Anything Bourbon-Related Is Good News

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

Sometimes the best ideas really do come while enjoying a glass of bourbon. [H-L]

A universal flu vaccine — one that provides immunity against every strain of the influenza virus for multiple years — is the holy grail of flu research. It would be a medical breakthrough on the order of penicillin, with the potential to save hundreds of thousands of lives every year. And scientists just got one crucial step closer to making it a reality. [HuffPo]

As the 2014 legislative session drew to a close with casino legislation dead, House Speaker Greg Stumbo vowed the issue would be his top priority the next year. [C-J/AKN]

The science of predicting hurricanes has come a long way since Katrina caught New Orleans officials off guard 10 years ago. [Reuters]

On October 1, 2014, many local residents visited Berea’s Boone Tavern Inn to mark what they believed would be a milestone. After years of being alcohol free, wine and spirits were on the menu in the tavern restaurant. [Richmond Register]

In the fall of 2003, police in New Jersey received a call from a concerned neighbor who’d found a boy rummaging in her garbage, looking for food. He was 19 years old but was 4 feet tall and weighed just 45 pounds. Investigators soon learned that the boy’s three younger brothers were also severely malnourished. [ProPublica]

We live in cynical times and my job exposes me to lots of people and events which feed cynicism. [Ronnie Ellis]

If conservatives are so convinced that gun-free zones attract killers, then why do so many conservative places and events ban guns? [ThinkProgress]

The Caverna Board of Education needed less than 10 minutes to complete a public hearing and subsequent vote in favor of increasing the tax rate for the 2015-16 school year during Thursday’s special-called school board meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Remember way back to two weeks ago when the Donald Trump candidacy was the best thing to ever happen to Jeb Bush? [Politico]

Casey County Clerk Casey Davis, who recently embarked on a bicycle ride from Pikeville to Paducah, made a stop at the Rowan County Courthouse on Friday morning to show his support for Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, who is still refusing to issue marriage licenses despite a federal court ruling. [The Morehead News]

The White House has appointed its first presidential envoy for hostage affairs as part of the US government’s review on responding to hostage situations. [BBC]

Open spaces, communication and environmental responsibility were the focuses of the recent $5.5 million renovation to the Council of State Governments building off of Lexington’s Iron Works Pike. [H-L]

West Virginia lawmakers will begin talks next month about establishing an independent state inspector general’s office tasked with coordinating investigations into corruption, waste and fraud across state agencies. The new office would be modeled partly on successful examples of IG offices in other states, including Virginia, Louisiana, Indiana and Ohio. [HuffPo]

No Puppies & Rainbows Here Today

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The Kentucky Kernel, the University of Kentucky’s independent campus newspaper, announced Monday that it will cut production of the print newspaper from five days a week to two in an effort to put more emphasis on its online products. [H-L]

This is just… sick. Two beloved Virginia journalists were shot and killed Wednesday morning when a gunman opened fire in a shocking moment caught on live television. [HuffPo]

A wildlife research organization that studies the expanding range of cougars in North America has come to a different conclusion from the one offered by state authorities on how an ill-fated mountain lion made its way into Kentucky. [C-J/AKN]

Here’s a real ruh ro moment for a few legislators… The chief executive of Rentboy.com and six employees running the website were arrested Tuesday and charged with promoting prostitution under the federal Travel Act. [The Hill]

The high fence surrounding a Purdue University research farm here was installed to keep out pesky deer, but this summer it served a second purpose: Keeping federal drug agents at bay. The research farm, 10 miles south of Purdue’s West Lafayette campus, is home to the first legally grown industrial hemp crop in Indiana in decades. [News & Tribune]

Often maligned for speaking too frankly, Vice President Joe Biden’s reputation for shooting from the lip might be one of his biggest weapons if he does decide to run against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. [Reuters]

Three Kentuckians made Modern Healthcare’s “100 Most Influential People in Healthcare” list. [Business First]

Across the country, those who support abortion rights and those who oppose them are feuding in court over how much information should be disclosed about women undergoing abortions. Supporters say there’s no margin for error. Opponents say it’s about ensuring quality care. [ProPublica]

House Speaker Greg Stumbo will propose a constitutional amendment that would allow as many as seven casinos to open in Kentucky, with tax revenue from the businesses dedicated to public education, boosting the racing industry and shoring up the state’s ailing retirement system. [WFPL]

By 2050, an area of forests the size of India is set to be wiped off the planet if humans continue on their current path of deforestation, according to a new report. That’s bad news for the creatures that depend on these forest ecosystems for survival, but it’s also bad news for the climate, as the loss of these forests will release more than 100 gigatons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. [ThinkProgress]

Only the Madison County School Board and the fiscal court as well as the cities of Richmond and Berea, have not set property tax rates for 2015. [Richmond Register]

NPR’S Audie Cornish talks to Megan Greene, managing director and chief economist at Manulife, about how the interest rate hike will affect mortgages, auto and student loans, and consumer behavior. [NPR]

Visitors entering the Georgetown Police Department’s new $5 million headquarters on Bourbon Street might notice two details. [H-L]

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest renewed the Obama administration’s call for Congress to take action on gun control after a gunman shot and killed a reporter and cameraman during a live television broadcast on Wednesday. [HuffPo]

FBI Has Job Security In Kentucky Corruption

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Federal crime-fighters started an outreach campaign Friday to recruit Kentuckians to help uncover government corruption and end the state’s “fairly sordid” history of scandals that rob trust in government, law enforcement officials said. [H-L]

Kurdish militia fighting Islamic State in Syria accused Turkey on Saturday of targeting it at least four times in the past week, calling the attacks provocative and hostile. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin told a thoroughbred industry group Thursday that he supports the continuance of the historical horse racing games that opponents say are slot machines. [C-J/AKN]

Sen. Rand Paul is attributing GOP rival Donald Trump’s rise in the polls to a momentary “loss of sanity.” [The Hill]

We’re still effectively operating debtors prisons in Kentucky with taxpayer dollars. Jailing people who can’t afford to pay fines. [Richmond Register]

Woah, it’s like Steve Henry but in Pennsylvania. Fascinating how that always works. [Reuters]

The Boyd County School District is joining in the fight against a landfill that opponents say is a stinky nuisance. [Ashland Independent]

Democrat Hillary Clinton sought to persuade African-Americans on Friday to resist any temptation to side with Republican Jeb Bush in the 2016 presidential race as they offered differing visions on how to tackle economic and racial inequality. [More Reuters]

TWB Company, a Worthington Steel and WISCO Tailored Blanks joint venture company, received preliminary approval for $360,000 in state tax incentives for a new operation in Barren County. [Glasgow Daily Times]

In 2013, The New York Times asked readers in Southern states to share their experiences of being gay in the South. Now, in 2015, they reflect on their progress, struggles, hopes for the future, and what the Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage means to them. [NY Times]

Miss the KTRS funding workgroup meeting last week? Check out the archived footage. [KET]

In 2006, Alabama lawmakers passed a bill aimed at punishing parents who turned their kitchens and garages into do-it-yourself meth labs, exposing their children to toxic chemicals and noxious fumes. Support was bipartisan, the vote was unanimous, and the bill was quickly signed into law. [ProPublica]

The historic slide in coal jobs that has undermined the economy of Eastern Kentucky continued in the second quarter of 2015, with the industry cutting another 10.6 percent of its workforce in the region. The layoffs left an estimated 5,889 employed at coal mines and facilities in Eastern Kentucky, the lowest total in more than a century. [H-L]

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said the concept of “choice” is an ephemeral one for low-income women who live in states that pass laws limiting access to abortion, as they may not be able to afford to travel to a state with less onerous restrictions. [HuffPo]

EKY Medicaid Fraud Mess Is Not Over

Told ya Jack’s probably gonna win. Conway, the Democratic nominee, leads Bevin 45 percent to 42 percent, with 13 percent of voters undecided. Curtis polled at 8 percent, leaving Conway with 43 percent and Bevin with 38 percent. [H-L]

The Kentucky Derby was very good for Churchill Downs, but Big Fish has been even better. The Louisville-based gambling and racetrack company announced late Wednesday that it had record revenue of more than $409 million in the quarter that ended June 30. [H-L]

There’s a simple, popular solution that Republican leaders in Congress could grab hold of to get themselves out of their embarrassing public fight over the highway bill, and President Barack Obama could help force them to do it. [HuffPo]

A federal judge has dismissed most of a whistleblower suit filed by two federal employees who alleged that Eastern Kentucky disability lawyer Eric Conn colluded with a judge to rig Social Security cases in favor of Conn and his clients. [C-J/AKN]

The Obama administration is poised to change some deadlines for states to comply with its climate rule for power plants when the regulation is made final. [The Hill]

The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet will hold a public hearing on the Big Run Landfill permit renewal next month at the Boyd County Community Center. [Ashland Independent & Press Release]

Republican Donald Trump on Wednesday pushed back against a lawyer he had berated when she requested a break to pump breast milk for her infant, the latest controversial remark to emerge in his presidential campaign. [Reuters]

After several tense exchanges between Kentucky’s candidates for governor, Republican Matt Bevin during a media interview accused a WAVE 3 News reporter of working for his rival. [WAVE3]

Great news like this hits and inevitably some wingnut GMO-denier crawls out of the woodwork to yell. [ThinkProgress]

Rowan County has thrown bigoted hypocrite Kim Davis to the wolves. [WFPL]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… A human tooth dating to around 565,000 years ago has been found by a 16-year-old volunteer in France. [BBC]

His story made national headlines in less than 12 hours and a lot of people are standing behind the Bullitt County man who was arrested after shooting down a drone. [WDRB]

The United States is emerging as the world’s hog farm—the country where massive foreign meat companies like Brazil’s JBS and China’s WH Group (formerly Shuanghui) alight when they want to take advantage of rising global demand for pork. [Mother Jones]

Woodford County residents like the small-town atmosphere of where they live, but they say the lack of available goods and services is a major downside, according to the results of a countywide survey released Tuesday. [H-L]

A fight over an incarcerated Alabama woman’s ability to have an abortion took a strange turn as the state moved to terminate the woman’s parental rights in order to prevent her from accessing the procedure. [HuffPo]

Faux Family Foundation Hit A Big Nerve

The only reason not allow the demonstration is because they know it harms their case when people see it’s just slot machines by a different name. Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate denied a motion by The Family Foundation to require racetracks to provide an in-court demonstration of historical wagering, or instant racing. [H-L]

One of the nation’s most recognizable names in climate science, Dr. James Hansen, released a new paper this week warning that even 2 degrees Celsius of global warming may be “highly dangerous” for humanity. [HuffPo]

Despite the fact that Matt Bevin opposes gambling “on every level,” two companies that he operated invested heavily in casinos while he was in charge — sometimes owning more than $37 million in gambling stocks at any one time — according to Security and Exchange Commission filings. [C-J/AKN]

Nearly a decade after legislation was put in place to protect U.S. military personnel and their families from predatory financial products, the Military Lending Act received a much-needed update to close loopholes often exploited by shady lenders to skirt the rules and put the financial lives of servicemembers at risk. [Consumerist]

The Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (BGCAPP) achieved another milestone this week as the facility’s control room began operating 24 hours per day, seven days per week. [Richmond Register]

Republican insiders are reconciling themselves to the idea that Donald Trump won’t be exiting the stage anytime soon — and their main concern now is limiting his damage to their party. [The Hill]

Kentucky State Police Trooper 1st Class Michael Murriell tackled the tough issue of modern-day perceptions about law enforcement officers during Monday’s Ashland Rotary Club meeting. [Ashland Independent]

President Obama is enjoying a winning streak lately, with the Supreme Court reaffirming his signature health care law and Iran agreeing to curbs on its nuclear program. But one longstanding goal continues to bedevil him: closing the wartime prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. [NY Times]

The Glasgow Independent Schools Board of Education voted this evening in a special-called meeting to accept a new proposal from Reddy Farms LLC that allows for the same donation of land known as the Foster property as in a prior agreement, but with no requirement to change the name of South Green Elementary School to “Reddy Elementary School.” [Glasgow Daily Times]

U.S. charter schools are defaulting on bonds at a rate of 3.3 percent, a level higher than that recorded three years ago but still not one which should concern investors, according to the co-publisher of a report made available on Tuesday. [Reuters]

Almost seven full months into the job, Jailer Wes Coldiron is keeping himself and Rowan County Detention Center inmates as busy as possible. [The Morehead News]

At the end of last year, a group of senators effectively killed the wind energy industry’s most important tax benefit — a $13 billion tax break to help the industry compete with fossil fuels. But now, another group of senators is trying to bring those tax breaks back. [ThinkProgress]

Kentucky Republicans will have their longtime standard-bearer at this year’s Fancy Farm picnic. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he will attend Kentucky’s premier political event on Saturday, Aug. 1 in western Kentucky. [H-L]

Two wingnuts are arguing over when to start new wars. Because that’s what wingnuts do. [HuffPo]

Gay Panic Is Heating Up Everywhere

Steve Robertson, chairman and executive director of the Kentucky Republican Party, is taking a job next month with a public affairs firm in Lexington. [H-L]

We’re still trying to eliminate sweatshops and child labor by buying right. But that’s not how the world works in 2015. [HuffPo]

Churchill Downs Inc., having bet on the future of free games played online, is asking a federal judge to dismiss a case that contends those games are illegal casino gambling. [C-J/AKN]

At a roundtable in New York on Tuesday, Democratic presidential candidate and former Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) released his immigration platform for “New Americans,” announcing that he would go further than President Obama on immigration policies by enacting sweeping reforms to provide deportation relief for undocumented immigrants. [ThinkProgress]

It’s not ginseng harvest season, but that’s not stopping some people from taking this uncommon plant. [Ashland Independent]

Wondering why poor kids are unhealthy? The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday adopted a GOP amendment that would provide schools flexibility in meeting Department of Agriculture (USDA) rules for serving whole-grain products and reducing sodium levels. [The Hill]

A new law is beginning in Kentucky that allows motorcyclists to run red lights. [WHAS11]

In a video released Wednesday night, multiple police officers seem to be holding 28-year-old Sandra Bland to the ground while she cries out, “You just slammed my head into the ground, do you not even care about that?” Three days later, Bland was found dead in a jail cell. [ThinkProgress]

A company owned by Republican candidate for Kentucky governor Matt Bevin has been delinquent on its property taxes multiple times and is currently listed as “not in good standing” in Maine. [WAVE3]

Closed committee meetings are typically wonkish, routine affairs. But Friday’s session of Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee broke that pattern in spectacular fashion, laying bare the growing acrimony and sense of disorder within the House Republican Conference. [Politico]

A controversial project that called for logging and burning to improve forest health at Land Between The Lakes has been canceled. [WLEX18]

The US and Russia are among five countries to have signed a deal to prevent commercial fishing in the melting Arctic sea ice near the North Pole. [BBC]

A 30 percent jump in fatal drug overdoses in Fayette County last year contributed to a statewide increase in drug-related deaths, state officials reported Wednesday. [H-L]

Washington has delayed highway funds so long even red states are raising gas taxes. [HuffPo]

Instant Racing Case Just Got More Fun

Franklin Circuit Court Judge Thomas Wingate heard arguments Wednesday in an instant-racing lawsuit on a motion by the Family Foundation to have an in-court demonstration of the electronic games based on past horse races. [H-L]

U.S. employers added a solid 223,000 jobs in June, and the unemployment rate fell to 5.3 percent, a seven-year low. The numbers reflect a job market moving close to full health and raise expectations that the Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates as early as September. [HuffPo]

The special rounds of golf were arranged by the tournament host, the billionaire coal operator and Greenbrier resort owner Jim Justice, who has been a huge contributor to Beshear’s political causes. But Beshear’s golf excursion — not publicized by the Governor’s Office — comes as Justice remains under watch of the Kentucky Department of Natural Resources as part of an agreed order reached last August for Justice to resolve a record number of strip-mine reclamation violations. [C-J/AKN]

A federal court said in a Monday order that the National Security Agency can resume the bulk collection of American’s phone records for roughly five months as the program is phased out. [The Hill]

Calling Jack Conway a coward seems like a bit of a stretch. A man afraid to answer questions about his brother’s sheningans and how he was involved? Check. Someone who panders to coal publicly while singing a different tune privately? Absolutely. Someone who stands against homophobia while Bevin pushes anti-gay hatred? Of course. But coward? Uh, not based in reality. [WHAS11]

The White House lifted a 40-year-old ban on taking photos during public tours of the executive mansion on Wednesday, delighting tourists who immediately began posting pictures on social media. [Reuters]

The first phase of Louisville’s minimum wage increase went into effect Wednesday. [WFPL]

Now that Chris Christie is officially running for president, his record as governor of New Jersey will be getting a lot more scrutiny. As we reported with The Washington Post in April, there’s plenty to look at. [ProPublica]

The acting director of the General Assembly’s staffing and management arm won’t seek the permanent job. [Ronnie Ellis]

The good news for most Americans is that incomes have finally started to grow again. But the bad news is that the richest of the rich are still making off with far more gains, according to the latest data analysis by economist Emmanuel Saez. [ThinkProgress]

Senator Mitch McConnell is standing by his call to remove the statue of Jefferson Davis from the state Capitol Rotunda. [WDRB]

The United States and Brazil unveil ambitious energy goals in a sign of growing co-operation after a spying scandal damaged ties two years ago. [BBC]

Kentucky State University has hired former Fayette County Public Schools official Vincent Mattox as the new assistant to the president for academic and school district outreach. [H-L]

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), whose bid for the Democratic nomination for president has drawn the largest crowds on the campaign trail, is raking in major money as well. [HuffPo]