2:07 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

National Publication Honors Executive Director of Kynect

Carrie Banahan
Credit Commonwealth of Kentucky

Governing Magazine has named the executive director for Kentucky’s healthcare exchange, Carrie Banahan, as one of its nine “Public Officials of the Year” for 2014. 

Banahan oversaw the creation of kynect, which signed up 521,000 Kentuckians under the new healthcare law last year.  Banahan will be honored at a dinner in Washington, D.C. on December 4th.

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10:03 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Kentucky Soldiers Return From Africa

Credit WAVE-3 Photo

Home in time for the holidays!

About 50 members of the Kentucky Air National Guard returned to Louisville this morning from Africa, where they have been helping battle Ebola.

The 123rd Contingency Response Group established a cargo processing hub in Senegal during its deployment. 

The Air National Guard says the members were stationed hundreds of miles away from areas affected by Ebola outbreaks. 

They will not have to undergo a quarantine upon their return but are undergoing symptom monitoring as a precaution.


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5:57 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Campaign Aims to Reduce Traffic Deaths in Kentucky

Kentucky State Police officials say the state is at its lowest highway fatality rate in nearly 50 years. Now a KSP campaign is aimed at reducing highway fatalities even more.

The "Finish Strong" campaign urges motorists to wear seat belts, reduce speed, refrain from distractions and never drive impaired.

The project began November 1 with a data-driven strategy that places enforcement details in high crash zones where fatalities have occurred. State police say the effort will continue through the holidays.

5:35 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Barren County Will Pay to Settle Lawsuit Against Former Sheriff

The county's fiscal court Tuesday night approved paying Billy Stinnett $20,000 to settle his claim of excessive force against former sheriff Chris Eaton and four deputies.

Third district magistrate Carl Dickerson told the Glasgow Daily Times he was torn about approving the money but it "was time the lawsuit goes away."

Magistrate Chris Steward disagreed with the settlement, saying he felt like "we're being almost extorted to do this."

The Kentucky Association of Counties will pay a portion of the $20,000 if it stands, how much hasn't been decided.

5:25 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Campbellsville University Fined Over Videographer Safety During 'Ice Bucket Challenge'

Campbellsville University will pay $4,000 after an investigator found a workplace-safety violation during a charity event where a firefighter was fatally injured.

 The Lexington Herald-Leader said a state Office of Occupational Safety and Health investigator issued a citation because someone videotaping the Aug. 21 event from atop a raised maintenance lift wasn't wearing a safety harness.

The Campbellsville firefighter, Capt. Tony Grider, died a month after he and another firefighter were injured when they came in contact with a high-voltage power line while in the bucket of an aerial ladder truck.

The firefighters were spraying water on band members taking part in an Ice Bucket Challenge to raise research money for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.

State Labor Cabinet spokesman Daniel Lowry said the cabinet is investigating the accident that resulted in Grider's death.

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3:28 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Kentucky Looks To Bolster Defense Against Healthcare Associated Infections

Kentucky’s Department of Public Health wants to upgrade its regulations that monitor healthcare-associated infections, or "HAIs". 

Those are infections people get from a healthcare facility while they are receiving treatment for another condition. Last year, there were more than 9,500 investigations of these infections in Kentucky.

Dr. Kraig Humbaugh is the senior deputy commissioner for the Kentucky Department for Public Health. He says the department’s proposal would update HAI definitions, improve reporting methods and make the process more consistent with what’s happening nationally.

“We're one of the minority of states that currently don't have any mandated reporting of specific healthcare associated infections. This regulation will change that,” said Humbaugh.

Humbaugh says the new regulations would also help provide better data on infections.

The proposal is open for public comment until December 1.

1:30 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Freezing Temps Cause Rare Cancellation At Churchill Downs

Credit Churchill Downs

This week’s blast of winter weather has prompted officials at Churchill Downs to cancel Wednesday's live racing program.  

The main dirt track is frozen and spokesman Darren Rogers says the Churchill Downs maintenance crews won’t be able to get it into suitable shape for racing until temperatures rise above freezing.  

He says the frigid weather is especially tough on jockeys and outriders.

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12:56 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Kentucky Courts Near Bottom In Serving Low Income Population

Only Oklahoma ranks lower than Kentucky when it comes to how the state’s court system serves its low-income and disabled population.  On a 100-point scale, Kentucky comes in at 33.4 percent. Indiana is just three places higher at 36.2 percent. 

Part of the Justice Index rankings is based on how much free legal aid is available to residents.

Scott Crocker is executive director for Kentucky Legal Aid. He says federal and state funding for his organization is down “real significantly” over the last 4-5 years.

“We are able to provide some level of services to most people who call in and meet our eligibility criteria,” said Crocker.  “But, a lot of people need an attorney to go to court with them and sometimes we’re able to do that, but a lot of times we only have the resources to provide counsel and advice.”

He says Kentucky Legal Aid expects to give some form of legal advice to 12,000 people in south-central and western Kentucky this year.   All of the cases involve civil law.

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10:19 am
Tue November 18, 2014

Elizabethtown Council Approves Contract With Hall of Fame Organizers

The former home of the First Presbyterian Church in Elizabethtown is set to become part of the Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame
Credit Emil Moffatt

The city of Elizabethtown will be responsible for testing and any abatement necessary at the historic church that’s set to become part of the Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame. 

The News-Enterprise reports the City Council voted unanimously Monday to enter into a contract with the board of the Hall of Fame for a fee simple title.  The former home of First Presbyterian Church has been vacant since 2011 when a non-profit organization moved out.

Organizers say they’re close to having the $1.15 million in place to start construction.  A groundbreaking ceremony could take place as early as July.

3:27 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Hagel Updates U.S. Ebola Mission at Fort Campbell

Chuck Hagel
Credit US Dept. of Defense

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says there are encouraging signs of progress against the Ebola virus in West Africa, and he says the U.S. military can take some credit for containing it.

Hagel told a group of 101st Airborne Division soldiers Monday that it is too early to say when the U.S. military's Ebola mission in Liberia and Senegal will be finished.

 He said, "We're not at the end yet."

 Hagel toured the pre-deployment training that is given to soldiers before they go to West Africa. The soldiers are providing logistics and other support there but are not in direct contact with people infected with the virus. Nevertheless, soldiers are required to undergo 21 days of quarantine upon their return.

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