Kevin Willis

News Director

Kevin is the News Director at WKU Public Radio.  He has been with the station since 1999, and was previously the Assistant News Director, and also served as local host of Morning Edition.  He is a broadcast journalism graduate of WKU, and has won numerous awards for his reporting and feature production.  Kevin grew up in Radcliff, Kentucky and currently lives in Glasgow.

Ways To Connect

Thursday’s recanvass of two Kentucky primary election races has not changed the election night outcome.

Clerks in all 120 counties double-checked their totals from the GOP primaries for governor and agriculture commissioner, and reported those totals to the state board of elections.

Following the recanvass, Matt Bevin remains the victor over James Comer in the gubernatorial contest, and Ryan Quarles maintained his more than 1,400 vote margin of victory in the agriculture commissioner’s race.

James Comer’s campaign manager issued a statement Thursday afternoon saying Comer was on vacation with his family in Florida and would make an announcement Friday concerning the next steps he’ll take regarding the governor’s race.

Comer could ask for a recount—something that would require a lawsuit and would be paid for by the candidate.

Office of Lt. Gov.

Kentucky’s highest female office-holder is hoping more women will become political candidates.

Lieutenant Governor Crit Luallen, speaking to the Bowling Green Noon Rotary Club Wednesday,  said a recent study showing Kentucky near the bottom of the nation in the number of women office holders is proof there’s a problem.

The report from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research ranks Kentucky 46th in the nation when it comes to the number of females holding elected office.

“I think women have to work harder to prove themselves. I think often they are considered not to have the strength that a man has, or the power that a man has. And the truth is women are doing everyday an incredibly courageous job of balancing complicated lives and careers.”

Despite her concerns, Luallen said she believes an increasing number of younger women in Kentucky are beginning to believe they can succeed at all aspects of running for office.

“They can raise money successfully, they can convince people to support them—it’s a very, very achievable goal to run for office as a woman.”

Flickr

The Warren County Clerk predicts her office will complete Thursday’s recanvass in about one hour.

Lynette Yates doesn’t believe there will be great changes to the vote totals in the Republican primaries for governor and agriculture commissioner. She says her office will first scan electronic cards that compiled totals from each voting machine in the county.

“Then we have tapes coming out of each of those voting machines that back up those numbers. So what we will do tomorrow is get all of those tapes out of all of our precincts, and recalculate everything, and go over all the numbers.”

After the recanvass, each county clerks office will fax their updated numbers to the state board of elections.

“I don’t think that there will be a lot of change,” Yates said. “There shouldn’t be—but sometimes calculations with the machines may not have scanned correctly, or something like that. That would be very obscure for something like that to have happened.

James Comer asked for a recanvass of the GOP gubernatorial primary that he lost to Matt Bevin by 83 votes. The other race being recanvassed tomorrow is the Republican Agriculture Commissioner primary, which Ryan Quarles won by a little more than 1,400 votes over Richard Heath.

Six candidates are under consideration to be the next Glasgow Police Chief.

The candidates were selected by a search committee from a pool of 20 applications. Glasgow Mayor Dick Doty said in a news release that background checks will be conducted, and the committee will contact the candidates’ references.

If no problems arise, the six candidates will be brought in for interviews.

The candidate pool contains both in-state and out-of-state candidates. Doty is asking Glasgow residents to submit written input on the qualities they would like to see in the next police chief by the close of business on Friday, May 29.

WKU

WKU and EKU have agreed to a four-year men’s basketball series beginning this December.

The teams will alternate home games over the four years, with the first game next season at E.A. Diddle Arena in Bowling Green.

The Hilltoppers and Colonels have played 154 times, dating back to the 1914-15 season.

The schools were Ohio Valley Conference rivals for 34 years, starting in 1948.

A drug that can reverse the effects of a heroin overdose will soon be available without a prescription in Kentucky.

The state Board of Pharmacy’s emergency regulation went into effect last week to allow pharmacists to dispense naloxone, a drug that’s already used in hospital emergency rooms and by law enforcement agencies.

Van Ingram, head of the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy, says the hope is to save people who can then be rehabilitated.

“Substance abuse treatment is the end-goal for all individuals who are addicted, but we can’t get them to substance abuse treatment if they aren’t alive.”

Naloxone can be administered by a needle injection, through an auto-injector, and through a intranasal device.

A bill passed this year by state lawmakers allows pharmacists to establish guidelines on how to prescribe the drug.

Kevin Willis

A group of WKU students is spending the next two weeks in the Great Plains tracking severe storms and dangerous weather patterns.

WKU Meteorology Professor Josh Durkee is taking eight students to a part of the country that is often hit by tornados and other storms this time of the year. He says the class is an opportunity for participants to collect and analyze weather data that are used to predict where storms will next appear.

“The most common phrase I hear students say is, ‘I learned more in two weeks that I have in two years.’ That’s because it takes a lot of the stuff we have been learning about in the classroom and they get to see it in real-time, and they get to put their hands on it.”

Durkee says the students taking his annual Field Methods in Weather Analysis and Forecasting course are never in danger and stay at least five miles away from the storms they are tracking. The class travels throughout the Midwest and Great Plains regions to learn more about how to predict how and when severe weather will impact the area.

Metcalfe County native and graduating senior Tori Hampton has been looking forward to taking the class for years. She says experiencing a tornado at the age of five fueled a passion to learn more about storms.

The head of Kentucky’s Department of Veterans Affairs is hoping to hear soon on whether Bowling Green will be the site of a 90-bed long-term care facility for veterans.

Commissioner Heather French Henry says the state has submitted to the federal government a needs assessment for veterans in the southern Kentucky region.

Speaking after an address to the Bowling Green Noon Rotary Club Wednesday, Henry said  if the federal VA  gives its approval, she would then lobby state lawmakers to support the project in the next two-year budget.

“There is a grant matching fund process that takes place, so if they see the need and they give us a favorable outcome to the needs assessment that we’ve given, we’ll go to our state legislature and we will try to get the match for the money we’ve asked for.

Commissioner Henry says she’s hopeful the state will get the go-ahead soon.

“I have not gotten an official response, though they have called several times and we’ve been able to answer any questions they have. So hopefully, to me, that shows they have interest.”

Office of the Attorney General

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway is suing Marathon Petroleum in federal court for allegedly inflating gas prices in parts of the state.

Conway accuses the company of engaging in anti-competitive practices that have led to higher gas prices in parts of the state. The suit alleges that Marathon’s acquisition of Ashland Oil in 1998 allowed the company to keep gas prices 12 to 20 cents per gallon higher on average, with the Louisville and northern Kentucky regions impacted the most.

According to Conway, per-gallon prices in Louisville are 20 to 30 cents higher than the rest of the commonwealth.

The Kentucky Attorney General in 2011 took the company to court for allegedly illegally inflating wholesale prices following flooding in parts of the state.

The company denied the charges and said its prices were based solely on market conditions.

Conway is a Democratic candidate for Kentucky governor, and is considered the heavy favorite to win his party's nomination next week.

An 11-year-old Hardin County girl and her father are dead following what police are calling a murder-suicide.

Kentucky State Police says the girl died at the hands of her father, 49-year-old John Jonas. Both were found dead outside their home in Vine Grove.

Hardin County Schools spokesman John Wright says grief counselors will be available for students and staff at Vine Grove Elementary, where the girl was a fifth-grade student.

“The most important part is that we’re letting students express themselves. If they need to visit with a counselor, or teacher, or friend, we’re allowing them to do that today.”

A police investigation into the deaths is ongoing. Autopsies are scheduled today in Louisville.

The name of the girl who was killed has not been officially released by the school or police.

Pages