant. He was leading a school he had not only attended, but had years ago protested because of the lack of opportunities for African-American students.

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Environment
6:30 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Louisville's Air Program Marks Successes, But Health Concerns Linger

A scene off of Bells Lane, in Rubbertown
Erica Peterson WFPL

Trish Lee’s small yellow house is a block away from Bells Lane, where many of the Rubbertown factories are concentrated. From her backyard, she can’t see the chemical plants, rail yards and oil refineries that have stood down the street for decades — but she can smell them just about anywhere.

“Sometimes it burns,” she said. “Like you can go outside, sometimes at night, and your eyes actually burn.”

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Environment
5:31 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Warren County 'Net-Zero' School Receives $37,000 For the Power it Generated

A classroom at Richardsville Elementary, which is situated to take advantage of natural sunlight.
Warren County School District

A school in Bowling Green is cashing in on the energy efficient features the district installed when it was built. Warren County schools received a check from the power company this fall for more than $37,000—payment for the energy the school generated.

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The Two-Way
3:41 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

GOP Senators Warn Of Tough Road For Hagel Nomination

Former Sen. Chuck Hagel, seen here in 2008, is reported to be President Obama's pick to be the next defense secretary.
Dave Weaver AP

Originally published on Sun January 6, 2013 5:19 pm

President Obama will on Monday name former Sen. Chuck Hagel to be his next defense secretary, an administration official confirmed to NPR.

The former Republican senator from Nebraska is a Vietnam veteran. He would succeed Leon Panetta, who is retiring.

Our original post follows:

Republican senators say former Sen. Chuck Hagel can expect a tough nominating process if President Obama names him to be the next defense secretary.

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Environment
2:52 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Starting This Week: A Series on Health Near Rubbertown

Erica Peterson WFPL

Starting this week, WFPL will begin airing a month-long series about past and present air pollution in the city’s Rubbertown neighborhood, and the health effects for those who live nearby. Installments will air during Morning Edition, Here and Now and All Things Considered every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and will be posted here on Smokestack when they air.

Politics
1:04 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Noise and Notes: Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Previewing The 2013 General Assembly

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit File photo

Mayor Greg Fischer is halfway through his first term in office, and he is marking the mid-term by highlighting job creation and making Louisville a more compassionate city.

Despite his optimism and business acumen, much of Fischer’s tenure has been gobbled up dealing with "cleaning house" at different departments, auditing city services and steep budget deficits.

Then there is the surge in homicides, which increased by 28 percent in 2012.

The mayor's task force issued a report that says there’s a need for violence prevention director and other serious intervention from Metro Government on a number of fronts. But some Metro Council members have question if that's the best use of city resources and many residents are taking a "wait and see" approach.

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Education
12:33 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Final Week to Apply for JCPS School Choices

Credit File photo

Jefferson County families have one week to apply for their top public school choices for next school year and the district is opening some offices with extended hours this week to help complete the process.

“Parents that will be able to get their applications in by the Jan. 11 deadline will have a much greater opportunity to get the choices that they want and so that’s why we encourage parents to meet that deadline and not put it off any longer than they need to,” said JCPS spokesman Ben Jackey.

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