12:59 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Judge Sides with Kentucky Transportation Cabinet on Jurisdiction for Bridge Collapse Lawsuit

A cargo ship took out a 322-foot section of the Eggners Ferry Bridge in western Kentucky on January 26, 2012.

A federal judge has sided with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet in a lawsuit against the owner of a ship that damaged a western Kentucky bridge.  The ruling says the case against employees of Foss Maritime Company must be heard in a state circuit court.  

The Transportation Cabinet sued seven current or former employees for their part in the 2012 crash of the Delta Mariner, into the Eggners Ferry Bridge on Kentucky Lake.  An entire span of the bridge was demolished and had to be replaced.  The state is seeking to recover more than $7 million in damages. 

The Transportation Cabinet filed suit against Foss Maritime, the owner of the cargo vessel, in Marshall Circuit Court and requested a jury trial.  Seattle-based Foss Maritime got the case removed to federal court.  But in a ruling this week, U.S. District Judge Thomas Russell Judge ruled that "state courts remain competent to  hear maritime causes of action as long as the defendant is a person and not a vessel."  The decision leaves open the possibility of a jury trial.

Foss Maritime maintains it is not responsible for causing the collapse because some of the bridge's navigation lights were not working.  The Cabinet’s lawsuit claims the crew ignored a series of warnings from the U.S. Coast Guard about the malfunction.

9:58 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Owensboro Eyes Stricter Smoking Ban

A western Kentucky city is considering a proposal to make a ban on smoking even stricter.

Owensboro Mayor Ron Payne told the Messenger-Inquirer that the proposal would ban smoking in all public places, including parks, outdoor dining areas and properties owned by the city.

The city is already under a smoking ban approved in 2006 by Daviess Fiscal Court, which banned smoking in buildings open to those under age 18.

Payne says he has unanimous support from the City Commission for the proposal, which will be considered in August.

9:42 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Cabela's is Hiring for Bowling Green Store

National outdoor retailer Cabela’s is looking to hire 90 full-time and part-time employees for its Bowling Green store that is scheduled to open in the fall. 

“Customers don’t visit Cabela’s just to make a purchase, they come to learn about the outdoors and our products,” said Reginal Wheeler, general manager of the new store. “We are excited to build a staff of passionate and knowledgeable outdoor enthusiasts who will serve and educate our customers.”

Applications are being accepted online at  Interviews will take place July 13-17 at the Holiday Inn-University Plaza. 

The 42,000-square-foot store is being constructed off I-65 at the intersection of Scottsville Road and Ken Bale Boulevard.

The Bowling Green store will be Cabela’s second Kentucky location.  An 88,000-square-foot store opened in Louisville in 2013.

9:16 am
Wed July 2, 2014

WKU Board of Regents to Vote Thursday on Health Services Privatization

Graves Cilbert Clinic would take over operations of WKU Health Services no later than Aug. 1 under a plan to be voted on Thursday by the WKU Board of Regents.
Credit WKU

Members of the WKU Board of Regents will vote Thursday morning on a contract with Graves-Gilbert Clinic to run the school's Health Services.

WKU announced earlier this year it was seeking to privatize the campus facility that serves students, faculty, and staff. The university estimates such a move would cut nearly $1.1 million from the 2014-15 operating budget.

Under the agreement to be voted on Thursday, GGC would use about 47 percent of the facility, with WKU continuing to utilize the remainder of the building.

The special called meeting of the WKU Board of Regents begins at 10 a.m. Thursday, in the Cornelius A. Martin Regents Room on campus.

In a campus-wide email sent earlier this week by WKU Health Services, it was announced that the three doctors and one nurse practitioner on staff would not be retained by GGC.

The last day those employees will see patients is July 24.

Will is thrilled to be reporting and delivering the news for KUNR. An East Coast transplant, he's worked at NPR stations in Philadelphia, New York and most recently Connecticut. He's also interned at the NPR West Headquarters in Los Angeles where he learned from some of the network's best correspondents. Before joining the public radio airwaves, he studied English at a small liberal arts college and covered arts and culture for an alternative news weekly in Philadelphia.

He's particularly drawn to education, government and environmental reporting, but will jump on any story that gets him out into the field with a mic in hand. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, fish tacos and great American poetry.

Wayne Yoshioka is an award-winning journalist who has worked in television, print and radio in Hawaii.  He also has been on both sides of politics as a state departmental appointee and political/government reporter.   He covered Hurricane Iwa (1982) as a TV reporter; was the State Department of Defense/Civil Defense spokesperson for Hurricane Iniki (1992); and, commanded a public affairs detachment in Afghanistan (2006).  He has a master's degree in Communication from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and is a decorated combat veteran (Legion of Merit, Bronze Star and 22 other commendation/service medals).  He resides in Honolulu.

4:15 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Baptist Church in Kentucky Prepares to Hold First Gay Marriage Ceremony

David Bannister and Steven Carr have been together for more than six years.  They plan to get married next May at Highland Baptist Church in Louisville. 

The Courier-Journal reports the 1,200-member congregation places women in leadership and is already more liberal than most churches in the Baptist denomination.  Highland Baptist left the conservative Southern Baptist Convention about 20 years ago.  In 2012, the church ordained its first openly gay minister. 

The couple planning to wed there next spring hopes they can be legally married in light of recent rulings striking down Kentucky’s ban on same-sex marriage.

3:42 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Court Orders Indiana to Recognize 1 Gay Marriage

A federal appeals court has ordered Indiana to recognize the marriage of a lesbian couple on the death certificate that is issued when one terminally ill partner dies.

Tuesday's ruling came after the court stayed a federal judge's order setting aside Indiana's prohibition of gay marriage as unconstitutional.

Lawyers from Lambda Legal had asked the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago for the continued recognition of the marriage between Amy Sandler and Niki Quasney, who is fighting advanced ovarian cancer.

The women, who were legally married in Massachusetts last year, filed a lawsuit seeking to force Indiana to recognize their marriage. They were granted emergency recognition last month while their case proceeded, in part so Sandler's name could appear on Quasney's death certificate as her spouse.

2:47 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Christian County Sheriff's Office: Woman Threw Bag of Kittens Out Car Window

Jennifer Lynn Fowler
Credit Christian County Sheriff's Office

A Fairview woman faces a Class D Felony charge after authorities say she threw a bag of kittens out of the window of a car Monday afternoon. The Christian County Sheriff’s office says 48-year-old Jennifer Lynn Fowler was arrested Tuesday. 

An arrest warrant for Fowler says a witness saw her throw a bag out of a vehicle on Russellville Road Monday.  The witness reportedly stopped, picked up the bag and discovered the kittens. He or she then called police.   It is not known whether the cats survived.

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1:23 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Company Promises To Be More Proactive As It Unveils Plans For New Pipeline

Texas Gas Transmission is planning to build a 30 mile natural gas pipeline through Henderson County, Kentucky. Known as the Southern Indiana Market Lateral, it will extend from Texas Gas mainline facilities in southern Henderson to Posey County, Indiana, to serve the new Midwest Fertilizer and SABIC Innovative Plastics plants.

Texas Gas’ parent company, Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, recently faced significant opposition to its natural gas liquid Bluegrass Pipeline.  To avoid the opposition they faced over the Bluegrass Pipeline, Boardwalk Vice President of Operations Rick Ashy says Texas Gas will be more proactive in meeting with and providing information to the media and public officials.

“We want to make sure everyone in the community understands the purpose of the pipeline, why it’s being built, what the need is," Ashy said. "We have to live and work in these communities ourselves. We want to be good corporate neighbors.... We have a really good reputation, we feel, with the community, and the communities that our pipeline crosses, including the Mayfield area, we go right through that community. And, we just try to keep a good relationship with the property owners because at the end of the day it’s still their property.” 

Texas Gas is working on projects to transport gas from pipelines at Lebanon, Ohio, which carry gas from the Marcellus and Utica shale fields. If completed, the Southern Indiana Market Lateral will transport 166,000 MMBtu, or roughly 166 million cubic feet, per day of natural gas piped from Lebanon.

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