Louisville, Kentucky – Hunter Bates has decided not to appeal a court decision that he did not meet the residency requirements to run for Lieutenant Governor. As a result, gubernatorial candidate Ernie Fletcher will be naming another running mate. In an emotional statement issued at Republican headquarters in Louisville, Bates said he was leaving the ticket with his head held high. Bates worked for several years in Washington as a legal counsel and staff assistant for U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell.
Frankfort, Kentucky – Governor Patton has signed legislation which encourages the development of a self-determination model for people with disabilities. House Bill 501 directs the Commission on Services and Supports for Individuals with Mental Retardation and Other Developmental Disabilities to make recommendations for such a model. The recommendations will be submitted to the Department of Medicaid Services.
Frankfort, Kentucky – A public ceremony will be held on April 24 to induct Joe Survant as Kentucky's Poet Laureate for 2003 and 2004. The ceremony will be held in the Capital Rotunda in Frankfort, starting at 10:00 AM, ET. The induction ceremony for Survant will be followed by a reception in the State Capital.
Frankfort, Kentucky – The budget package approved by Kentucky's General Assembly calls for cuts of 2.6% in the current fiscal year. The budget cut amounts to about 1.4 million dollars at Western Kentucky University. University President Gary Ransdell says that cut is "unpleasant", but manageable.
The General Assembly is continuing to provide full funding for the "Bucks for Brains" program, which has been used by Western in the past to help encourage private giving. The program provides endowment matching money.
Bowling Green, Kentucky – The Western Kentucky Hilltopper Basketball team and the WKU Lady Toppers are Sun Belt Conference Tournament Champions. The Lady Toppers defeated Middle Tennessee State 86 to 83 in the final game of the Sun Belt Conference Women's Basketball Tournament. The WKU men's team then defeated Middle Tennessee State by a score of 64 to 52. It was the third consecutive Sun Belt Conference Tournament Championship for the Hilltoppers.