Bevin Isn’t The Pension Savior After All

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Kentucky’s unfunded public pension liability has grown from $30.5 billion to $32.6 billion, a debt that threatens to undermine every other service the state provides, an oversight panel was told Monday. [John Cheves]

Democrats on the House Oversight Committee on Monday asked the committee’s chairman, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), to look into President-elect Donald Trump’s financial entanglements and make sure he’s not breaking the law. [HuffPo]

Gunmen exchanged about 20 shots at an annual Thanksgiving Day football event, thrusting Louisville past its homicide record and into the national spotlight. [C-J/AKN]

The Republican Party long insisted that the troubles of the inner city were cultural—but rather than apply the same logic to struggling blue-collar communities, Trump blamed their problems on external forces. [The Atlantic]

The Berea Tourism Commission approved a work addendum in order to pay Jones Signs, a company that recently installed way-finding signage around the city, an additional $68,402.10. [Richmond Register]

Senate Republicans are wary of making a historic move to nix the filibuster despite growing pressure from conservatives. [The Hill]

The generosity of northeast Kentuckians is proven every Christmas season through donations to the Needy Families Fund, a holiday tradition for more than a quarter of a century. [Ashland Independent]

Democrat Hillary Clinton’s campaign will take part in a recount of Wisconsin votes in the U.S. presidential race, an effort Republican winner Donald Trump called “ridiculous” on Saturday. [Reuters]

The Rowan County Fiscal Court voted to move forward with the harm reduction program within the community last week, however the vote wasn’t unanimous. [The Morehead News]

You don’t get a pat on the back for ratcheting down from rabid after exploiting that very radicalism to your advantage. Unrepentant opportunism belies a staggering lack of character and caring that can’t simply be vanquished from memory. [NY Times]

The Barren-Metcalfe County Emergency Communications Center’s governing board received “a standard clean, unqualified” opinion on an audit of its financial statement for the 2016 fiscal year. [Glasgow Daily Times]

How racially resentful working-class whites fled the Democratic Party – before Donald Trump. During the Obama presidency, racial attitudes became more strongly connected to whether whites identified as Democratic or Republican. But those stronger connections were most visible among whites with less formal education. Sorry, Adam Edelen, your bullshit talking point about economics is dead in the water. [WaPo]

Louisville’s streets were quiet on Thanksgiving Day 150 years ago. Few people were out, in part because the mud on Nov. 29, 1866, was so deep, and the city’s street crossings already were “the worst in the country,” wrote the Daily Courier. [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump falsely claimed on Sunday that “millions of people” voted illegally in the 2016 presidential election. In a conference call with reporters on Monday, Trump’s campaign team did not produce any evidence to support that allegation. But the strangest thing about the president-elect’s claim isn’t that there is zero evidence to support it — it’s that Trump, who has turned away daily intelligence briefings since winning the election, took time out of his day to repeat a rumor that initially spread because of one guy on Twitter. [HuffPo]

Gobble Gobble, Bevin’s Still Delusional

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Kentucky’s dentists and optometrists asked Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration not to remove dental and vision coverage from basic Medicaid benefits. Visits to the dentist and eye doctor are often the first step in identifying more serious health conditions, including diabetes, they say. [H-L]

Exactly a week after winning the presidential election, Donald Trump took time out to meet with Indian business partners and his three eldest children at Trump Tower in Manhattan. [HuffPo]

All hat, no cattle. Community members pressed Kentucky Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt for clear answers Monday about how the state and Jefferson County Public Schools plan to ensure equity is at the forefront of education reform efforts in the age of the new Every Student Succeeds Act. [C-J/AKN]

This won’t be news to you if you haven’t been living under a rock. Sucks for the Whiny Ass Titty Baby-Elect. An actor from the Broadway hit “Hamilton” is responding to President-elect Donald Trump’s claim that the show’s cast “harassed” Vice President-elect Mike Pence. [The Hill]

Preparation for Thanksgiving family dinners can be a daunting task. But what if your “family” numbers 1,600? [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump agreed on Friday to pay $25 million to settle fraud lawsuits over his Trump University real estate seminars, in what New York’s attorney general called a “stunning reversal” for the U.S. president-elect. [Reuters]

The Thanksgiving holiday week is a busy time for members of the Rosedale Baptist Church. [Richmond Register]

The attacks may have seemed like just a fleeting, perverse twist on RINO (“Republican in name only”), but in fact they were something far more ominous—the stirrings of a loosely knit extremist movement soon more widely known as the “alt-right.” [Mother Jones]

Rowan County Fiscal Court passed a resolution last Tuesday asking the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to order a full Environmental Impact Study for the repurposing of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline. [The Morehead News]

By the time Richard B. Spencer, the leading ideologue of the alt-right movement and the final speaker of the night, rose to address a gathering of his followers on Saturday, the crowd was restless. [NY Times]

Three findings were listed by the state auditor after reviewing Metcalfe County Sheriff Rondal Shirley’s 2015 financial statement. [Glasgow Daily Times]

President-elect Donald Trump’s charitable foundation has admitted to the IRS that it violated a legal prohibition against “self-dealing,” which bars nonprofit leaders from using their charity’s money to help themselves, their businesses or their families. That admission was contained in the Donald J. Trump Foundation’s IRS tax filings for 2015. [WaPo]

Matt Bevin says he spoke by phone with Donald Trump and came away even more convinced that Kentucky has an ally in the president-elect. [H-L]

If you want to know why the unabashedly racist and Nazi-sympathizing “alt-right” movement is making a mark on the Trump administration and beyond, look no further than Tila Tequila and her white nationalist friend, Richard Spencer. [HuffPo]

There’s A State Supreme Court Race

Justice Mary Noble of Lexington is retiring from the Kentucky Supreme Court just as it’s wading into several high-profile battles over the limits of Republican Gov. Matt Bevin’s executive power in areas such as university budget cuts and replacing state boards. [John Cheves]

GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump appeared to question the legitimacy of Barack Obama’s presidency once again on Saturday, referring to the president in air quotes. [HuffPo]

She had no prior record, but Alexandra Arnold, 21, of Carrollton is serving 10 years in prison for manufacturing methamphetamine, first offense. [C-J/AKN]

A progressive advocacy group is launching an advertising campaign accusing Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who also is the Republican vice-presidential nominee, of allowing voter suppression after state police raided the offices of a voter registration program aimed at signing up African Americans. [WaPo]

Eastern Kentucky University released a statement Friday verifying that numbers contained in an Oct. 3 Faculty Senate resolution denouncing changes to employees’ health insurance plans were correct. [Richmond Register]

When an 8-year old boy showed up at his school’s clinic in rural Haiti with a low-grade fever and abdominal pain, he was told he had typhoid and given medicine to treat it. [NPR]

Regina Sutton was a struggling single mother with three growing boys, a grueling job as a high school cook and no prospects for anything better in the future. [Ashland Independent]

President Barack Obama ripped Donald Trump here Friday as a man who’s embraced an attack on the “global elite” only after failing to be accepted as a member of the global elite himself, attacking the Republican nominee for running an anti-American campaign with paper-thin support that’s all about InfoWars.com conspiracy theories. [Politico]

This Kelley Paul thing will make your eyes roll back in your head. [The Morehead News]

The second week of October will likely be remembered as the moment when the 2016 presidential campaign went careening off the rails and spinning into the void. [BBC]

Look who crawled out of his D.C. dungeon to visit Kentucky. As he walked through student work areas at the Barren County Area Technology Center, U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie inhaled deeply. [Glasgow Daily Times]

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, a proponent of strong financial regulation, turned up the heat on the country’s top securities regulator on Friday, urging President Barack Obama to fire Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White. [Reuters]

The Woodford County Economic Development Authority took steps Friday toward bringing a natural gas line to the Midway industrial park so the county won’t lose a company expected to provide more than 200 jobs. [H-L]

After a week of repeated allegations that Donald Trump sexually assaulted women at various stages of his life, top Republican donors and even some rank-and-file lawmakers are urging the party to fully cordon itself off from its presidential nominee. [HuffPo]

Let’s Relive Bevin’s High Court Loss

A Fayette district judge’s ruling on a 2016 amendment to the drunken-driving law has prosecutors and defense attorneys battling in court. [H-L]

Shutting down for-profit detention facilities would hurt Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s ability to do its job, agency director Sarah Saldaña said Thursday amid a review over whether the government should do just that. [HuffPo]

In a ruling that has as much impact on state politics as the state purse, the Kentucky Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Gov. Matt Bevin violated his power last spring in unilaterally ordering funding cuts to state universities. [C-J/AKN]

Warplanes launched some of the heaviest air strikes yet on rebel-held areas of Aleppo on Friday after the Russian-backed Syrian army declared an offensive to fully capture Syria’s biggest city, killing off any hope of reviving a ceasefire. [Reuters]

The four-year graduation rate at Eastern Kentucky University has nearly doubled in the past seven years. [Richmond Register]

If you notice the news and/or aren’t that guy in Plato’s favorite cave, you’ve probably already suffered rage-induced anaphylaxis while reading about the cool 600 percent price increase for EpiPens in recent years. [ProPublica]

Thursday’s Kentucky Supreme Court ruling that Gov. Matt Bevin can’t reduce university funding on his own didn’t surprise many who listened to oral arguments before the court last month. [Ronnie Ellis]

On Wednesday, Donald Trump Jr. told Pittsburgh Tribune-Review he doesn’t think the Trump Organization’s international operations would be problematic if his dad were elected president. [ThinkProgress]

Barren Circuit Judge John T. Alexander has upheld the city’s January decision to fire Michael Burton, who was a Glasgow Police Department sergeant at the time. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Our team that’s been travelling across the northern US hearing from voters is now at the halfway stage – crossing the states of North Dakota and Montana. There, our North America correspondent, Aleem Maqbool has been looking at the thorny issues surrounding the oil industry and climate change, in a place that’s directly affected by both. [BBC]

On Wednesday, Kentucky legislators listened to a presentation about the benefits of medical cannabis from Don Stacy, a cancer doctor and medical liaison for pro-legalization group Alliance for Innovative Medicine. [WFPL]

Ruling on a lawsuit filed by a state’s Democratic attorney general against its Republican governor, the Kentucky Supreme Court says Gov. Matt Bevin doesn’t have the authority to unilaterally slice money out of a state university’s budget. [NPR]

In the summer of 1969, a man picking flowers along the secluded Little Shepherd Trail in Harlan County saw a body on the side of a hill, so decomposed it was hard to tell if it was a man or woman. [H-L]

Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence on Thursday said Americans should refrain from speaking about racial bias within law enforcement immediately after police shootings to help bring unity to communities like Charlotte, North Carolina, where violent protests raged this week over the police shooting of a black man. [HuffPo]

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Matt Bevin Had Another Terrible Week

A year after it began, Lexington’s needle-exchange program has collected 20,199 used needles and has given out more than 21,693 clean ones.[H-L]

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, a retired four-star general who served under three Republican presidents, slammed GOP nominee Donald Trump as a “a national disgrace” and an “international pariah,” according to his personal emails. [BuzzFeed]

The pros and cons of the Kentucky State Fair are getting a comprehensive review by a committee of the state agency that oversees the annual 11-day event in August. [C-J/AKN]

The truth behind the Kochs’ new fossil fuel PR campaign. Behind the latest Koch-funded effort to hide the impacts of fossil fuels. [ThinkProgress]

It’s fun watching the UofL Foundation cough up cash for McConnell-Bush-Trump advocates to spin the media. Facing growing scrutiny from donors and its own university, the University of Louisville Foundation is paying $11,500 a month in retainers alone for external public relations firms. [WFPL]

Donald Trump was in a tuxedo, standing next to his award: a statue of a palm tree, as tall as a toddler. It was 2010, and Trump was being honored by a charity — the Palm Beach Police Foundation — for his “selfless support” of its cause. His support did not include any of his own money. [WaPo]

WARNING! RIDICULOUS AUTOPLAY VIDEO! A group of Campbellsville residents protested outside City Hall on Monday, in response to a proposed ordinance that would regulate how citizens are allowed to address the City Council. [WAVE3]

Matt Bevin may be calling for a violent uprising if Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton is elected in November. You can’t fix this kind of bigoted stupidity. [RawStory]

The Democratic candidate for Kentucky’s 6th Congressional District Tuesday called for the impeachment of Republican Gov. Matt Bevin for saying last week that bloodshed may be necessary to preserve American ideals and system of government. [Ronnie Ellis]

Speaking at the Values Voter Summit on Saturday, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin alluded to Thomas Jefferson’s famous aphorism about the need to periodically water the tree of liberty with the blood of patriots and tyrants. [Vox]

A yearlong and extensive investigation by the Boyd County Sheriff’s Department has culminated in the indictment of six for organized crime and multiple drug charges. [Ashland Independent]

His base wants few details and fewer facts; they just want to burn it down and blame their failures on the collective other. And Donald John Trump is their demonic messiah in Oompa Loompa’s clothing. [GQ]

Democratic candidates for federal office in Kentucky criticized Gov. Matt Bevin on Tuesday for suggesting last weekend that blood might someday need to be shed if Hillary Clinton wins the presidential election, going so far as to suggest impeachment. [H-L]

If Donald Trump is elected president, will he and his family permanently sever all connections to the Trump Organization, a sprawling business empire that has spread a secretive financial web across the world? Or will Trump instead choose to be the most conflicted president in American history, one whose business interests will constantly jeopardize the security of the United States? [Newsweek]

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What The Heck, Magoffin County???

The Magoffin County Fiscal Court is a disaster.

Want a taste?

Here are the most recent audits from Frankfort:

Click here (Warning: External PDF Link) for 2013.

Some highlights:

  • These jackasses blamed the March 2012 tornado on their shenanigans
  • The county treasurer did not monitor disbursements which caused total budgeted appropriations to be over spent.
  • The fiscal court did not amend the county’s budget for unanticipated receipts.
  • The county treasurer did not present an annual settlement to the fiscal court within the time period required by state law.
  • The county treasurer did not monitor fund cash balances which caused the 911 Fund to have a negative balance.
  • The county did not maintain capital asset schedules in accordance with regulatory requirements.
  • The county’s administrative code does not address commuting mileage or the personal use of a county vehicle.
  • The fiscal court did not prepare a Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards.
  • The fiscal court lacks adequate segregation of duties over payroll.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate controls over gravel inventory.
  • The fiscal court did not follow proper procedures for timesheets.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate controls over health reimbursement accounts and flexible spending accounts.
  • County did not update insurance policies for capital asset changes.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate controls over notes receivable.

Click here (Warning: External PDF Link) for 2014.

Highlights:

  • The county did not maintain capital asset schedules in accordance with regulatory requirements.
  • The county treasurer did not present an annual settlement to the fiscal court within the time period required by state law.
  • The county treasurer did not monitor bank account cash balances which caused the road fund bank account to have a negative balance.
  • The county’s administrative code does not address commuting mileage or the personal use of a county vehicle.
  • The fiscal court did not prepare a schedule of expenditures of federal awards.
  • The fiscal court did not have insurance on a 2013 Mack truck that could not be found during a physical inventory test.
  • The fiscal court lacks adequate segregation of duties over payroll.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate internal controls over gravel inventory.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate controls over health reimbursement accounts and flexible spending accounts.
  • The fiscal court does not have adequate controls over notes receivable.

This is why Eastern Kentucky can’t have nice things.

UPDATE

Bill Estep at the H-L is now covering the $35,000 missing truck.

You Get What You Pay For, Kentucky

And this is what you paid for:

A delusional wingnut freaking out about scary brown welfare queens. (If you aren’t familiar with the welfare queen myth, fire up yer googler)

Oh, wait, this is nothing new. They just have foreign accents – so it’s super-terrifying for people like him.

Wondering what this turd burglar means by “welfare”? Well…

From the Wall Street Journal:

The main surviving Paris suspect, Salah Abdeslam, collected unemployment benefits until three weeks before the November attacks

That’s right – UNEMPLOYMENT! That’s what this guy thinks is welfare.

Spoiler alert: Unemployment insurance is something Americans pay for, Bevin.

He’s got to be the dumbest man I’ve ever met. Maybe the Kentucky Democratic Party will realize they need to be actual Democrats some day soon and people like him will be prevented from winning re-election. (Don’t hold your breath)