Bowling Green, KY – The Executive Director of the Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling says too many people underestimate the cost of compulsive gambling. Mike Stone cites a University of Illinois study which estimates a cost of thirteen thousand dollars per year, per compulsive gambler.
Frankfort, KY – Governor Fletcher's Administration wants better drug treatment---- instead of prison sentences--- for offenders. Lieutenant Governor Steve Pence says the state plans to cut the number of non-violent offenders in prison, and could delay the opening of a one thousand bed prison which is under construction in Elliot County.
Williamsburg, KY – Kentucky Lottery Officials are concerned about the impact the new Tennessee Lottery will have on ticket sales in the Commonwealth. Kentucky Lottery President and Chief Executive Arch Gleason estimates Kentucky will lose more than 48 million dollars in sales in the 2004-2005 fiscal year. Gleason also warns that the loss could reach more than 71 million dollars in the following fiscal year.
Frankfort, KY – A bill passed today by the Kentucky House would create a felony offense for a form of credit-card theft. The bill would punish people who "skim" credit cards. The practice consists of installing an electronic device between a credit card reader and a telephone wall jack to obtain credit card information.
Bowling Green, KY – The Speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives has filed his formal papers to run for another term in the General Assembly. Richards, who is a Democrat from Warren County, is the longest serving Speaker of the House in Kentucky history.
Richards has been in the Kentucky House since 1976. The Speaker says he will continue to stress education issues and to work for senior citizens in nursing homes. He also pledged today to fight for lower taxes.
Frankfort, KY – A proposed constitutional amendment that deals with medical malpractice cases has cleared its first legislative hurdle. The measure was approved by a Senate Committee today in Frankfort.
If it is passed by the General Assembly and ratified by the state's voters, the measure would allow lawmakers to rein in medical malpractice cases. The proposal is sponsored by Senate President David Williams, a Republican from Burkesville.
Frankfort, KY – Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher is defending his decision to take money from schools and universities to shore up the state budget. The Republican who left Congress to become Kentucky's Governor says education was spared until the last possible minute.
Bowling Green, KY – Western Kentucky University President Gary Ransdell says some programs at the university will have to be eliminated to meet significant budget cuts ordered by the Fletcher Administration. Speaking with members of the university's governing board today, Ransdell indicated that no decisions have been made at this point about what to eliminate. He stressed that one of his priorities will be to preserve funding for programs which excell at the institution.
Bowling Green, KY – U-S Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY) believes the American military presence in Iraq can be significantly reduced by the end of June. Speaking with reporters by phone from Kuwait today, Bunning said U-S officials in Iraq believe progress is being made in several aspects of the re-building effort, including work on refineries and utilities. He says "the general consensus" is that U-S manpower can be reduced to about one hundred thousand by that point.
Frankfort, KY – Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher has endorsed a "fetal homicide" bill that would declare that life begins at conception. The legislation he is backing would apply homicide statutes to a fetus, from the time of conception.