WKU Public Radio News

News Team

The award-winning news team at WKU Public Radio consists of Dan Modlin, Kevin Willis, Lisa Autry, and Joe Corcoran.

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Politics
2:03 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Rogers: President's Funding Request to Deal with Border Crisis "Too Much Money"

Rep. Hal Rogers

A Kentucky Congressman who leads the House Appropriations Committee says President Obama needs to lower the amount of funding he’s seeking to address the crisis along the country’s southern border.

Politico reports that Somerset Republican Hal Rogers told reporters Friday that the nearly $4 billion the President wants is “too much money.” The President made the request in response to the growing number of unaccompanied children who are trying to enter the country from central America.

Congressman Rogers said while members of the appropriations committee continue to look through the President’s plan, the $3.7 billion dollar price tag will have to come down in order to gain House support.

While he didn’t suggest a different number, Rogers said he hopes to make a counter-proposal  next week.

Politics
12:55 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Paul Remains Second in Poll of Likely New Hampshire Republican Voters

Sen. Rand Paul

The controversy that has surrounded New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie hasn’t dashed his 2016 presidential aspirations – at least not according to New Hampshire Republicans. 

Christie is first in a poll of potential GOP White House candidates at 19 percent.  Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul placed second in the WMUR Granite State Poll with 14 percent. 

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is third at 11 percent. Those numbers are based on the assumption that Mitt Romney will not run again. 

Paul, for his part,  has said he won’t make a decision on whether or not to run for president until after this year’s mid-term election.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton still leads among New Hampshire Democrats, at 59 percent. But that number has edged down slightly from April.

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Environment
3:37 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

TVA Sued by Kentucky Coal Group, Landowners Over Plans for Natural Gas Unit at Paradise Plant

The Paradise Fossil Plant in Drakesboro, Ky.
Credit Tennessee Valley Authority

A lawsuit has been filed against the Tennessee Valley Authority over its plans to shut down two coal-fired units at its plant in Muhlenberg County.

The suit brought by a group of landowners and the Kentucky Coal Association argues the TVA didn’t perform a proper environmental impact statement before it decided to close the units at the Paradise Fossil Plant, and replace them with a natural gas unit scheduled to begin operations in 2017.

Meanwhile, ground continues to be cleared for the project. Speaking to reporters in June at the Paradise plant in Drakesboro, TVA transition manager Billy Sabin said the excavation stage should be completed within three months.

“That’s expected to complete sometime around the September timeframe. When that is complete, we’ll be working on getting our permits in place, and starting actual construction the end of this year to the first of next year.”

A TVA spokesman says officials are reviewing the lawsuit and will respond appropriately. The federally-owned corporation says reducing the number of coal-burning units at its Muhlenberg County plant from three to one will cut its coal reliance at the facility by half.

Regional
11:44 am
Thu July 10, 2014

State Restricts Medical License of Hart County Physician

A Cave City physician’s medical license has been restricted following an investigation into his prescribing practices. 

The investigation into Dr. Chandra Reddy began when the local drug task force received a tip that he was prescribing prescription drugs without having patients visit his office.  The Glasgow Daily Times reports investigators also found evidence the doctor was trading prescriptions for cash and marijuana and that he was using marijuana himself. 

Reddy, who specializes in internal medicine, is no longer allowed to prescribe controlled substances until he meets a number of requirements set by the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure. 

The board previously sanctioned Reddy in 2010 following an investigation that he had inappropriate contact with two female patients during exams.

Regional
5:17 am
Thu July 10, 2014

Bowling Green UAW Leader Fired by GM

Long-time United Auto Workers Union President Eldon Renaud is out at the Bowling Green General Motors Plant. 

Spokeswoman Andrea Hales confirmed that Renaud is no longer employed at the plant.  Renaud had no comment when contacted Thursday morning by WKU Public Radio.  He served as the local UAW president since 1982 and had been a GM employee for more than 40 years. 

Renaud had been critical of Plant Manager Dave Tatman, who resigned abruptly in February.   In April, the union voted to authorize a strike if the plant didn’t resolve some safety and quality issues.  A strike never occurred.

Renaud also served as Bowling Mayor from 1996 to 2000. 

Arts & Culture
1:59 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

Harris, City of Danville To Receive Governor's Awards In The Arts

Larnelle Harris
Credit Larnelle Harris

WKU alumnus Larnelle Harris is among the winners of the 2014 Governor’s Awards in the Arts.  The honorees were announced Wednesday by the Kentucky Arts Council.  Harris has won five Grammy awards and is a member of the Gospel Hall of Fame. 

The City of Danville will be honored with the Government award for its contributions to the arts. Danville hosts the annual Great American Brass Band Festival each June.   

The awards will be presented in a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda in Frankfort in October.

Business
11:15 am
Wed July 9, 2014

Dart Container Corp Expanding Operations in Hart County

A Hart County manufacturer is announcing plans to expand its facility and add jobs. Dart Container announced today that it will invest $23 dollars to build a new 650,000 square foot warehouse in Horse Cave.

Up to 30 new jobs are expected to be created through the expansion.

Dart Container currently employs approximately 1,400 people at its Hart County operation, where it manufactures cups, bowls, plates, and other food and beverage supplies.

The Michigan-based Dart Container Corporation has been preliminarily approved for $900,000 in state tax incentives and benefits in connection with the project.

Regional
2:04 pm
Tue July 8, 2014

Fountain Temporarily Shut Down at Bowling Green's Circus Square Park

Circus Square Park near downtown Bowling Green
Credit Emil Moffatt

One way many Bowling Green families cool off in the summer is with a stop by Circus Square Park near downtown.  But the water fountain at the center of the square that often serves as a playground for small children won’t be working for the next few weeks. 

On Monday, crews discovered a hydrochloric acid leak that damaged some of the underground wiring for the pumps that operate the fountain.  City spokesperson Kim Lancaster says a contractor is currently evaluating how much damage was done.

“It looks like we have a good chance of getting the fountain at least partially operational in the next couple of weeks,” said Lancaster.  “It may not have all of the pumps running and it may not have the patterns that we like to run.”

Lancaster says an estimated timetable for a full repair is still unknown.  She says the hydrochloric acid is used to maintain a pH balance of the chlorine, much like a swimming pool.

Politics
10:06 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Rand Paul Co-Sponsors Measure to Help Scrub Certain Criminal Records

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul

Kentucky’s junior U.S. Senator is partnering with a Democratic colleague to help low-level offenders wipe their criminal records clean. Republican Rand Paul of Bowling Green and Cory Booker of New Jersey plan to introduce legislation that would encourage states to increase the age of criminal responsibility to 18.

The bi-partisan effort is being called the REDEEM Act, and would automatically expunge the records of juveniles who commit nonviolent crimes before they turn 15 and would automatically seal the records of those who commit them after.

The bill would also create a broad-based federal path for sealing criminal record for adults, with non-violent offenders able to petition courts to make their case.  

Paul is considering a run for the White House in 2016, and a new Quinnipiac University poll shows the Kentucky Senator narrowly leading his potential GOP rivals with 11 percent ofthe vote. That’s just ahead of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, who had the support of 10 percent of respondents.

Sports
9:27 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Gloves Used by Muhammad Ali in Famous Bout to Be Auctioned Off

The boxing gloves worn by Muhammad Ali in one of his most famous fights are being sold at auction. The Louisville native—then known as Cassius Clay—wore the gloves in 1971 during the first of his three fights against Joe Frazier.

The gloves will be up for bidding July 31 at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland. When the gloves were auctioned in 2012, they  sold for nearly $386,000.

Ali used the gloves in what was called the “Fight of the Century.” Ali and Frazier were both undefeated heading into the event at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Frazier knocked Ali down and won a 15-round decision.

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