Page One & The ‘Ville Voice on TeeVee

You’d think those fancy tv people would learn their lesson and stop putting us on the air– but no! We’re way too powerful and important or whatever.

This week Rick referred to Larry Clark as Perry Clark (Perry: at least he didn’t refer to you as Doug Hawkins), made fun of Jerry Abramson’s budget and yammered about various other politically incorrect topics. Ruh ro.

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Afternoon Update Dept of You Missed It

True Meaning of Pictures: Shelby Lee Adams’ Appalachia will be playing at the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft next Tuesday, June 3 at 8:00 P.M. $5.00 or free for Louisville Film Society and KMAC members. [KMAC, Film]

We called this ages ago. The re-election campaign of Rep. John Yarmuth (D KY-03) is taking over the former Obama headquarters in Louisville. Since the Obama campaign has abandoned Kentucky once for all. [Politicker]

Oh, and Trey Grayson rightfully criticizes Governor Beshear for excluding the Secretary of State’s office from having the opportunity to appoint rotating members of the Executive Branch Ethics Commission. Kind of silly to ignore, really, since the SoS is the state’s chief elections officer. [Politicker]

Tons more after the jump…

Read moreAfternoon Update Dept of You Missed It

Thursday. Kentucky is Still Broke. Newt’s Coming.

Special session is on the way. Governor Beshear is meeting with House and Senate leaders this morning to discussion a fix of the pension system. A 10:00 A.M. press conference is involved to discuss the broken system which, believe it or not, could be bankrupted in about a decade if we don’t do something to stave off disaster since there are currently billions in unfunded liabilities. [H-L]

At a time when the entire state is broke or whatever, David Williams is moving forward with spending a butt ton of money to renovate offices in the Capitol Annex in Frankfort. Because you know how sad and shameful it is for a state senator to have a tiny office. Okay, honestly, who the eff cares how large their crappy office in Frankfort happens to be? [Hebert]

Meanwhile, the budget crunch (which is quite real and does exist, contrary to Republican talking points) is forcing public defenders all over Kentucky to turn away poor clients who need attorneys. Let’s see how long our court system can stay afloat with no money and an ever-shrinking staff. Good luck if you’re stuck in legal limbo. [C-J]

Newt Gingrich, Larry Sabato and others are headliners for The Council of State Governments’ event in Lexington that begins today. We’re not sure if Newt will discuss leaving his wife as she’s on her deathbed or anything but if you’re going this weekend, let us know of anything exciting. [PolWatchers]

The Mexicans are taking over! Somebody call Doug Hawkins in Louisville so he can protect our white women and attack the Courier-Journal for being elitist or whatever. Why does the Courier-Journal hate America and love terrorist Rachel Ray? [C-J]

If you’ve some how missed it, former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan is coming clean about the Bush Administration. He says the Valerie Plame leak case was the turning point for him and goes on from there. Watch his interview on Today at the link and watch MSNBC tonight at 8:00 for his interview with Keith Olbermann. [MSNBC]

Ed. Commissioner Jon Draud & His Fancy New Car

Education Commissioner Jon Draud. Remember him? Well, you better, because this is about to tick you completely off.

At a time when Kentucky faces serious budget problems and even more serious cuts and restrictions in the realm of education– we’re spending THOUSANDS of dollars for Jon Draud to drive a fancy new 2008 Chrysler 300. A Chrysler 300 with more than $13,000 in options added to its base price.

All while teachers from Georgetown to Glasgow are forced to forfeit classroom funds that were raised by students just to pay utility bills. That odor is one of hypocrisy and waste, boys and girls.

Take a look at the Courier-Journal’s story for details:

Jon Draud said the lease had expired on the previous car he had been driving, and the state came to him and asked what kind of car he wanted to drive.

He settled on a 2008 Chrysler 300, which has a base price of $18,101 with standard equipment. With the add-ons requested by Draud, the state ended up paying $30,697 for the car.

-SNIP-

Lisa Gross, spokeswoman for the state education department, said it has been cutting back on travel expenses in an effort to trim its operations budget by about 7 percent.

“We’ve encouraged our employees to try and use alternate ways, whether it be e-mail or setting up a video conference via the Internet … ,” she said. “We’ve also cut back on the number of people who travel, especially if it’s traveling out of state.”

Yeah, our sentiments exactly. Who in their right mind believes a V8 engine is required for a $150 navigation system? And who in their right mind believes we need to provide luxury automobiles for state employees? And that whole “large cars are safer” bit? Please.

Somebody has some explaining to do to the citizens of this Commonwealth and that explaining needs to happen RIGHT NOW!

Most Awful and Hilarious Thing Ever

LEO’s Jim Welp penned quite possibly the most awful and hilarious thing ever this week about Harry Moberly. We absolutely love it.

See for yourself:

Fallout from the new state budget began settling on the Kentucky dystopia last week like a Harry Moberly White-Castle fart in a crowded movie theater

OMG. Someone get the smelling salts!

State Prosecutors Anticipate Layoffs. Woops.

Due to budget cuts, state prosecutors anticipate major layoffs. According to a press release from the Office of the Attorney General, the layoff plan is being formulated now. Thanks to underfunding in the fancy budget we just botched together to jack our state up, approximately 100 people from prosecutors’ offices across Kentucky will be given the weighty, broken, backwater axe. That’s ten percent of the prosecutorial workforce in the commonwealth.

“We simply do not have the money to keep our existing staff on board,” said Ray Larson, Fayette County Commonwealth’s Attorney and member of the Prosecutors Advisory Council. “Now that the budget has been finalized, we will begin to formulate how the layoff plan will be implemented so that to the extent possible, public safety will not be compromised,” said Larson.

Excited yet? It gets better.

Every criminal case filed in the Commonwealth must be prosecuted by a County or Commonwealth’s Attorney. Caseloads for prosecutors have increased dramatically in the last ten years. In 2007 County Attorneys were handling caseloads in excess of 3,000 cases per prosecutor. Since the addition of Family Courts in 2002, County Attorneys are now handling at least 40,000 more cases each year. County Attorneys are responsible for prosecution of all District Court cases – including misdemeanor, juvenile and domestic crimes.

Since 2002 Commonwealth’s Attorneys, responsible for prosecution of all felony cases, have seen a 21% increase in their caseload. In 2002, approximately 27,000 felony cases were filed. Last year, nearly 32,000 felony cases such as murder, rape and child sexual abuse were filed. This is a 7,000 case increase from just five years ago.

The layoffs are freaking both the presidents of the County and Commonwealth’s Attorneys Associations out.

“The budgets of the Unified Prosecutorial System are personnel driven,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Chris Cohron. “We do not have state cars or other expenses that can be cut when we are not funded sufficiently. In our case, personnel accounts for more than 90% of our budget.”

Brucie Moore, President of the County Attorneys’ Association, notes that the budget for the County Attorneys is over 98% personnel. “The County Attorneys of this state are already overburdened and stretched to the limit. Losing people from these offices is going to be devastating to the criminal justice system.”

Just more evidence that your governor and legislature are working hard for you, Kentucky. They tried really hard to hammer out that budget in the five seconds remaining in the session. Hope you all don’t starve to death as a result.

Read the six million billion page press release after the jump…

Read moreState Prosecutors Anticipate Layoffs. Woops.