The Tennessee Valley Authority is encouraging many of its employees to retire early or resign.
The nation's largest public utility outlined its plan on Wednesday to reduce its workforce and cut spending so that it can save $500 million a year in operating costs and keep rates more in line with neighboring utilities.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports severance packages are being offered to all non-nuclear employees who have been with the company for at least a year.
TVA officials say they hope the offer helps the utility limit or avoid major layoffs later this year when the utility plans to close more coal plants and limit other operations.
TVA supplies power to about 9 million people in Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.
The Mountain Parkway in Eastern Kentucky will expand to four lanes in the coming years under a proposal from Governor Steve Beshear.
Beshear's proposal will be paid for with nearly $600 million in state and federal highway funding, and over $150 million in funds recovered by toll revenues.
“The Kentucky Highway Plan that I will be recommending to the General Assembly will include a series of construction projects by which the Mountain Parkway will be four-laned, lengthened and thoroughly modernized by the year 2020," the Governor said.
House and Senate leadership eagerly support the plan, which will need to be approved by the General Assembly.
Construction on the project’s first phase, which includes Magoffin and Morgan Counties, is slated to begin later this year.
A federal judge in Louisville is weighing the fate of Kentucky's ban on same sex marriages as similar laws around the country have been overturned.
Two cases brought to force the state to recognize same sex marriages have been fully briefed and submitted to U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II. Among the filings were decisions by federal judges in Oklahoma and Utah striking down laws in those states.
Heyburn isn't bound by decisions in other federal districts. Attorneys for the two couples suing are hoping those rulings will come into play.
Judges in Oklahoma, New Mexico, Ohio and Utah have all ruled in favor of same-sex marriage. Gay marriages in Utah have been put on hold pending a decision from the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Two Hodgenville city officials have pleaded not guilty to charges of theft and abusing public trust. The News-Enterprise reports Hodenville mayor Terry L. Cruse and city clerk Madonna Hornback entered the pleas Tuesday in Larue District Court.
An indictment issued last month by a grand jury accuses both of using a city-issued fuel credit card to make personal purchases and taking money from the city.
Cruse and Hornback have denied the charges.
Larue County prosecutor Terry Geoghegan said the indictment stems from a lengthy investigation spurred by "citizen complaints." Judge Charles Simms III set a trial date for June 9.
Former Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner and University of Kentucky basketball star Richie Farmer has been sentenced to 27 months in prison.
Farmer previously pleaded guilty to corruption charges for misappropriating government resources while in office. The sentence also requires Farmer to pay over $120,000 in restitution for abusing his power. Farmer’s attorney Guthrie True says he's disappointed in the ruling. He'd sought to have Farmer serve only 21 months.
“All that Richie’s done and accomplished in life is not wiped out by this, and I think people ought to remember that,” said True. “I mean, he served our state well in many respects as the commissioner of agriculture and, you know, he certainly served a lot of interests that are important to a lot of us, that give pride to our state, our basketball team, our university. And he’s accomplished a lot in life and he will accomplish more in life.”
Farmer is ordered to report to prison on March 18. After his sentence is served, he will be placed on one year’s probation. He expressed contrition as he left the courtroom.
“Obviously disappointed, but, you know, certainly I wanna say to the people of the state how sorry that I am and how much they’ve meant to me and thank them for all the understanding and, you know, you make bad decisions, poor judgments, and, you know, you own up to those mistakes and you move on,” said Farmer. And that’s what I would hope that people of the state would be willing to do.”
Farmer was a member of the UK men’s basketball team’s roster of star players known as “The Unforgettables.”
A jury has found a former central Kentucky teacher guilty on 19 of 29 charges involving a student.
The News-Enterprise reports 47-year-old Anthony Durrant, who used to teacher at J.T. Alton Middle School in Vine Grove, did not convey any emotion Monday night as the verdict was read.
He was found guilty of using a minor in a sexual performance, using electronic means to induce a minor to engage in sexual or other prohibited activities and possession of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor. Jurors acquitted him of 10 other counts including sex abuse.
According to the newspaper, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for the crimes.
Prosecutor Teresa Logsdon said the case shows that prison sentences await those convicted of crimes against children.
Governor Beshear has announced a new contract to remake a major interchange along the Interstate-69 corridor in Hopkins County.
The latest phase of the project involves creating a cloverleaf interchange connecting I-69 with the Breathitt-Pennyrile parkway, south of Madisonville.
The $29 million contract was awarded to the Nashville-based Rogers Group, Inc., and Louisville-based Qk4 Inc., with a completion date set for May of 2015. Kentucky’s stretch of I-69 will eventually run north to south from Henderson to Fulton, in far western Kentucky.
Political and business leaders hope upgrading the existing roadway will boost jobs and economic activity along the I-69 corridor.
Completing the project will mean major upgrades to parts of the Pennyrile, Western Kentucky, and Purchase Parkways, which were not built to handle traffic merging into 70-mile-per hour roadways.
Kentucky investigators are looking into whether a recent murder in Pennsylvania could be connected with the May, 2013, murder of a Bardstown police officer.
The Courier-Journal reports a Kentucky State Police detective working the murder case of officer Jason Ellis has been in contact with Pennsylvania State Police regarding the shooting death of a man along I-81 in southern Pennsylvania.
Twenty-eight-year-old Timothy Davidson called 9-1-1 early Saturday and said someone in a pickup truck was shooting at him. Police say Davidson was forced into a median and disabled his vehicle before being shot to death.
Bardstown police officer Jason Ellis was gunned down May 25 after he got out of his police cruiser to move debris off a Bluegrass Parkway exit in Nelson County. Investigators have described that shooting as an ambush.
A Kentucky State Police spokesman says the two cases are being compared for any similarities. Over $200,000 in reward money has been offered for information into the Ellis murder.
Legislation that requires training for physicians so they can better spot signs of child abuse is pending in Frankfort. The bill was given a preliminary hearing Thursday at the state capital.
A few years ago, the state legislature required nurses, emergency room workers, and social workers to undergo similar training. Since not all physicians treat children, doctors were left out of the law. Now, Child Abuse Pediatrician Melissa Currie says doctors who do take care of kids should participate in the one hour training.
“We have unfortunately identified a number of cases, as many as half of the cases of physical abuse fatalities in children in this state of Kentucky involve those children having been seen by physicians within a short period of time prior to their death and having the early warning signs of abuse missed by those physicians,” said Currie.