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Health
12:45 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

New Census Bureau Figures Show 16.9% of Kentuckians Under 65 Lack Insurance

The Census Bureau figures reflect the number of Americans under 65 who lack health insurance.
Credit census.gov

Newly-released data from the U.S. Census Bureau show nearly 17 percent of Kentuckians under the age of 65 lack health insurance. Those figures are similar to the health insurance outlook in Tennessee and Indiana, as well.

In Kentucky, Daviess County has a relatively low number of those without insurance, at 14.5 percent. Logan County, meanwhile,  has one of the highest rates of uninsured people in the state, at 22.3 percent.

The Census Bureau numbers are from 2011, and take into account each state’s residents under the age of 65, looking at all races, genders, and income levels.

You can see the Census Bureau's data in a county-by-county breakdown of Kentucky here.

Tennessee's information is here, and Indiana's can be seen here.

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Regional
4:36 am
Thu August 29, 2013

ROTC Leadership School Moving to Ft. Knox

A leadership course for Army cadets will be moving to Ft. Knox, bringing thousands of college students to the post next summer.

The relocation of the Leader Development and Assessment Course is good news for Ft. Knox, which is losing a combat brigade as part of the Pentagon's force reduction.

A statement from the Army's Cadet Command says the move will consolidate summer training for its Reserve Officers Training Corps. Along with another ROTC course at the base, the summer courses will bring about 12,000 cadets and staff to Ft. Knox beginning in 2014.

The course was previously hosted by Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington.

Business
3:43 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Beshear Welcomes Dr. Schneider To Russell County

Credit Dr. Schneider Automotive Systems

A German-based auto parts manufacturer is investing $29 million dollars in Russell County – meaning more than 150 jobs are coming to the Russell Springs area. Representatives for  Dr. Schneider Automotive Systems took part in a special welcoming ceremony in Russell Springs. 

The event was attended by Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear.

Russell County Judge-Executive Gary Robertson says the company will be moving into the Hitachi Cable plant that closed down in 2007.

“That plant is pretty much work-ready,” said Robertson.  They are having to do a few renovations to some flooring, but [the plant] was already available.”

Robertson says the new operation will provide jobs for those already in Russell County and bring in new residents.

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Arts & Culture
3:41 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Nashville Symphony Musicians Agree to Pay Cuts

The Nashville Symphony performs at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center.
Credit Nashville Symphony

The Nashville Symphony has reached agreement with the Nashville Musicians Association on a new one-year labor contract.

The pact reduces the pay of the musicians by 15 percent and is effective immediately.

The ratification comes after months of negotiations between the cash-strapped symphony and its performers. The pay cut is similar to that in total compensation imposed earlier upon members of the symphony administrative staff.

Violinist and union steward Laura Ross said the musicians ratified the contract because they believe their community role is important.

Symphony President & CEO Alan Valentine said the organization is grateful for what he termed the musicians' "spirit of shared sacrifice."

Health
9:31 am
Wed August 28, 2013

New President and CEO Hired for Owensboro Health

Owensboro Health Regional Hospital
Credit Owensboro Health

Owensboro Health has hired a new president and CEO.

Philip A. Patterson will take over the positions November 1 after accepting an offer made this week by the Owensboro Health board of directors.

He inherits the posts from Jeff Barber, who resigned in January, but who has stayed on at Owensboro Health until a full-time replacement takes over.

Since 2009, Patterson has been CEO of the New York-based Bon Secours Charity Health System, a three-hospital system with net patient revenue of nearly $500 millions.

Owensboro Health Board of Directors Chairwoman Deborah Nunley told WKU Public Radio one of the challenges facing Patterson is finding ways to expand the system's geographic footprint.

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Health
8:18 am
Wed August 28, 2013

U of L Issues Demand to Norton Healthcare about UK Hospital Deal

A recent deal regarding Kosair Children's Hospital has sparked a strong reaction from the University of Louisville.

The University of Louisville is giving Norton Healthcare 30 days to back out of an agreement with the University of Kentucky to jointly operate Kosair Children's Hospital.

Norton announced the partnership last week, saying it wanted to strengthen pediatric care in the commonwealth. This surprised U of L officials, who have also been trying to negotiate a similar contract with Norton. U of L says the lease agreement for Kosair says the property "shall be used for the benefit of the University of Louisville."

U of L Vice President of Health Affairs David Dunn says the school has already acted on the assumption it would further partner with Norton and Kosair. He says the school has spent millions of dollars expanding operations at the hospital, and he expected to be reimbursed under an eventual partnership.

“And they’ve [U of L] done it with the understanding that Norton at some point—we thought it was a long time ago—would make good on their promises, and these are verbal promises.”

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Special Programs
8:08 am
Wed August 28, 2013

WKU Public Radio to Air NPR's Live Coverage of March on Washington Anniversary Events

Wednesday marks the 50th anniversary of the famous March on Washington.

WKU Public Radio will feature NPR's live coverage of Wednesday's events in Washington commemorating the 50th anniversary of the famous March on Washington.

You can hear our coverage during Here and Now, from 1-3 central, 2-4 eastern time this afternoon. Included will be President Obama's speech from the event.

You can also listen to the anniversary events through the audio streaming feature here at our website. Just click on the Listen Live button at the top of the page.

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Regional
5:57 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

Law Enforcers Putting Extra Eyes on Tailgate Parties

College football season begins this weekend and Kentucky’s Department of  Alcoholic Beverage Control says investigators will be out in force, looking for underage people drinking alcohol before and after games.
 
Director Mike Razor says the tailgating scene provides a different kind of challenge for investigators.

“In a controlled environment in licensed premises it’s easier because the licensee is our friend and they want to make sure they’re not serving underage kids,” said Razor.  “But in a tailgating scenario, you’ve got a whole lot of people out there and there’s no one really in control.”

He says those caught providing alcohol to minors could face jail time.  Investigators will be patrolling tailgate parties and stores near college campuses where football games are being played.

Education
4:35 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

Kentucky Education Commissioner Backs State Tax Reform

Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday is calling the next legislative session a “make or break year” for the state’s public school system.

“I think we’ve hit the wall for increasing student performance and without some reinvestment in public education I think kids are going to lose out.”

Holliday is asking state lawmakers to restore per student funding to their 2009 levels during  biennium budget discussions next year. He also says state grant funding needs to be restored. That will mean committing nearly $270 million dollars more to education for the next two years.

Holliday says the General Assembly can accomplish this through tax reforms and approving expanded gaming, two issues that have not made headway in the recent past.

Education will be competing with state pension and healthcare issues among the other state agencies that have seen cuts to their budgets.

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Regional
9:28 am
Tue August 27, 2013

Bowling Green Attorney Said To Be Considered for Federal Judgeship

The Louisville Courier-Journal is citing other local judges and political insiders in reporting that Bowling Green attorney Greg Stivers is being considered to fill a vacant federal judgeship in Kentucky.

U.S. Attorney David J. Hale is reportedly also being considered.

The paper says two Warren Circuit Court judges and others have indicated they've been interviewed by the Justice Department as part of the vetting process of Stivers who is outside counsel for Western Kentucky University and a partner in the 14-lawyer Bowling Green firm of Kerrick, Stivers and Coyle. The firm is an underwriter for WKU Public Radio. Federal district judges are paid $174,000 a year and are appointed for life.

Stivers' name is expected to be put forth by Kentucky senator Rand Paul, a neighbor and close friend of Stivers. According to the Warren County Clerk's office, the 53 year old Stivers was a registered Democrat until November 2009 when he switched parties as Paul was mounting his Senate campaign. Paul's Bowling Green Senate office is in a building that also houses Stivers' law firm. Federal records show Stivers contributed $800 to Paul's campaign.

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