Poor Kentuckians Will Suffer Under Bevin

Fayette County School District officials say they have found the student responsible for a graffiti threat left in a bathroom at Edythe J. Hayes Middle School. [H-L]

One Middle East catastrophe apparently wasn’t enough for some supporters of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. So they’ve continued to try to shape policy relating to the region, offering punditry in the wake of each fresh crisis. [HuffPo]

Traveling around rural Clay County, Jennifer Gates seeks out people in need of health coverage. There are plenty of them. From the homeless veteran under a bridge to the low-paid school cafeteria cook, Gates helps them find health coverage through kynect, Kentucky’s version of the Affordable Care Act. [C-J/AKN]

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on Sunday said Donald Trump’s claim that scores of Arab-Americans cheered as the Twin Towers fell on 9/11 is unsubstantiated. [The Hill]

Members of the Housing Authority of Glasgow’s board of directors were scheduled to approve flat rent increases for the 2016 fiscal year, but action on the issue was tabled, once again. [Glasgow Daily Times]

South America’s vast Amazon region harbors one of the world’s most diverse collection of tree species, but more than half may be at risk for extinction due to ongoing deforestation to clear land for farming, ranching and other purposes, scientists say. [Reuters]

For the 16th holiday season, a local musician is helping provide for those less fortunate. Eddie Riffe organized his first food drive in 1999, when he asked those who visited the AMVETS in Ashland to donate nonperishable foods when they came to hear him perform. [Ashland Independent]

Alberta’s carbon footprint, spurred on by the tar sands industry, has been steadily growing in recent years. So when the New Democratic Party took power in a surprise victory earlier this year, environmentalists hoped it signaled a turning point for Canada’s largest oil-producing province. [ThinkProgress]

Just a little over a year ago, it was “space and shelves,” but no food was stored there. Now, the Colonel’s Cupboard helps feed the one in five Eastern Kentucky University college students who admitted to food insecurity in a study conducted just last year. [Richmond Register]

The ex-GOP House Benghazi Committee investigator who accused the panel of conducting a partisan witch hunt against Hillary Clinton filed suit Monday against the committee and Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) for wrongful termination and defamation. [Politico]

Big news in the hometown of small-minded bigot Kim Davis. A tanker carrying powder used to make concrete overturned on I-64 in Rowan County Monday morning. [The Morehead News]

A US air strike aimed at an IS checkpoint is likely to have killed four civilians, possibly including a child, the US military has said. [BBC]

What the hell is in the water in Lexington to make everyone — from the people still bickering about the election to self-hating Jim Gray — so terrible lately? [H-L]

Donald Trump approves of the way his supporters responded to a Black Lives Matter protester, reportedly beating him during a Saturday rally in Birmingham, Alabama. [HuffPo]

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More MoCo/Powell/EPSB Update Stuff

An update on this issue:

The Education Professional Standards Board, which plans to make a decision about whether to take Joshua Powell’s certifications in early February, is fighting its first subpoena in ages (maybe ever). Specifically, the new EPSB leadership is fighting to keep a transcript of Powell’s 22-day hearing secret. Never mind that Joshua Powell has repeatedly said under oath that he made recordings of the proceedings and can’t guarantee that others haven’t heard them. You know he’s shared them with his attorneys. Their contents have already been used in public court filings and hearings involving school board members.

Back story: Michelle Goins-Henry, who testified during the EPSB hearing and who is suing Powell and the Montgomery County Board of Education, obtained a subpoena to receive the transcript. The EPSB’s executive director agreed to comply and went so far as to tell her attorney it was ready to be picked up (I have the emails, so… kinda can’t deny it). Then, bam, they’re fighting in court to keep it secret. Despite promises from Goins-Henry that she’d sign documents agreeing to keep it confidential.

There’s a hearing on the 24th to discuss it.

Spoiler alert for EPSB: that transcript has already been leaked. It was spread around after October 15, the date the finished document allegedly arrived at your office. Your claim that it could cause public uproar, potentially influencing EPSB members is dead in the water. All the claims and evidence raised during the hearing? Already public. Already written about here on Page One. And the hearing would have been open to the public had Powell not asked for it to be closed.

Earlier this morning a judge ruled in EPSB’s favor — the transcript of Joshua Powell’s transcript will not have to be turned over.

He bought into EPSB’s argument that everything gets leaked to the media, with EPSB citing emails that have been turned over. But here’s another spoiler alert: WE COULD OBTAIN THEM VIA OPEN RECORDS REQUEST! Because… wait for it… emails at EPSB are subject to open records laws.

But that’s no big deal. No one should panic.

Here’s why: The judge ordered EPSB to hand over the entire Powell transcript by February 26 and he set a date to make sure it happens.

What that means: EPSB likely plans to hold Powell accountable or it wouldn’t have agreed to hand everything over. That 22-day hearing will not remain secret, as Powell desires. Every last bit of those scandals discussed during the hearing will ultimately be public.

There are all kinds of things about the EPSB case that are interesting. Here’s one: the hearing officer, during testimony, discovered additional alleged law-breaking on Powell’s part and brought it up.

There’s a hearing in Powell’s case against the board scheduled for December 15.

A hearing in Amanda Reffit’s case against Powell and the board on January 22.

Michelle Henry’s case has a status hearing for April 22, pretrial conference on August 26 and jury trial on September 26.

Jennifer Hall’s case has a status hearing scheduled for March 25.

An EPSB staffer just sent us a file that’s several hundred megabytes in size. And nearly a month ago someone gave us two large boxes of paper.

Can you guess what both are?

KDP’s Arms Flailing, Sinking, Lost Again

The American Civil Liberties Union says a Kentucky county clerk’s office should reissue altered marriage licenses even though the governor has promised to recognize them as valid. [H-L]

In the lead-up to Thursday’s House vote for tightening restrictions on Syrian refugees seeking entry into the United States, senior Democrats warned fellow members that they faced a massive backlash next fall if they didn’t support the bill. [HuffPo]

Dawn has barely broken, and Melanie Lowe is already in a hurry. She’s on her way to court. A familiar route, timed to the minute. Jericho Road to avoid the train. Burks Branch to skip the lights. She scarfs a protein bar and dials a colleague. No, she can’t cover for another public defender in juvenile court. Too many cases. [C-J/AKN]

Basically, Democrats don’t have a chance now that Matt Jones has realized it’d be dumb to run for congress. [Roll Call]

Guess he learned from weed in Ohio and maybe from the last dozen times he’s tried gambling bills. Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo pre-filed legislation that, if passed, would ensure that no business could acquire more than one horse-racing license except under special circumstances in Kentucky. [WMKY]

First-hand accounts like this won’t deter pandering bigots like Rand Paul and Matt Bevin. Until last year, I was one of 4.3 million people at the mercy of the legal immigration system, waiting for the chance to stay in the U.S. for good. [BuzzFeed]

Republican Gov.-elect Matt Bevin told a statewide gathering of county officials the crisis in state pension systems requires immediate attention and the solution will have to come from the general fund at the expense of other spending needs. [Ronnie Ellis]

Donald Trump tweeted a series of inaccurate murder statistics from the “Crime Statistics Bureau — San Francisco.” The bureau doesn’t exist and the statistics were fabricated. [ThinkProgress]

Steve Riley, one of two Republicans who have voiced their intent to be candidates for the 23rd District Kentucky House of Representatives seat, said he’s been interested in politics for a long time, but it wasn’t “the right thing” for him to be part of it before now. [Glasgow Daily Times]

When it comes to terrorism, more Americans trust Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton than the top Republican candidates in the field, according to the latest results of an ABC News/Washington Post survey released Monday. But among those who worry most about terrorism, Donald Trump is the preferred candidate. [Politico]

It took six tries but Rowan Fiscal Court on Tuesday finally passed a longevity pay scale for full-time county employees. [The Morehead News]

This Turtleman charade is certainly embarrassing for Kentucky. But it’s not as dumb as the handful of New Yorkers that constantly scream about it every chance they get in an attempt to shame Kentuckians in some bitter, vengeful rage. A Kentucky farmer has accused Animal Planet of setting a fire, damming a creek, chopping down trees, and illegally trespassing and building structures on his property during the production of the reality TV show Call of the Wildman. [Mother Jones]

Terrorist attacks like the one in Paris make me fear for America’s future. I don’t fear the terrorists so much as the reaction they prompt among America’s fearmongers and the people who listen to them. Their actions are capable of doing far more damage to this country than jihadists could ever accomplish. [Tom Eblen]

Weather-related disasters such as floods and heatwaves have occurred almost daily in the past decade, almost twice as often as two decades ago, with Asia being the hardest hit region, a U.N. report said on Monday. [HuffPo]

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Kentucky Leaders Embarrass Thinking People

They took time to write about all this but are still ignoring the dozens of scandals in Montgomery County. Powell County Superintendent Michael Tate said Saturday that school district officials contacted Kentucky State Police after investigating allegations of inappropriate conduct by members of Powell County High School’s boys basketball team. [H-L]

Rand Paul’s (R-Racist Cookie Tree) tough proposals aimed at limiting the admission of refugees in the wake of the Paris terror attacks are disappointing libertarian opinion leaders, days after a presidential debate performance in which he appeared to return to his independent roots. [HuffPo]

Wasn’t this news a few weeks back? An evangelist who organized rallies in support of Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis is planning to run for the state House of Representatives against Democratic House Majority Leader Rocky Adkins. [C-J/AKN]

We’re looking at you, Rand Paul, and the rest of the bigoted cowards this state sends to Washington. Acutely aware of the consequences to Jews who were unable to flee Nazism, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum looks with concern upon the current refugee crisis. While recognizing that security concerns must be fully addressed, we should not turn our backs on the thousands of legitimate refugees. [United States Holocaust Memorial Museum]

The Barren County School district took another step toward breaking ground on the long-awaited Red Cross Elementary School renovation at Wednesday’s special-called Board of Education and Barren County School District Finance Corp. meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Billionaire Donald Trump continues to dominate the polls and drive the debate in the Republican presidential nomination, staying a step ahead of his competitors on the issues of immigration, border security and the Syrian refugee crisis. [BBC]

The Boyd County Fiscal Court spent three hours in closed session trying to “fine tune” an agreement regarding future operations of the embattled Big Run Landfill. [Ashland Independent]

As President Obama tries to save his plan to shield some five million people from deportation, immigration activists have been marching and planning more demonstrations to support him. [NPR]

A racially-motivated threat found in a Madison Central High School boys’ bathroom stall Thursday has many parents upset, not so much because of the threat’s contents, but because they were not notified. [Richmond Register]

In recent days, presidential candidates and even the American Medical Association have griped about rising drug prices, pointing to brand-name blockbusters with splashy ad campaigns. [ProPublica]

The Rowan County Board of Education Tuesday discussed a plan to make changes to the district’s bullying policy. The changes deal primarily with cyber-bullying or harassment via social media and the Internet, hazing, and other forms of harassment. [The Morehead News]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Still Has No Health Care Alternative) is making a bull rush at the conservatives running for president who are withholding support from an ObamaCare repeal package that they feel doesn’t go far enough. [The Hill]

Fayette County had a higher rate of children living in foster care from 2012 to 2014 than the state rate, according to child well-being rankings released recently by Kentucky Youth Advocates. [H-L]

Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson said Saturday that he wants to expand the government’s surveillance operations aimed at potential terrorist threats, even beyond tracking American Muslims as rivalDonald Trump has suggested. [HuffPo]

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