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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Regional
1:14 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Indiana Student Among the Dead in Malaysian Plane Crash

Karlijn Keijzer
Credit Indiana University

A graduate student from Indiana University is among the victims who died Thursday when a Malaysia Airlines jetliner was shot down by a missile in Ukraine. 

Karlijn Keizer was pursuing her doctorate in chemistry at Indiana University in Bloomington.  The 25-year-old student from the Netherlands was also a decorated member of the women’s rowing team at I-U during the 2011 season. 

"On behalf of the entire Indiana University community, I want to express my deepest sympathies to Karlijn's family and friends over her tragic death," Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie said in a written statement. "Karlijn was an outstanding student and a talented athlete, and her passing is a loss to the campus and the university."

Keizer was described by school officials as a talented and diligent researcher whose projects all related to improving human health.  The last piece of research she completed before heading out to catch her flight for a summer vacation involved a promising drug candidate for treating Alzheimer’s disease.

Regional
11:12 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Report: Former Senator and Kentucky Governor Wendell Ford Battling Lung Cancer

Wendell H. Ford

Wendell Ford, who represented Kentucky in the U.S. Senate for more than two decades following a term as governor, has announced he’s been diagnosed with lung cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy treatments in his hometown of Owensboro.

The Messenger-Inquirer reports Ford’s son, Steve delivered a press release to the newspaper’s office Friday morning.  In the statement, the 89-year-old says doctors recently diagnosed a malignant tumor in one lung. He says that malignancy has started spreading.

Ford says he is maintaining a “very positive outlook” and has “complete faith in my doctors”.

He says his scheduled public appearances have been put on hold indefinitely.

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Regional
8:39 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Gas Line Rupture Forces Evacuations on WKU's Campus

Updated at 9:48 a.m.: Atmos Energy has sealed off a leak in a two-inch gas line, according to university spokesman Bob Skipper.  Evacuations have been lifted.

Original post:

A WKU Alert says a gas line has been hit at College Heights Boulevard near Parking Structure 1. Emergency personnel are on the scene at this hour and as a precaution Rodes-Harlin, McCormack, Gilbert and Schneider Halls have been evacuated along with Parking Structure 1.

WKU and emergency officials are telling people to avoid the area until the scene is cleared.

Regional
2:38 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Latest NBC News-Marist Poll Gives Paul Narrow Edge Among GOP Hopefuls in New Hampshire, Tie in Iowa

Credit WKU Public Radio

A new NBC News-Marist poll puts Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul at the top of the list of 2016 Republican White House hopefuls in both Iowa and New Hampshire. 

Paul has a one percentage point lead (14 percent to 13 percent) over New Jersey governor Chris Christie in the Granite State. In a hypothetical general-election match up with Hillary Clinton, Paul trails the former Secretary of State by three points, 46-43 in New Hampshire. 

Meantime, in Iowa, Paul is tied with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush with 12 percent of support from likely GOP voters there.

Paul hasn't formally declared his intention to run for president in 2016.

Regional
12:08 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Campbellsville University Board of Trustees Opts For More Control Of Appointees

The Board of Trustees for Campbellsville University says it is moving forward with a plan to phase out of its existing relationship with the Kentucky Baptist Convention over the next four years. 

The change will likely mean the loss of nearly $1 million dollars in funding per year.  The Board of Trustees and the university wanted more control in the trustee selection process.  Earlier this week, it was reported that part of the new plan was to have the ability to appoint a non-Baptist trustee. 

But in a letter co-signed by board chairman Joseph Owens, the board said trustees would remain 100 percent Baptist. The letter also stressed Campbellsville University will remain a “strongly Christian, evangelical, Baptist-connected institution”. 

“We are terribly saddened to learn that Campbellsville has adopted bylaws inconsistent with their Covenant Agreement with the churches of the Kentucky Baptist Convention,” said Chip Hutcheson, president of the KBC in a written statement. “The statement released by Campbellsville brings to mind the husband who wants to divorce his wife but still offers to live with her. The university has taken steps to remove itself from a covenant relationship yet still wants to claim it is ‘committed’ to the family."

A meeting of Kentucky Baptist Convention officers was previously scheduled for Thursday to discuss the latest developments.

Politics
11:23 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Marksberry Says He Won't Meet August Deadline To Appear on Ballot

Ed Marksberry

Ed Marksberry, the Owensboro contractor who had hoped to appear as an independent candidate on this November’s ballot for the Kentucky Senate race, says he will stop trying to collect signatures to that end. 

In a written statement, Marksberry says he collected only half of the 5,000 signatures needed to appear on the ballot. He says recent health issues have impeded his efforts to meet an August 12th deadline. 

Marksberry says the race between incumbent Republican Mitch McConnell and Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes lacks a progressive voice. When asked whether he’ll support Grimes, Marksberry told the Herald-Leader,  “absolutely not”.  

Politics
9:56 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Reports: Pro-McConnell Super PAC Seeing Much More Fundraising Success than Group Supporting Grimes

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes
Credit Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

A Super PAC supporting Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell is greatly out-performing a similar group that is raising money for Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes.

According to a report in the Courier-Journal, the vast majority of the contributions made to the pro-McConnell group Kentuckians for Strong Leadership come from out-of-state individuals.

That Super PAC this week reported raising nearly $424,000 during the months of May and June. None of that money came from Kentuckians. The single biggest donation came from Sam Fox of St. Louis, the CEO and chairman of a private company that acquires businesses.

Reports filed with the Federal Elections Commission show Kentuckians for Strong Leadership has raised more than $3.7 million dollars since it was formed last year, with less than 5 percent of that coming from donors with Kentucky addresses.

A Super PAC supporting Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes called We Are Kentucky raised $50,000 during the second quarter, while spending nearly $65,000 in that same time period. Since forming last year, the group has raised $343,000, a fraction of what Kentuckians for Strong Leadership has taken in to support Senator McConnell.

Education
12:07 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Major Changes Eyed by Campbellsville Regents Draw Concern From Baptist Convention

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.

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Regional
10:28 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Bowling Green Police Probe Deadly Stabbing

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.

Transportation
4:05 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Corridor Connecting Southern Indiana to Natcher Bridge in Owensboro Could be Toll Road

An Indiana transportation panel is making recommendations that could lead to the start of a new corridor linking southern Indiana with Daviess County, Kentucky, within five to ten years.  

The road will be called the Mid-State Corridor, and will run from Pike County, Indiana, to the Natcher Bridge east of Owensboro. That road was formally known as I-67, but the name was dropped because only federal officials can create a new interstate.

The Messenger-Inquirer reports the Indiana Blue Ribbon Panel on Transportation Infrastructure also believes construction should start on the proposed Interstate-69 bridge at Henderson within five years. Funding concerns are a major issue for the projects, however, with the federal Highway Trust Fund running out of money.

If a creative solution isn’t found, blue ribbon panel member Hank Menke told the paper that the Mid-State Corridor might have to be built as a toll road.

The corridor is expected to cost Indiana $444 million, with Kentucky chipping in $177 million.

The Indiana panel’s recommendations now go to Governor Mike Pence.

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