September Receipts Weren’t So Hot

No surprise there, of course.

The General Fund rose 2.6% to $945 million. But the Road Fund? That fell another 20.5% to $110 million.


  • Individual taxes rose 4.9%, up 6% for the calendar year, which doesn’t matter much because we’re just outta the first quarter of the Fiscal Year.
  • Sales taxes up just 1%, up 6.9% for the year
  • Corporate taxes increased 5.9%, up 11.5% for the fiscal year
  • Cancer stick taxes rose 2.9%, up 1.5% for the fiscal year
  • Property taxes up 6.6%, up 4.9% for the year
  • Coal severance taxes sank another 20.9%, down 22.8% for the calendar year
  • Lottery revenue unchanged from last year at $18.5 million, up 2.9% for the fiscal year
  • Motor fuel taxes fell 17.3%, down 16.1% for the year
  • Vehicle use taxes dropped 26.3%, up 7.5% for the calendar year
  • License & Privilege taxes fell 23.6%, down 6.5% for the fiscal year

Click here (Warning: PDF Link) to review the complete report for yourself.

Another Day, Same Crap At The EPSB

The Education Professional Standards Board yesterday appointed Jimmy Adams as its executive director. He’d been serving as the interim for some time and insiders tell us he’s the reason there was a mass exodus of staffers. Aaaaand a few little birdies tell us he’s started some beef with the court reporter on the Joshua Powell case and that’s why the transcript from his 22-day hearing remains in “draft” form. Meaning the case likely won’t be resolved until mid-2016, if ever. [Did Kentucky Kids Lose Again?]

Kentucky community colleges have plans in place and routinely test for all emergencies, including shooters on campus. [H-L]

Black men from around the nation are gathering on the National Mall to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March and call for policing reforms and changes in black communities. [HuffPo]

Louisville, the city Greg Fischer claims is the most compassionate city on earth, killed three people over the weekend. [C-J/AKN]

Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul won the Republican Liberty Caucus straw poll late Saturday in New Hampshire. [The Hill]

At a recent meeting of the Metcalfe County Fiscal Court, Judge-Executive Greg Wilson shared some good news with magistrates regarding the county’s economic climate. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Once you stop laughing at Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree), you can kinda feel sorry for him for being dumb enough to allow Doug Ashley Madison Stafford to run his life. [Politico]

The Rowan County Detention Center Committee met Thursday with the architect and construction manager for the new detention center to discuss several design options, including how the county would handle storm water runoff into Triplett Creek. [The Morehead News]

On the evening of April 29th last year, in the southern Minnesota town of Waseca, a woman was doing the dishes when she looked out her kitchen window and saw a young man walking through her back yard. [New Yorker]

Jack Conway answered some questions at Bowling Green Teabagger Central. [BGDN]

The Shell Farms & Greenhouses is an expansive 1,000-acre property in Garrard County, 37 miles south of Lexington, Kentucky. The five-generation family farm is operated by 31-year-old Giles Shell and his 60-year-old father, Gary. The two are whizzes at making ornamental flowers flourish, and like most farmers in the area, the family has grown tobacco for years. [Newsweek]

The wife of Republican nominee for governor Matt Bevin is defending him in a new 30-second TV ad that began airing Monday. [WKYT]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… A fossilised foetus belonging to an early relative of the horse has been described by scientists. The unborn foal was identified among the remains of its mother – a 48-million-year-old horse-like animal found in Germany’s Messel pit in 2000. [BBC]

Wondering why the Jessamine County crew gets away with operating a fun, oh, drug ring that’s ignored by law enforcement? Because small town “Christians” turn a blind eye once their back has been scratched. The longtime mayor of Wilmore said Sunday that a lighted white cross that sits on top of the city’s water tower will not be moved despite a legal threat by a Madison, Wisconsin, group that says the cross is unconstitutional. [H-L]

Will body cameras be a tool for police reform? Only if bad policy doesn’t get in the way. [HuffPo]

Coal Pandering’s Worse Than Child Abuse, Right? Surely It’s Worse Than That. Or Maybe Elder Abuse?

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jack Conway tried to reinforce his friend-of-coal credentials Thursday, pledging to promote the industry and look for tax incentives to boost production as he distanced himself from a president routinely blamed for coal’s downturn. [H-L]

If you want to stop violence against people, stop violence against animals. [HuffPo]

Because of course they are. Some of Kentucky’s most vulnerable people — frail, elderly and disabled individuals in nursing homes — have been threatened, ridiculed, slapped, injured or sexually abused, but the state’s nursing home industry is seeking relief from what it calls heavy-handed state oversight. [C-J/AKN]

The lack of accurate information about police-involved shootings is roiling the nation’s law enforcement community, leaving officials unable to say whether high-profile killings are isolated events or part of an alarming trend, FBI Director James B. Comey said Wednesday. [WaPo]

What this means is Mark Hebert is prolly spilling the hooker tea. A former University of Louisville basketball player has given investigators a version of events that indicates strippers were in the players’ dorm on at least one occasion, a source close to the investigation told WDRB News. [WDRB]

Leading theologians from the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) are making news this week for again speaking out against ex-gay therapy, also known as reparative or conversion therapy. But what these theologians have been saying at the annual Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC) conference about how to respond to LGBT people belies the supposed progress of rejecting these harmful, ineffective treatments. [ThinkProgress]

A federal judge won’t drop charges against two of the six accused in a scheme to sell millions of dollars of untaxed cigarettes from a storefront in Russell, according to court records. [Ashland Independent]

A few days ago, the RAND Corporation published an opinion piece that raised questions about Surgeon Scorecard, our searchable online database of complication rates for surgeons performing several elective operations. We appreciate the authors’ intentions and plan to take some suggestions into account as we prepare Surgeon Scorecard 2.0. [ProPublica]

Barren Circuit Judge Phillip Patton has issued an order today agreeing with the decision of the Kentucky Office of the Attorney General that the Glasgow Independent Schools Board of Education violated the Open Meetings Act with its closed session on March 30, when it discussed a potential property agreement. [Glasgow Daily Times]

U.S. stocks ended higher on Thursday with the S&P 500 closing at a seven-week high as investors saw further signs of dovishness in the Federal Reserve’s September meeting minutes which shed light on its decision to keep interest rates near zero. [Reuters]

If Madison County institutes a needle-exchange program in an attempt to control infections such as HIV and hepatitis C among inter-venous drug users, it will benefit from the lessons learned by its neighbor to the north. [Richmond Register]

US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has outlined her plan to curb Wall Street abuses. [BBC]

Preservation Kentucky will present its Excellence in Preservation Awards on Saturday at a particularly notable historic site: Traveler’s Rest, home place of Isaac Shelby, the first and fifth governor of Kentucky. [H-L]

Senior U.S. lawmakers have begun probing possible intelligence lapses over Moscow’s intervention in Syria, concerned that American spy agencies were slow to grasp the scope and intention of Russia’s dramatic military offensive there, U.S. congressional sources and other officials told Reuters. [HuffPo]

Happy Friday! Everything Probably Sucks

Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway enjoys a sizable cash advantage over Republican Matt Bevin as the two men head down the home stretch of the governors race. [H-L]

Syria’s chief-of-staff on Thursday declared a wide-ranging ground offensive by government forces, a day after Russian airstrikes and cruise missiles launched from the Caspian Sea backed Damascus’ multipronged advance into two Syrian provinces. [HuffPo]

Former Louisville basketball recruit JaQuan Lyle, in an interview with the NCAA this week, confirmed “the gist of allegations” against U of L in a new book. [C-J/AKN]

When David Martine arrived at the redbrick federal courthouse in Alexandria, Virginia, in the summer of 2011, he was three years past his retirement and had not participated in an interrogation since 2007, when he was one of the CIA’s top inquisitors. On this day, however, he was not going to be asking questions. He was going to be answering them. [Newsweek]

There were some frightening moments at a southern Kentucky elementary school on Wednesday. [WKYT]

The Obama administration has formally threatened a veto on a House bill that would lift the federal ban on crude oil exports. [The Hill]

The Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) Executive Board has given the green light for communities in the region to apply for grants up to $250,000 for job creation and broadband expansion via the Kentucky Appalachian Regional Development (KARD) fund. [State Journal]

A U.S. jury on Wednesday awarded a cancer patient $1.6 million after finding DuPont was liable for leaking a toxic chemical used to make Teflon into drinking water near one of its plants. [Reuters]

Following a report this summer showing Floyd County led the state last year in the per capita number of drug-overdose deaths, House Speaker Greg Stumbo is gathering state and local leaders in Prestonsburg on Friday morning to discuss solutions. The public and community partners are invited to attend. [Floyd County Times]

In March 2015, a Saudi-led coalition began bombing Yemen in an attempt to support the embattled regime and counter the advances of the Houthi rebels. This coalition, supported by logistics and intelligence provided by the United States, has now been accused of war crimes in a recent report by a prominent international rights group. [ThinkProgress]

Some prominent Northern Kentucky Republicans have told the Enquirer they support Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jack Conway. The bitterness among many Republicans against the tea party, which has challenged many in leadership recent years, might catch up to Republican candidate Matt Bevin, often seen as an outsider candidate who has heavy tea party support. []

The death penalty reared its head again at the U.S. Supreme Court Wednesday. It was the first time the court publicly considered a death case since last term, when a constitutional challenge to lethal injection procedures erupted into a rare, nasty and vituperative debate among the justices. This time, the issues were far more technical but still a matter of life and death. [NPR]

The University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy will train pharmacists across the state to distribute naloxone, a medication used to prevent overdoses from heroin and other opioids. [H-L]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… If you’ve ever wanted to experience space from the perspective of an astronaut, here’s your chance. [HuffPo]

That KSP Situation Is Absolutely Fascinating

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray’s inauguration fund has paid a $510 fine for filing financial records 46 days late. [H-L]

President Barack Obama apologized to Doctors Without Borders on Wednesday for the American air attack that killed at least 22 people at its hospital in Afghanistan, and said the U.S. would examine military procedures to look for better ways to prevent such incidents. [HuffPo]

A lawsuit filed by a woman exonerated of a murder after serving eight years behind bars offers new details about how she alleges an overzealous Kentucky State Police detective framed her. [C-J/AKN]

Top House Democrats are accusing the chairman of the House Oversight Committee of refusing to share the unedited footage from the recent undercover videos targeting Planned Parenthood. [The Hill]

U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Louisville, is predicting low voter turnout for March’s Republican presidential caucus next year. Yarmuth expects turnout will be “pretty pathetic” because voters in the state have no history with caucuses. [WFPL]

U.S. stocks ended stronger after a volatile session on Wednesday, led by a rebound in biotechnology companies that pushed the S&P 500 to its highest level in three weeks. [Reuters]

An attorney for former Glasgow Fire Department Sgt. Roger Hampton has filed documents with the Kentucky Court of Appeals that attempt to get the case regarding his firing dismissed. [Glasgow Daily Times]

A new study published last month in Sociological Forum has found two important connections that demonstrate how discrimination has a negative impact on the health and well-being of transgender people. [ThinkProgress]

Casey County Clerk Casey Davis says his office is now issuing marriage licenses. [WKYT]

Verizon is merging its cellphone tracking supercookie with AOL’s ad tracking network to match users’ online habits with their offline details. [ProPublica]

When best-selling author Neil Gaiman was asked to give advice to aspiring authors at Western Kentucky University’s latest installment of the 2015-16 Cultural Enhancement Series on Tuesday night, his first piece of advice was only one word. [BGDN]

After years of drug addiction, Jayne Fuentes feels she’s close to getting her life back on track, as long as she doesn’t get arrested again — but not for using drugs. She fears it will be because she still owes court fines and fees, including hundreds of dollars for her public defender. [NPR]

With platoons of Republicans running for president, the Democratic National Committee has had too much on its plate to spend much time commenting on Kentucky’s gubernatorial race. [H-L]

The Affordable Care Act’s chief aim is to extend coverage to people without health insurance. One of the 2010 law’s primary means to achieve that goal is expanding Medicaid eligibility to more people near the poverty level. But a crucial court ruling in 2012 granted states the power to reject the Medicaid expansion. [HuffPo]

The Next Governor Will Likely Ignore It

Kentucky’s next governor will inherit about $30 billion in public pension debt from departing Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear — more than twice what the state government spends in a year, and up 40 percent since voters re-elected Beshear in 2011. [John Cheves]

The real problem is too many young people still can’t afford a college education. [HuffPo]

Maybe next time he’ll try city council instead of big dogging in the race for goober. Independent Drew Curtis said he would vote for Donald Trump, which frankly seemed like an odd choice for the progressive, populist candidate from Lexington. By Friday, he was walking that back in a tweet. [C-J/AKN]

Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign has won the endorsement of the National Education Association (NEA), the teachers union said in a statement Saturday. [The Hill]

Anyone who spends time in the alternate universe that is Kentucky politics hears some version of this line over and over: “This is the strangest governor’s race I’ve ever seen.” [Ronnie Ellis]

President Barack Obama said on Friday that he has asked his team to look for new ways to enforce existing regulations to keep guns away from criminals in the wake of the mass shooting in Oregon. [Reuters]

Shipping containers can travel all over the world. Now, one has landed in a Kentucky woman’s yard, and it is being turned into her new home. [WDRB]

In Alabama, a positive drug test can have dire repercussions for pregnant women and new mothers. Their newborns can be taken from them. They can lose custody of their other children. They can face lengthy sentences in the most notorious women’s prison in the United States and thousands of dollars in fees and fines. Yet the hospitals that administer those drug tests — and turn the results over to authorities — are exceedingly reluctant to disclose their policies to the public. [ProPublica]

It’s the type of decline Southcentral Kentucky counties are thrilled to incur. Barren, Allen, Metcalfe, Monroe, Edmonson and Hart counties have enjoyed a drop of more than 1 percent in jobless rates over the last year, a study released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in September showed. [Glasgow Daily Times]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… A great swathe of Pluto that features a strange rippling terrain is perhaps the highlight of the latest image release from the New Horizons mission. [BBC]

The report cards are in — not for students, but districts and schools across the state. Scores recorded by the Kentucky Department of Education in the Unbridled Learning College and Career-Readiness report released Thursday morning show that the Madison County Schools district “outperformed all seven surrounding county school districts as well as Berea Independent Schools,” an online release from MCS noted. [Richmond Register]

As Governor of the USA’s worst state, Florida, Jeb Bush embraced his inner Veto Corleone. His 2,549 line-item vetoes cut millions of dollars from social programs, health centers and projects backed by people who crossed him. [Mother Jones]

It’s almost funny watching education reporters act surprised that school districts pretend to improve with self-evaluations. It’s like no one believes school district administrations can be more corrupt than Frankfort. Along with hard work, more favorable self-evaluations played a role in Fayette County Public Schools’ improved performance in Kentucky’s accountability system in 2014-15, acting senior director of academic services Marlene Helm. [H-L]

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) doubled down on his support for tighter gun control legislation on Thursday in the wake of the mass shooting at an Oregon community college. [HuffPo]