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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A new Iowa poll shows Kentucky Senator Rand Paul in the middle of the pack of possible Republican contenders for the White House in 2016. 

The Courier-Journal cites a poll by Gravis Marketing that shows former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney in front with 21 percent support.  Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush comes in second in the poll with 14 percent approval.  Next are Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee with ten and nine percent support, respectively. 

Senator Rand Paul was favored by eight percent Iowa Republicans who were surveyed.  Behind Paul were Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan, Chris Christie, and Marco Rubio. 

The poll was conducted January 5-7 and questioned 404 registered GOP voters.  The margin of error is plus or minus three percentage points. 

Senator Paul has made several trips to Iowa while exploring a run for president.  He continues visiting other early-voting states.  This week, the Bowling Green Republican visited New Hampshire.

Two Elizabethtown cancer doctors are being sued for allegedly extending chemotherapy treatments in order to make more money.

Six former patients and the estates representing two other patients are suing Doctors Yusef Deshmukh and Rafiq Rahman, accusing the two of diluting the drugs used to treat their cancers, so that the treatment period would be made longer. The Courier-Journal reports the alleged actions by the doctors between 2006 and 2014 allowed them to improperly bill Medicaid and other programs for reimbursements.

Deshmukh and Rahman are already under investigation by the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure related to the allegations.

The suit asks for unspecified damages and says the patients were made to unnecessarily retain catheters and ports inside their bodies.

The defendants have not yet filed a legal response to the suit. Meanwhile, the doctors accused in the suit are allowed to continue their practice, and their clinic remains open.

Although the numbers are expected to change slightly over the next few months, the board agreed to cut 50 jobs and slice teachers' pay by 9.8%.

According to WBKO-TV, an estimated 500 people jammed into Muhlenberg County High School's auditorium Monday night, mostly teachers and their families opposed to the cuts. Both in their comments and on printed signs, members of the public said the cuts would lead to increased class sizes within the district and impact learning.

Eighteen year old freshman Collin Craig filed a report with Bowling Green city police claiming he was assaulted and forced to drink alcohol during several different hazing incidents.

Bowling Green police spokesman Ronnie Ward confirmed to the Daily News that they are investigating the allegations with WKU's cooperation. WKU is conducting an investigation of its own. The university has a hazing policy in place which expressly prohibits it in all forms.

Craig, who is no longer a student at WKU, was a biology major with plans to attend medical school.

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WKU is removing the “interim” label from the title of its Kentucky Museum Director.

Brent Bjorkman hasbeen named the museum’s director after serving as the interim leader since August. The Folk Studies Professor also serves as Director of the Kentucky Folklife Program.

In announcing the decision, WKU Provost Gordon Emslie said in a statement that Bjorkman displayed the ability to lead the Kentucky Museum towards its goal of achieving accreditation with the American Alliance of Museums.

The Kentucky Museum houses permanent and traveling art exhibits as well as historical documents from across the region.

Democrats and Republicans have selected candidates who will campaign to fill a vacant Kentucky state Senate seat.

Democrat Walter Blevins resigned from the position last Sunday after  being sworn-in as Rowan County’s Judge-Executive.

Voters in the 27th District will choose between Democrat Kelly Caudill and Republican Steve West when they cast ballots March 3.

Caudill is an attorney from Maysville who says his top priorities as state Senator would be boosting economic development in the district, as well as increasing spending for public education and supporting laws that fight drug abuse.

West is a Bourbon County real estate attorney and cattle farmer. If West wins, the GOP will extend its already sizable advantage in the state Senate, which currently stands at 26-11.

The 27th District Senate seat covers Bourbon, Fleming, Harrison, Lewis, Mason, Nicholas, Robertson, and Rowan counties.

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Environmental groups are going to court to argue that Kentucky and West Virginia are doing a poor job of enforcing federal clean water rules.

Kentuckians for the Commonwealth, the Sierra Club, and others say the states haven’t done enough to control pollution from surface coal mines, causing damage to nearby streams and rivers.

The groups behind the federal lawsuits say they asked the Environmental Protection Agency years ago to rescind Kentucky and West Virginia’s authority over surface coal mine discharges. But the plaintiffs say the EPA never responded to that request.

The Herald-Leader reports the lawsuits are designed to compel the federal agency to act. The suits claim Kentucky doesn’t have enough employees to adequately monitor surface mine pollution, failed to set appropriate limits on pollutants, and issued mining permits under rules that included less scrutiny of applicants.

A spokesman for the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet says his group believes they have been implementing all programs in accordance with state and federal regulations.

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WKU’s all-time leading scorer is having his basketball jersey number retired later this month.

The school announced Thursday that Courtney Lee’s #32 jersey will be retired January 22 during WKU’s game against Texas-El Paso. Lee will become just the tenth person affiliated with the WKU men’s basketballteam to have his jersey retired, joining names such as coach E.A. Diddle, and players Jim McDaniels, Clem Haskins, and Darel Carrier.

Lee played at WKU from 2004-to-2008, scoring 2,238 career points—equaling McDaniels for the most points all time. The Indianapolis native led the Hilltoppers to an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance and 29-win season his senior year, while averaging over 20 points a game.

Lee was taken in the first round of the 2008 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic. He has played for five different teams, and currently averages 11 points a game for the Memphis Grizzlies.

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Republicans in the Kentucky House have chosen to stay with Representative Jeff Hoover of Jamestown as their leader, despite a challenge from Representative Adam Koenig of Erlanger.  Hoover, the Republican Floor Leader, was elected Tuesday to an eighth consecutive term.

Also selected during caucus elections in Frankfort was Representative Jim DeCesare, R-Bowling Green, as House Republican Whip.  Rep. DeCesare replaces Rep. John ‘Bam’ Carney, R-Campbellsville, who had announced at the end of December that he would not seek another term as Whip.

A National Transportation Safety Board investigator believes the 7-year-old girl who survived a Friday night plane crash in Kentucky could provide clues as to what caused the incident.

Sailor Gutzler was aboard the small plane that crashed in Lyon County after taking off from Tallahassee, Florida. Her parents, sister, and a cousin died in the accident.

Despite being bloodied and suffering a broken wrist,  Sailor pulled herself from the wreckage and walked a mile in the dark in near-freezing temperatures until she found the nearest home. N.T.S.B investigator Heidi Moats says it’s rare for someone to survive a small plane crash, and that Sailor could provide clues as to what brought the plane down before it got to its destination in Illinois.

The plane’s remains have been removed from the crash site so that the N.T.S.B. can inspect them.

The Courier-Journal reports that the agency says it will issue a preliminary report on the crash  by the middle of next week.

Sailor was treated at a hospital and released to the care of a relative over the weekend.

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