Kentuckians Deserve A Statewide Smoking Ban

A public smoking ban that failed to pass was among the top priorities of Kentucky’s highest paid lobbyists this year. [H-L]

Transgender people receiving Medicare may no longer be automatically denied coverage for sex reassignment surgeries, a U.S. Department of Health and Services review board ruled Friday in a groundbreaking decision that recognizes the procedures as a medically necessary and effective treatment for individuals who do not identify with their biological sex. [HuffPo]

Have you seen what Greg Fischer is trying to do in Louisville? With opposition mounting, Louisville Metro Council leaders have hashed out a compromise that would reduce Mayor Greg Fischer’s proposed franchise fee on natural gas from 3 percent to 1.5 to 2 percent. [C-J/AKN]

Evidence of a convicted murderer’s possible innocence sat buried in a case file for more than two decades. Now, a prosecutor in Brooklyn will have to answer for the mistake. [ProPublica]

The term “coal wars” once referred to bitter conflicts between coal companies and miners who sought to unionize to negotiate for higher pay and more humane working conditions. [Ronnie Ellis]

This is sure to make some Frankfort politicians a bit jealous. Pennsylvania lawmakers on Wednesday moved closer to adopting the long rifle as the official state firearm, a step already taken by four other U.S. states. [Reuters]

When teevee news does stories about people it hypes the living shit out of them. Some interesting notes about Heather French Henry in this one: the Rosemary Clooney house is now owned by them because the IRS ripped them a new one when they were trying to personally profit while seeking 501(c) status. She’s “stepping aside” from her “foundation” because it ran out of money, not because she won’t have time. The organization has never done anything, anyway, and the IRS 990s prove it. Her remarks about her new role further illustrate just how unintelligent and ill-prepared for the job she is. [WDRB]

Speaker John A. Boehner called on President Obama to support legislation offered by House Republicans for changes in the Department of Veterans Affairs. [NY Times]

Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes isn’t giving an inch in the coal wars that federal regulators have ignited in Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race this week. [WFPL]

A new paper finds that our journalists are constantly hedging on a scientifically settled issue—considerably more so than reporters in Spain. [Mother Jones]

Urban County Councilwoman Shevawn Akers pleaded not guilty Friday to a misdemeanor stemming from allegations that signatures were falsified on documents submitted for her run in the Second District Council race. [H-L]

Nearly half of Americans said the present-day wealth gap between blacks and whites is something that can be attributed to slavery, although an almost equal amount disagreed with that idea. A higher number of Americans said they believed the wealth gap is a result of the years of systemic discrimination that followed slavery’s abolition. [HuffPo]

Eating crow is never fun but that’s what Jake is doing. Help him get things squared away? If you get something out of this content, consider doing so in order to ensure that it continues. [Click Here For Details]

EPSB Hires New Attorney, Bad News For Powell

Eating crow is never fun but that’s what Jake is doing. Help him get things squared away? If you get something out of this content, consider doing so in order to ensure that it continues. [Click Here For Details]

A child of Appalachia no longer knows, as an adult, whether he still belongs. One challenge inherent in sorting out feelings about the region is acknowledging there is more than one Appalachia. [H-L]

Because we all know stamps will make you gay! Fundamentalist Christian group American Family Association is urging members not to accept any mail postmarked with the U.S. Postal Service’s newly released Harvey Milk stamp, the first U.S. stamp to feature an openly gay elected official. [HuffPo]

Staffing at Kentucky’s mine-safety agency will be cut by more than a third as a result of the General Assembly’s deep cut to the agency’s budget last month, according to a reorganization plan filed by the Beshear administration Friday. [C-J/AKN]

Heroin was once the scourge of the urban poor, but today the typical user is a young, white suburbanite, a study finds. And the path to addiction usually starts with prescription painkillers. [NPR]

Months after officials approved a law to safeguard against chemical spills, West Virginia industry groups want some requirements delayed and some storage tanks exempt from more regulation. [WKYT]

Large ocean waves can travel through sea ice for hundreds of kilometres before their oscillations are finally dampened, scientists have shown. [BBC]

Most people could be more bored to tears about the latest EPA regulation announcement. Because they’re comfortable paying a few extra bucks a month in order to not die. [CN|2]

The birth rate among U.S. teens and young women dropped to record lows last year, while the rate among older women hit highs not seen in a half century, according to government statistics released on Thursday. [Reuters]

The Education Professional Standards Board hired a new prosecuting attorney. [External PDF]

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) said Thursday that if Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to block the Obama administration’s carbon limits for new power plants, it can’t be through the Congressional Review Act. The GAO said that under the act, the agency can’t trigger a review on a proposed rule — the rule must first be finalized. [The Hill]

The hot gossip rolling out of Frankfort this week is that Steve Beshear appointed Heather French Henry to her new overpaid job so she could assist Alison on the campaign trail. Which is a crazy thing for Jerry Lundergan to push for, since the Henry Family Corruption is not a myth. And a P.S. about Heather’s “life’s mission”: this is just her next step because her foundation ran out of money that she never spent on veterans. [Deep Frankfort Failures]

The National Security Agency is harvesting huge numbers of images of people from communications that it intercepts through its global surveillance operations for use in sophisticated facial recognition programs, according to top-secret documents. [NY Times]

Fayette County Public Schools Budget Director Julane Mullins says she stands by the allegations made in an email she sent last week to the school board that will result in a special examination by the state auditor. [H-L]

Those with college educations, whites, females, liberals, Democrats, high-income earners, and those who seldom or never attend church were the most likely to believe that being gay or lesbian is something people are born with. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin Continues To Be Huge Embarrassment

Eating crow is never fun but that’s what Jake is doing. Help him get things squared away? If you get something out of this content, consider doing so in order to ensure that it continues. [Click Here For Details]

The public health clinic that has served patients for decades at 650 Newtown Pike is moving, and an $11.7 million clinic planned for Southland Drive is inching closer to construction. [H-L]

The U.S. economy contracted in the first quarter for the first time in three years as it buckled under the weight of a severe winter, but there are signs activity has since rebounded. [HuffPo]

There was no quiet before this storm. Like a rising wind ahead of an approaching front, the debate over new rules limiting carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants — to be unveiled on Monday — was in full fury this week. [C-J/AKN]

“This is a problem of immense enormity and terrible hurt,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers on Wednesday evening as his panel took the first steps toward approving a $39.2 billion budget for the Department of Homeland Security. And the Kentucky Republican chastised the White House for showing “no leadership at all” in its budget for the coming year. [Politico]

The CEO of a Kentucky-based company says he’s going to buck the coal industry’s downward trend by opening a new mine northwest of Sheridan in 2016. [WLEX18]

Billions of dollars went into creating state marektplaces, and we know about 8 million people signed up. But it’s actually still to early to declare success or failure. [NPR]

Matt Bevin has shown Kentuckians in the nearly two weeks since his sound defeat in the primary election against U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell on May 20 that he is, in fact, a sore loser. [BGDN]

Medicare spent $6.7 billion too much for office visits and other patient evaluations in 2010, according to a new report from the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. [ProPublica]

Federal prosecutors have accused 10 people of participating in a kickback scheme at an Arch Coal mine in West Virginia. [WKYT]

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proposed an edict that would bar gun shops from operating in 99.5% of the city and require video of each sale. [BBC]

If you missed it Friday: Seven Counties Services, thanks to a bankruptcy judge, finally gets to leave Kentucky Retirement Systems. [The ‘Ville Voice]

U.S. prosecutors have opened criminal and civil probes into at least 15 banks and payment processors as part of a wide-ranging consumer fraud investigation, according to documents released on Thursday by a congressional committee. [Reuters]

Just in case you need a good example of Jack Brammer’s fluff. Spoiler alert: Brammer is someone the Henrys often talk about as being a friend and someone Steve always believed would spin for him. [H-L]

The number of measles cases in the U.S. is at the highest it’s been in 20 years, government health officials reported on May 29. [HuffPo]

Another Look At What HFH Doesn't Actually Do

In light of Heather French Henry being appointed by Steve Beshear to head the Department of Veterans Affairs, it’s time to dig in…

On July 22 last year we examined, you know, what she hasn’t done for veterans. By looking at the funds her “foundation” — Heather Renee French Foundation For Veterans Inc — raises and how it (she) spends its (her) money.

You’ll be outraged when you look back at the numbers:


  • $4,056 to Heather for “Contributions to employee benefit plans & deferred compensation” – despite declaring: “THE ORGANIZATION DID NOT, DURING THE YEAR, RECEIVE ANY FUNDS, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, TO PAY PREMIUMS ON A PERSONAL BENEFIT CONTRACT.”
  • $4,173 telephone and internet
  • $1,040 on travel, meals, lodging
  • $555 on office supplies and expenses
  • $7,000 on book settlement (when her publisher sued her and she put the financial responsibility on her non-profit)
  • $65 on bank service charges
  • $609 on misc


  • $3,952 on costs of goods sold with a gross profit of -$1,711
  • $19,369 on travel, lodging, meetings
  • $562 made in donations
  • $631 on office supplies and expenses
  • $1,235 on telephone and internet
  • $60,000 on book settlement
  • $8,274 on promotion
  • $2,435 on other


  • $7,527 to Heather for “Contributions to employee benefit plans & deferred compensation”
  • She claimed $53,102 in book inventory and $50,000 “due from Future Fund”
  • $12,179 on travel, lodging, meetings
  • $3,500 made in donations
  • $9,646 on office supplies and expenses
  • $4,498 on telephone and internet
  • $16 on misc


  • $6,498 to Heather for “Contributions to employee benefit plans & deferred compensation”
  • $1,260 for books purchased
  • $3,856 on telephone
  • $3,719 on contract services
  • $19,067 on reimbursed expenses
  • $887 on postage
  • $3,268 on misc
  • $6,231 on food, travel, meetings
  • $1,754 on internet & website
  • $3,047 on supplies


  • $11,031 to Heather for “Contributions to employee benefit plans & deferred compensation”
  • $13,470 on travel
  • $4,419 on telephone
  • $1,924 on internet & e-mail
  • $5,598 on conferences, meetings
  • $2,645 on supplies
  • $1,599 on office expense
  • $7,243 on books
  • $874 on other


  • $40,488 on supplies
  • $8,253 on service expenses
  • $5,785 on utilities
  • $638 on misc
  • $650 on contributions
  • $17,686 on contracted services


  • $24,002 on salaries and waves
  • $26,731 on supplies
  • $1,231 on travel
  • $28,781 on service expenses
  • $5,555 on utilities (remember, she runs this out of her home)
  • $5,000 on veterans support


  • $11,518 on salaries and waves
  • $10,555 on supplies
  • $498 on postage and shipping
  • $5,171 on travel
  • $18,724 on service expenses


  • $3,774 on supplies
  • $50,000 on printing and publications
  • $13,105 on conferences, conventions and meetings
  • $11,262 on service expenses
  • $131 on misc expenses


  • $719 on supplies
  • $2,574 on travel
  • $6,927 on service expenses

And even more outraged when you see her 2012 numbers from the organization’s 990:

  • $6,605 in contributions, gifts, grants, and similar amounts received
  • She had a net asset balance of $50,768 at the beginning of the year and a net balance of $48,939 at the end of the year. $2,242 in cash, savings and investments at the beginning of the year, $1,509 at the end of the year. Meaning SHE SPENT NOTHING ON VETERANS! AGAIN!
  • NEGATIVE $667 (-$667) in gross profits from sales of inventory
  • Total of $5,938 in revenue
  • She spent $415 on professional fees and other payments to independent contractors
  • Spent $2,457 on occupancy, rent utilities and maintenance
  • $4,895 on “other expenses”

Those other expenses:

  • $429 in gross receipts
  • $1,096 in “goods sold”
  • Of those big numbers above, $48,526 of it was inventory at the beginning of the year. Her books that the foundation bought from her/her publisher. She claims $47,430 worth of inventory at the end of the year.
  • Spent $821 on travel, meals, lodging
  • $205 on interest
  • $3,869 on “misc”

Unlike in previous years, it appears she’s stopped using the foundation to pay herself directly. Appears. Because of such a long-established history of behavior, there’s no one in their right mind who believes much has changed.

For your convenience, feel free to download PDF copies of the foundation 990s:

Offensive and disgusting that Steve Beshear thought it would be a good idea to put this woman in charge of the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs during the VA scandal. Even more offensive that he didn’t appoint one of the THOUSANDS OF ACTUAL VETERANS in Kentucky. Instead, he selected some two-bit shyster who can’t spell her way out of the fifth grade. A woman who has… well.. you already know.

This is why Kentucky can’t have nice things.

Steve Beshear Proves He's Total Embarrassment

It’s not enough that Steve Beshear and his handlers are vindictive, shitty people. It’s not enough that they’re anti-gay bigots.

It’s that they force their shenanigans on to those who can least afford it.

Here’s the headline:

Gov. Beshear Appoints Heather French Henry to Head Veterans Affairs

From the press release:

Governor Steve Beshear announced today that Heather French Henry, of Louisville, will be Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs (KDVA), replacing Ken Lucas, who’s been asked by the Governor to oversee to completion the construction of the state’s fourth veterans nursing home in Radcliff.


The Governor’s appointment of Henry is part of his ongoing commitment to help Kentucky veterans and their families.

“Heather is highly motivated and has vast experience assisting and creating programs for veterans throughout the Commonwealth and the nation,” Gov. Beshear said. “As the department’s new commissioner, she will continue our mission to raise awareness and offer services to our veterans.”

Henry, a longtime advocate for veterans affairs, started the Heather French Foundation for Veterans in December 1999, shortly after being crowned Miss America 2000 in September 1999. Her foundation partners with public and private organizations to assist veterans and their families.

Henry, who will start as commissioner July 1, has received numerous awards and recognitions for her work and advocacy on behalf of veteran’s issues. These include: the Patriot Award from USA Cares; the Americanism Award from Veterans of Foreign Wars; the Humanitarian Award from AMVETS; the American Patriot Award from NCOA (Non-Commissioned Officers Association) and the Martha Washington Spirit Award from the Military Order of the Purple Heart Ladies Auxiliary.

In 2001, the U.S. Congress passed the Heather French Henry Homeless Veterans Assistance Act, bipartisan legislation focusing on the eradication of homelessness among veterans nationwide, especially homeless female veterans.

“I greatly appreciate Gov. Beshear’s confidence in my experience as a national veterans advocate and look forward to continuing my work as the commissioner to serve the veterans of the Commonwealth and their families,” Henry said. “Honoring our veterans has been and will always be my life’s mission, and I am honored that I can serve them in this way.”

Henry has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning.

As commissioner, Henry will be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the department, as well as the coordination of 18 statewide field office locations, health care outreach and cemetery services.

Mind you, this shyster of a woman hasn’t spent a cent from her “non-profit” on veterans but she has personally benefited.

She was sued for defrauding her publisher and had to settle like woah. She used funds from her non-profit to pay the settlement, of course.

She was involved with her husband when the IRS went after the Rosemary Clooney House. Because she and her husband were personally profiting from it BY LIVING IN IT. While claiming it was a 501 entity.

Remember that 4,000-page report from the Kentucky State Police Special Investigations Unit that led to her husband being convicted for campaign finance fraud? She was all over it. It’s public record. It involved state accounts, federal accounts, charitable accounts and more involving millions of dollars. In fact, those fuckers had to forfeit hundreds of thousands!

And let’s not forget the KSP being forced to babysit her children when Henry was lieutenant governor to using state government to run her wedding. Or that she has her “gowns” made in flipping China.

This is a disgraceful action on the part of Steve Beshear.

Shameful and offensive.

Now she’s back to living off the taxpayers.

Gov. Beshear Didn’t Make This Craziness Happen

We’re warming up to Steve Beshear more and more lately. How crazy is that?

And here, thanks to a press release, we learn that it was good old boy Paul Patton who made the request (pre-scandals) to name a taxpayer-funded stretch of roadway for Heather French Henry:

In October 2000, then-Gov. Paul Patton, at the request of the Mason County Fiscal Court, named the loop for Heather French Henry after she was crowned the 2000 Miss America in September 1999 — the first Kentuckian to win the competition.

“I am humbled and wish to share this honor with the people of Maysville, my family, teachers, coaches, local civic and community leaders and members of my church,” said Henry. “I hope this reflects positively on the support and encouragement they have given to me over the years to continue to make a difference for our veterans and for the state of Kentucky.”

After winning the Miss America title, Henry established the Heather French Foundation for Veterans, which advocates for veteran issues including homelessness, housing and health care. She has also written numerous children’s books covering various educational topics.

“This honor is very befitting for one of our most outstanding citizens. As Miss America, she was a great ambassador for Kentucky and put our state positively in the national spotlight,” said Sen. Walter Blevins, of Morehead. “After completing her reign, she has continued to work for the betterment of the Commonwealth, especially focusing on veteran issues. I am proud to be a part of today’s celebration recognizing our very own Heather French Henry.”

Patton’s folks tell us that he had no idea what a flustercuck things were at the time. Understandable.

But it’s time for a few moments of reality:

Walter Blevins is crazier than a shithouse rat. Let’s get real. We’re surprised the man can tie his own shoes. You folks familiar with all the things he allowed his ex-wife to get away with?

Heather’s foundation? Well, we’ve covered that pretty well.

The books? Cubbie Blue. Sued. Settlement.

But at least Steve Beshear didn’t make this request.