Rick Howlett

Broadcast Managing Editor

Rick has been a member of the WFPL News team since 2001 and has covered numerous beats and events over the years.   Most recently he’s been tracking the Indiana General Assembly and the region’s passion for sports, especially college basketball.

Pages

Local News
4:51 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Indiana Lt. Gov. Skillman Returning to Private Sector

Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman is heading south after she leaves the Statehouse to lead an economic development group.

Skillman announced Tuesday she will become president and CEO of Radius Indiana on Feb. 1. Radius is a group of business and government leaders representing eight southern Indiana counties.

Read more
Local News
4:42 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

WFPL Discusses: Should Louisville Try to Land an NBA Team?

Louisville Metro Councilman David Tandy says he’s open to the idea of luring a National Basketball Association team to town.

Tandy was among the guests who spoke on a WFPL news special today on the subject.

The 4th District councilman says he believes an NBA team could co-exist with the University of Louisville basketball teams in the KFC Yum Center, where U of L is now the primary tenant. He says city officials should do everything they can to maximize the financially-plagued arena’s economic potential and raise Louisville’s profile.

Read more
Local News
3:57 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Auditors Finish Probe of Indiana Tax Accounting Errors

Auditors investigating Indiana's Department of Revenue are saying outdated technology and a work culture that sacrificed accuracy for speed led to $526 million in tax errors from the state.

Auditors for the international accounting firm Deloitte also discovered additional errors with 55,000 taxpayer accounts and 2,880 tax refund requests that were never processed. They credited new management at the agency with trying to correct the problems.

Revenue commissioner Mike Alley says he has been working to change the culture since he took over in May.

Read more
Local News
1:29 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Western Kentucky to Get 364 Area Code, Ten-Digit Local Dialing

The Kentucky Public Service Commission has approved a new area code for western Kentucky.

The new area code, 364, will be added to the current 270 footprint.

PSC Spokesman Andrew Melnykovich say with the overlay, people who currently use 270 won’t have to change numbers, but there will be a different dialing pattern.

"In order to distinguish between the two area codes within the same area, ten-digit dialing with become mandatory for all local calls. That’s similar to what you see in most big cities in the United States today," he said.

Read more
Politics
3:57 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Ousted Indiana House Democratic Leader Re-elected to National Party Committee

A national campaign group has re-elected former Indiana House Speaker and Democratic leader Patrick Bauer to its board.

The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee helps Democrats campaign for seats in statehouses across the country.

It re-elected Bauer to its board Thursday.

Bauer’s standing among Indiana House Democrats has fallen this year.

Local News
11:55 am
Thu December 13, 2012

Officials Defend Tolling To Help Fund New Bridges

From brentspencebridgecorridor.com

State and federal officials say new Ohio River bridges cannot be built without tolling as part of the financing plan.

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear this week signed a memorandum of understanding with Ohio’s governor to construct a new, $2.5 billion double-deck span to replace the Brent Spence Bridge linking Covington and Cincinnati.

Beshear says there’s no chance the federal government will pick up the whole cost of this project or two new bridges planned for the Louisville area.

Read more
Local News
4:41 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Kentucky Flu Activity 'Widespread,' Vaccinations Urged

The Kentucky Department for Public Health says flu activity across the commonwealth has increased to widespread, meaning there are outbreaks of the illness in at least half of the state’s regions.

State Epidemiologist Dr. Craig Humbaugh says the flu usually peaks from January through March.

"In fact, last year’s flu season was relatively late in coming, and this year’s flu season is starting early," he said.

Politics
4:24 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

In Farewell Speech, Lugar Calls for More Unity, Less Posturing

Outgoing U.S. Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana says Congress and the president need to establish a closer working relationship, especially in the area of national security.

The Republican, who’s leaving Capitol Hill after 36 years, delivered his farewell address on the Senate floor today , saying the current dialogue on national security is one of the least constructive he’s ever witnessed.

Read more
Local News
1:39 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Indiana HS Coach Defends 107-2 Basketball Blowout

Wikipedia
File photo

The girls’ basketball coach at Indiana’s Bloomington South High School says he and his players were not trying to embarrass an opponent they defeated by a score of 107-2 this week.

The team’s rout of Arlington has sparked outrage among some fans and prompted a state prep sports association official to say he never wants to see anything so one-sided again.

Bloomington South coach Larry Winters tells the Indianapolis Star that he played everyone on his team and they didn’t stop shooting because he felt that would have been more embarrassing to Arlington.

Education
11:43 am
Wed December 12, 2012

Bennett Named Florida Education Commissioner

From tonybennett2012.com

Indiana's recently ousted state school superintendent is Florida's new education commissioner.

The State Board of Education selected Tony Bennett, a Republican who lost a bid for re-election in Indiana last month, today in Tampa.

The board picked Bennett from a slate of three finalists.

The others were Murray State University President Randy Dunn, who once served as state superintendent in Illinois, and Arlington, Va., education consultant Charles Hokanson, a former deputy assistant U.S. secretary of education in President George W. Bush's administration.

Read more

Pages