When Adam Shay overdosed on heroin at 21 in 2014, his kidney and pancreas went to Karen Goodwin, a recovering addict herself. That unintended consequence of the opioid epidemic brought Goodwin together with Adam's mom, Marlene Shay.

At StoryCorps in Beachwood, Ohio, Shay recalls the day she got the call that every mother dreads.

Adam "had been in and out of rehab over the last three years, but he had been sober for a year and seemingly had it all together," she says. "And that day, we got a call from his fiancée that he overdosed and was slipping away."

No Public Money Used to Settle Sexual Harassment Case

Nov 16, 2017
J. Tyler Franklin, WFPL

The head of Kentucky's Legislative Research Commission says no public money was used to settle sexual harassment claims against four state lawmakers.

LRC Executive Director David Byerman said no taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims in the two years he has been in the position. He said no such money could be spent without the approval of the commission in an open meeting.

Kentucky Democratic Party

The new leader of the Kentucky Democratic Party says the “Republican experiment” has failed. 

In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Chairman Ben Self accuses the GOP of waging a war on the middle class by creating right-to-work and prevailing wage laws. 

He also thinks sexual harassment allegations looming over Republicans and a pension proposal rejected by many public employees jeopardizes some House GOP members in next year’s elections.

Republicans gained control of the Kentucky House last year for the first time since 1921, but Self believes Democrats have a real opportunity to take back the chamber.

Wednesday was National Philanthropy Day and Western Kentucky University celebrated in a big way.  The school announced a $1.3 million gift from George and Cynthia Nichols to support the school’s diversity initiatives. 

Cynthia Nichols said she and her husband were both first-generation college students.

"I had no clue what I wanted to get involved with, and really didn't know how I could afford it.  I credit Western Kentucky University and this entire community that wrapped their arms around us and took us forward, stated Nichols.  "What's also important about going to college is sustainability. Once you get them here, how to you engage them to keep them here?"

Americans have until Dec. 15 to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act and residents in Kentucky’s Green River area are coming out to enroll  in high numbers. One local expert says uncertainty over the future of health care is a big reason why.

Many Americans, and many Kentucky residents, are unsure of what their options are for health insurance because of the national controversy over Obamacare, and some incorrect reports that it has collapsed.

MSHA

The U.S. Senate voted along party lines Wednesday, 52 to 46, to narrowly confirm President Trump’s  nominee to lead the Mine Safety and Health Administration, or MSHA. The country’s top mine safety position has been vacant since January as coal mining fatalities have risen to a two-year high. Trump’s choice to fill the post is facing opposition from congressional Democrats and safety advocates. 


Ira Gelb/Creative Commons

Kentucky’s hotel industry is being enlisted to help fight human trafficking, a crime that Attorney General Andy Beshear says is occurring in every community.

“Today we are giving traffickers notice that we are fighting back with a strong team who is committed to training thousands of hotel staff on how to help a victim escape and put an end to this crime," Beshear said in a press release.

Beshear announced a new partnership Tuesday that will include a training program called See Something-Say Something-Save a Life.  Employees in the hotel industry will learn how to identify and report human trafficking.

Ex-Kentucky Speaker Out of Hospital Following Resignation

Nov 14, 2017
Ryland Barton

Kentucky's former Republican House speaker has been released from a hospital where he went for treatment days after resigning his leadership position amid sexual harassment allegations.

Speaker Pro Tem David Osborne said Tuesday that Rep. Jeff Hoover's release from the hospital was confirmed by Hoover's family. Osborne says Hoover is "doing well" and his family requests privacy as he recovers at home.

Hoover was hospitalized last week for a heart-related issue.

J. Tyler Franklin, WFPL

Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration is asking for a redo of an analysis that says his proposed changes to the teacher pension system would cost taxpayers an extra $4.4 billion over the next 20 years.

Bevin has proposed moving future teachers into 401(k)-style retirement plans and increasing the amount of money the state puts towards the system every year.

The analysis by Cavanaugh Macdonald Consulting showed that under Bevin’s plan, the state wouldn’t see savings until 2034.

Budget Director John Chilton said the analysis used incorrect assumptions of retirement patterns and of how much money the pension system would make from its investments.

Green River Area Development District

The small community of Rosine in Ohio County now has high-speed Internet thanks to a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The new service has led to the creation of a community Internet center and is even connecting to the father of bluegrass music.

Rosine is the home of Bill Monroe, the father of bluegrass music, and a museum in his honor is under construction. Now the new museum will be able to have high-speed Internet. It’s one of the bonuses for Rosine that comes along with an $800,000 grant from the USDA’s Rural Utilities Service. The grant was awarded to the Evansville-based company Q-Wireless. 

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LRS LIVE Replay: Devon Gilfillian and 8 Track Love

Devon Gilfillian and 8 Track Love were the featured musicians at Lost River Sessions LIVE on Oct. 19 at the Capitol Arts Center in Bowling Green. The show came just days before Gilfillian inked a deal with Capitol Records.

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