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
5:00 am
Sat August 10, 2013

Interstate 65 Work In Hardin County Expected To Create Delays

Contract crews will begin repairs along concrete sections of Northbound Interstate 65 in Hardin County on Sunday night, requiring closure of two lanes. 

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet issued an advisory stating that only one lane will be available for northbound travel from mile point 101 (just south of KY 313/Joe Prather Highway) to mile point 103 (Rolling Fork River Bridge).

Work will take place from Sunday night through Thursday morning.  Lengthy delays are possible during this time, especially mid and late day.  Motorists should watch for stopped and slow moving traffic ahead.  Those who seek an alternate route may wish to use the following:

  • Exit 93 (Bluegrass Parkway), to exit 10 (KY 52  – Boston), to US 62, to KY 61 and rejoin I-65 in Lebanon Junction at the 105 interchange.

Work will not take place and all lanes will be open from Thursday afternoon through Sunday afternoon to better accommodate higher traffic volumes.

Northbound work will take approximately two weeks to complete, depending on weather conditions.  Once northbound work is complete, contract crews will switch repair operations to southbound lanes. 

Economy
4:56 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Budget Outlooks Improving in Kentucky and Tennessee

The budget outlooks in both Kentucky and Tennessee are healthier than they were this time last year. Kentucky Budget Director Jane Driskell announced Friday that the state’s general fund receipts for the first month of the fiscal year were up two-percent over July of last year.

Tennessee, meanwhile, has ended its budget year with a $42 million budget surplus, fueled partly by a nine-percent increase in the Volunteer State’s corporate tax receipts. Governor Bill Haslam’s office hasn’t said yet what he plans to do with the extra money.

Sports
10:54 am
Fri August 9, 2013

WKU Football to Play at Illinois in 2017

The WKU football team will play at Illinois in 2014 and 2017.
Credit WKU Athletics

WKU is adding another major-conference opponent to its football schedule. Athletic Director Todd Stewart says the Hilltoppers will travel to the University of Illinois in 2017.

WKU already has a game at Illinois scheduled for 2014.

Stewart says playing road games against larger-conference foes is a major money-generator for the athletic program.

"It's still anywhere from a $800,000 to $1 million payday, and we need that money. But we'd like to have that game a little more regional, so that our fans can go to it."

Champaign, Illinois is a five hour drive from Bowling Green. WKU will receive $875,000 for next year's game vs. the Illini.

Stewart recently spoke to WKU Public Radio about his efforts to schedule fewer so-called "money games," but to have those revenue-generating contests be closer to southern Kentucky.

WKU plays the Tennessee Volunteers in Knoxville this season. UT is paying WKU $800,000 for that game Sept. 7.

You can see WKU's 2013-14 football schedule here.

Regional
8:39 am
Fri August 9, 2013

All Lanes of I-65 North at Horse Cave Now Open

Update at 9:12 a.m.:

All lanes of I-65 North in the Horse Cave area have been reopened following a single vehicle crash Friday morning.

Original post:

The Kentucky Department of Highways has issued a traffic advisory Thursday morning impacting motorists heading north on I-65:

A single vehicle crash on I-65 NB at MP 58 (just north of the KY 218 Horse Cave Exit) has the right lane closed at this time. This location is very close to the end of the construction zone Northbound. The lane closure will be in effect for approximately 2 to 3 hours while the passenger car is removed. No injuries were reported in association with this crash.

Motorists are encouraged to slow down and be cautious when traveling through this area of I-65.

Regional
2:50 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Vehicle Fire Leads to Closure of Northbound Natcher Lanes at Mile Point 10

Update at 4:11 p.m.:

All lanes of the Natcher Parkway are now clear following an afternoon vehicle fire at mile point 10.

Update at 3:13 p.m.:

The Northbound lanes of the Natcher Parkway are still blocked due to this vehicle fire. It is anticipated that it will take an additional 1 to 2 hours to re-open the lanes. Northbound traffic is being detoured onto US-231 toward Morgantown in the meanwhile.

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Regional
12:33 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Flash Flood Warning Impacts Northern, Middle Tennessee

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood warning for parts of our Tennessee listening area. The new warning is in effect until 3:00 p.m. Thursday, and includes the counties of Davidson, northern Wilson, south-central Robertson, southern Sumner, and Trousdale.

Rainfall of three to seven inches has already fallen in the impacted areas, with another one to three inches possible through the afternoon. However, the National Weather Service says the waters appear to be receding in most of the areas hit the hardest Thursday morning.

A spokesman for the Nashville Fire Department told The Tennessean that they’ve responded to about 35 rescue calls from people caught in the  high waters.

Environment
10:19 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Bluegrass Pipeline Developer Holding Open-House Meeting Thursday in Elizabethtown

A developer behind a proposed pipeline that would run through parts of Kentucky is holding an open-house meeting  in Hardin County Thursday night to explain their plans. Williams, a construction company based in Tulsa, OK., is  hosting the meeting at Pritchard Community Center in Elizabethtown from 5-7:30 p.m.

The Bluegrass Pipeline would carry natural gas liquids from sources in the northeast through northern Kentucky, and into several counties in our listening area, including Hardin, Nelson, Meade, Larue, and Breckinridge.

Pipeline opponents delivered a petition to Governor Beshear’s office Wednesday detailing their concerns about possible environmental damage and property rights concerns related to the project.

Governor Beshear has declined to add the pipeline issue to the agenda of a special legislative session that begins Aug. 19 in Frankfort. Beshear says he wants the sole item on the agenda to be legislative redistricting.

Economy
5:48 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Rand Paul: U.S. Should Use Foreign Aid Money to Help Economically Distressed Areas

Kentucky’s junior U.S. Senator says he’s developing a “Republican alternative” to a Detroit bailout plan.

Speaking on the Glenn Beck radio show, Senator Paul said he is talking with his staff about ways to help economically depressed areas of the country, like Detroit. The Bowling Green Republican said he would like to look at ways to “have some tax forbearance, reduce some taxes, encourage businesses, encourage people to come in and take abandoned property.”

Politico reports Paul is opposed to the idea of borrowing money to bail out the city, but he is suggesting the government should redirect foreign aid sent to countries like Egypt, and instead use it on infrastructure projects in the U.S.

A national poll conducted by Quinnipiac University shows that a majority Democrats believe the federal government should bail out Detroit, but an even larger majority of Americans oppose such a move.

Health
2:35 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Texting While Driving in Kentucky? You Could Lose Points on Your License

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear has announced new tools aimed at enforcing the state's "no texting" law.

A 2010 law made texting while driving punishable by a fine. Speaking in Louisville Wednesday, Beshear said that hasn't been enough of a deterrent. Starting in a few months, the Transportation Cabinet will take three points off the licenses of drivers caught while texting behind the wheel.

The new three-point texting penalty was announced as transportation leaders and emergency responders gathered for an annual meeting. The state can suspend the licenses of drives who incur 12 penalty points within a two-year period.

For drivers under 18, the threshold is seven points.

According to the Governor's office, more than 5,300 crashes in Kentucky last year were caused by driver distraction.

Politics
12:02 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

James Comer: Stressing Social Issues Not the Key to Election Success for the GOP

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer

WKU Public Radio's interview with Agriculture Commissioner James Comer

Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner says Republicans need to focus on the economy in order to win statewide office, as opposed to stressing social issues.

In an interview at WKU Public Radio Wednesday, James Comer said the GOP has alienated a lot of key voting groups by making hot-button social topics the cornerstone of their campaigns.

“I’m proud to be a social conservative, but I’m not going to run any campaign in the future—regardless of what I run for—specifically on social issues. That has driven off young voters, and that has driven off female voters.”

Comer’s comments echo much of what Kentucky U.S. Senator Rand Paul has said recently about the future of the GOP, and the party’s need to become more attractive to groups of voters that will determine Republicans’ future electoral prospects.

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