6:13 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Beshear Cuts Kentucky Budget to Balance $90.9-Million Shortfall

Gov. Steve Beshear

Gov. Steve Beshear issued a pair of executive orders this week reducing state spending levels to plug a $90.9-million hole in Kentucky's budget.

The Office of the State Budget Director announced the shortfall last week, which is due largely to an unexpected $63-million decline in income related to capital gains. 

Beshear's cuts cover the $90.9-million gap.

In a statement released Wednesday night, Beshear said the state was "somewhat limited" in its approach to filling the budget hole.

“But as in previous reductions, two goals guided our decisions—to take steps to make government as efficient and as lean as possible, and to protect as best we can the core services that offer help and hope to our people and represent important long-term investments in Kentucky’s future: education, health care and public safety," Beshear said in the released statement.

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5:12 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Hopes High After Airport Receives State Funding To Attract Commercial Airline

Credit Emil Moffatt

Disappointment from earlier this year has been turned inside-out for the Bowling Green-Warren County Regional Airport. 

In late April, Governor Steve Beshear vetoed $750,000 dollars from this year’s budget that would have gone to help lure a commercial airline to Bowling Green for the first time in decades.  But airport general manager Rob Barnett learned Thursday morning, Kentucky will be able to invest that $750,000 dollars in July 2015 in the second year of the biennium.

“We now have a total incentive package of two million dollars to offer airlines that might be interested in servicing Bowling Green, Kentucky,” said Barnett.

Barnett says a recent study showed over 700,000 airline tickets were purchased by residents in Warren and nine surrounding counties over the past year. He says he’ll continue dialogue with potential airline partners over the next year. Barnett says he never lost confidence that the airport would receive the state funding, even after the veto in the spring.

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4:49 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Bowling Green Company Signs on as Sponsor of Motorsports Park

A rendering of the Holley Control Tower and Event Center sits in front of the stage at the NCM Motorsports Park in Bowling Green on Thursday, July 17, 2014.
Credit Abbey Oldham

The National Corvette Museum has landed another major sponsor for its Motorsports Park that will open in September. 

Holley Performance Products will sponsor a 12,600-square-foot control tower and event center. 

"It's a two-story building.  The bottom floor consists of classrooms, a lobby, and a retail area," said Motorsports Park General Manager Mitch Wright.  "The second floor will be the race control area, and in addition to that, there will be a 2,100-square-foot viewing deck up there."

Holley is the second major company to sign on as a sponsor of the park, joining Michelin Tires. 

Construction is about a week ahead of schedule for the track’s grand opening on Labor Day weekend. 

The Motorsports Park features a three-mile road course on nearly 200 acres just across I-65 from the Corvette Museum.

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.

1:43 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Date Set for Bowling Green's Annual Balloons, Tunes, and BBQ

U.S. Bank is the title sponsor of the 24th annual Balloons, Tunes, and BBQ festival in Bowling Green.
Credit Lisa Autry

A summer tradition returns to Bowling Green September 4-7.  It’s the 24th annual Balloons, Tunes, and BBQ Festival that raises money for charity. 

Organizers held a kickoff celebration Thursday at the Bowling Green-Warren County Regional Airport. 

All proceeds from the event will benefit United Way of Southern Kentucky, which puts the money back into the community.

"It literally goes to help people from cradle to grave, whether it's Wee Care Nursery that provides affordable daycare so that a mom can go to school or work or all the way up to Hospice at the end stages of your life," said United Way Marketing and Communications Director Mandy Hicks.  "This is a great opportunity to have some fun and give back."

The event, which features hot air balloons, music,  food, rides, and competitions raised more than $60,000 last year. 

This year’s concert  lineup includes Nashville recording artists David Nail, Jana Kramer, and The Farm.

7:47 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Ellis Park To Boost Purses

Kentucky horse racing authorities have approved a plan for Ellis Park to increase the purses for many of its thoroughbred races starting in August, helping make it more competitive with other tracks.

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted Wednesday to authorize the Henderson racetrack to use $300,000 from the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund.

Ellis Park initially hoped to use half of that money to help fund a pair of new stakes races for two year olds this summer. The track's Director of Operations, Bob Jackson, said that wouldn't be possible this year.

The Commission authorized the track to use $200,000 to bolster purse money for Kentucky-bred horses competing in maiden and allowance races this summer. The Commission also agreed to allow Ellis Park to hold the remaining $100,000 until next year.

6:56 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Letcher County Farmer's Market Designated USDA “Summer Feeding” Site, Becoming First in State

An Eastern Kentucky farmer’s market has become the first in the state to be  designated a “Summer Feeding Site” by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

As part of a joint effort led by the Community Farm Alliance, the program will provide farm-to-table meals free of charge to children under the age of 18  during summer break.

The program also aims to shore up business among local farmers by providing them with a steady source of income, and to improve community health.

According to U.S. Census data, about a quarter of Letcher County’s 23,600 residents live below the federal poverty line.

The CFA will celebrate the announcement July 26.

3:46 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Officer: Man says Hidden Message Told Him to Kill Somerset Attorney

Clinton Inabnitt
Credit Pulaski County Detention Center

A detective has testified that a man accused of gunning down a prominent Kentucky defense attorney told police he had deciphered a newspaper message instructing him to carry out the killing.

Somerset Police Detective Chris Gates said at a hearing Wednesday that the defendant, Clinton Inabnitt, believed that if he killed Mark Stanziano, the ringing in his ears would stop.

Gates was among officers who interviewed Inabnitt shortly after Stanziano was shot repeatedly as he arrived at his law office in downtown Somerset last month.

Gates says Inabnitt told police he didn't want to carry out the shooting and understood it was wrong but it was something he had to do.

A judge sent the case to a grand jury after hearing testimony from Gates and a sheriff's detective who witnessed the shooting.

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.

10:11 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Judge Rules Ex-Deputy Violated Rights of Detainee

Billy Stinnett's rights were violated by deputy.
Credit Kentucky Department of Corrections

A federal judge has ruled that a former Barren County sheriff's deputy violated the constitutional rights of a man under arrest. U.S. District Judge Joseph McKinley found that Adam Minor used excessive force on Billy Stinnett after a 2010 chase.

The decision is the latest in the long-running case involving former Barren County sheriff Chris Eaton and other officials.

Stinnett claimed in a civil suit filed in federal court in 2011 that Eaton, Minor and other officers struck him or failed to intervene when others struck him after he was arrested.

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