The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet is warning swimmers and boaters to stay away from several streams and tributaries in Eastern Kentucky.
The waterways are contaminated with E.coli bacteria, which comes from human and animal waste, and the problem is so extensive that the swimming advisories have been expanded to include all of Kentucky’s lakes and rivers after heavy rainfall.
Untreated sewage is released into streams and rivers from combined sewer systems—or CSOs—in cities like Louisville. It also runs off agricultural fields, leaks from aging septic tanks and is deposited directly into the river through straight pipes in some rural areas. Tim Joice of the Kentucky Waterways Alliance says data shows the number of stream miles affected by E.coli is growing, and it could take another 15 to 20 years to get the problem under control.
“We likely, especially in cities, will not see substantial improvement in CSO issues or insufficient wastewater treatment capacity issues for another number of years,” Joice said.
The state’s swimming advisories—which include the Upper Cumberland River, Kentucky River and Licking River—are in effect until further notice.
Kentucky’s two U.S. Senate candidates are reporting major fundraising hauls.
Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes says she took in over $4 million during the second quarter ending in June, breaking the record for most money raised by a Kentucky Senate candidate in a single quarter.
That record was previously held by Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, the man Grimes is trying to defeat this November. McConnell raised $2.9 million during the fourth quarter of 2008.
Overall, the Grimes Senate campaign has raised nearly $11.3 million dollars to date.
Shortly after the Grimes camp released their fundraising totals Tuesday, the McConnell campaign announced they raised $3.1 million dollars in the second quarter. The incumbent reported $9.8 million in cash on hand--about $3.6 million more than his Democratic opponent.
The race between Grimes and McConnell is shaping up to be one of the most closely-watched Senate races in the nation, with many analysts predicting it could also be one of the most expensive Senate campaigns in history.
Their bodies are sore, but some WKU fraternity brothers are having the most memorable summer of their lives. Twelve members of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity are wrapping up a cross-country bike ride to raise money for Alzheimer’s research.
Drew Tingle of Franklin is riding in honor of his grandfather who passed away with dementia. WKU Public Radio reached Tingle as he was pedaling through West Virginia. He shared one of the highlights of the trek.
"We were climbing Wolf Creek Pass in Colorado. We probably climbed ten miles," said Tingle. After climbing for several days we got to the top and we all got to lay in snow in the middle of June on top of this mountain 11,000 feet in the air."
The college students typically pedal 70 to 80 miles a day and have faced all types of terrain from snowy mountains to dry deserts. Along the way, they’ve relied on the generosity of strangers, including many churches for housing.
The Campbellsville University Board of Regents was set to meet today to further explore efforts to change the way it selects board members – including a discussion over whether it could elect a non-Baptist trustee.
The Herald-Leader reports a draft copy of the changes was presented to the Kentucky Baptist Convention last week. The KBC was not supportive of the changes and plans an officers’ meeting regarding the issue on Thursday.
The Kentucky Baptist Convention contributes $ 1 million in funding per year to Campbellsville University in a relationship that stretches back decades. The funding represents roughly two percent of the university's overall annual budget of $57 million.
Bowling Green Police are investigating a fatal stabbing that occurred near downtown.
Just before 10:00 p.m. Monday night, police received a call of a fight in a parking lot at the corner of Fairview Avenue and the 31W Bypass. By the time officers arrived, a car had left the scene with the victim inside.
Officers caught up with the vehicle at the corner of 6th and State Streets. Police say 55-year-old Phillip Cox of Bowling Green was stabbed once and later died at the hospital.
Police questioned the female driver of the car, but so far no one has been charged.
WKU Athletic Director Todd Stewart speaks about the move to Conference USA.
After 32 years as a member of the Sun Belt Conference, WKU has now officially become a member of the newly re-aligned, 14 member Conference USA. It's a move Athletic Director Todd Stewart has been working toward for several years, but even he admits it's a high-risk, high-reward situation.
Stewart spoke with Joe Corcoran about leaving the comforts of the Sun Belt for the new challenges ahead.
Voters in two precincts of Cave City are set to vote up or down on alcohol sales. A special option election is scheduled for July 22 for the 2,685 voters registered at the two precincts. The question on the ballot is "Are you in favor of the sale of alcoholic beverages in cave City?"
The effort to bring packaged liquor sales to cave City was spearheaded by the "Cave City Forward Committee". which began circulating petitions in November to get the referendum on the ballot.
Cave City has been "moist" since 2006, when restaurants were allowed to sell liquor by the drink if they meet certain state law requirements.
Kentucky's first experimental hemp crop has grown with the arrival of another shipment of imported seeds that immediately went into the ground.
The state's agriculture department says nearly 950 pounds of Canadian seeds cleared customs without any legal drama. An earlier shipment from Italy was detained for a time by customs officials in Louisville, setting off a legal fight between the state agency and the federal government.
Adam Watson, the agriculture department's hemp coordinator, said the Canadian seeds were planted last week. He said seeds put into the soil in late May have already sprouted into leafy plants that are six feet high or taller.
Test plots across the state will help researchers and farmers determine the crop's potential in Kentucky.
The Executive Branch Ethics Commission has reached settlements with two brothers who worked in the state Agriculture Department under former Commissioner Richie Farmer.
The Courier-Journal reports Bill Ed Mobley admitted claiming pay for times he didn't carry out his job duties. He also admitted violating the ethics code by claiming mileage reimbursement for trips he didn't take. He was reprimanded and fined him $3,000.
The commission found that Steve Mobley violated the ethics code for processing his brother's time sheets and mileage reimbursement claims and for failing to report a gift. He was reprimanded and fined $2,500.
The commission already reached settlements with Farmer and four other employees, and one case is still pending.
Farmer also pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges and is serving 27 months in prison.