A Scandal Begins To Unfold In Rowan

The Executive Branch Ethics Commission has fined a one-time state mine inspector $4,000 for accepting bribes from a former lawmaker. [H-L]

There’s a reason Donald Trump’s be-very-afraid acceptance speech resonated with his supporters. [HuffPo]

Wanna see Scott Jennings fall into an unbearable tirade about “liberal thought police”? It’s your lucky day. Jennings went on for paragraph after paragraph blaming liberals for daring hold Doug Cobb accountable for the heinous, disgusting, homophobic things the man has said. And, of course, Jennings even whitewashed that by ignoring the impact on the LGBT community entirely. If you whitewash and excuse homophobia, you’re a homophobe. Liberal thought police? More like Whiny Ass Titty Baby Republican. [C-J/AKN]

What kind of first gentleman would Bill Clinton be? That’s the question on the minds of many as Hillary Clinton seeks to become the first woman to ever hold the Oval Office. [The Hill]

East Kentucky Power Cooperative has filed an application with the Kentucky Public Service Commission to build a 60-acre solar energy facility in Clark County. [Winchester Sun]

David Duke, a former leader of the white supremacist Ku Klux Klan, launched his candidacy on Friday for the U.S. Senate from Louisiana, saying white people are threatened in America and that he hears echoes of his views in Donald Trump’s rhetoric. [Reuters]

On Monday, a court will hear arguments over the legality of some electronic betting machines that base outcomes on horse races that have already taken place. [WFPL]

The leadership of the religious right once looked like a promising stronghold for the Never Trump movement, a bastion of the GOP deeply at odds with a man who is heretical on many of the political and personal values the country’s most prominent Christian leaders hold dear. [Politico]

A dismembered body was found in a container floating in the Green River in Hart County on Saturday, according to a press release from the Kentucky State Police Post 3 in Bowling Green. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Ranchers near the Mexican border see smugglers and sometimes find bodies, but they favor a different approach to illegal immigration from Donald J. Trump’s wall. [NY Times]

An Office of Education Accountability investigation has found Rowan County Schools Supt. Marvin Moore and Rowan County Senior High School Principal Ray Ginter “violated law and policy” by not investigating complaints of hazing and bullying in the Vikings football program, according to its report July 8. [The Morehead News]

DONALD J. TRUMP, until now a Republican problem, this week became a challenge the nation must confront and overcome. Mr. Trump has nothing positive to offer, only scapegoats and dark conspiracy theories. [WaPo]

Estill County Judge-Executive Wallace Taylor was critical Tuesday of the state’s conduct in regard to the illegal dumping of out-of-state radioactive waste at an Estill landfill. [H-L]

Hillary Clinton made her first appearance with vice presidential pick, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), hailing him for being extremely qualified for the job and offering a stark contrast to Donald Trump and his VP choice. [HuffPo]

Throwing Water On The Comer Gremlin

Programs allowing intravenous drug users to exchange dirty syringes for clean ones are spreading in Kentucky as communities confront growing heroin abuse and concerns over the potential for disease outbreaks caused by addicts sharing needles. [H-L]

Nice to see media finally start covering what we’ve been reporting about Jamie Comer’s hemp mess for a year. Also nice to see Ryan Quarles squirm because he and his partner in Republican spin, Tres Watson, are in the hot seat and can’t find their way out of it. But it’s not as fun as knowing they’re in bed with Jonathan Miller, who has his hand YET AGAIN in something you’ll roll your eyes at. If he’s not taking advantage of West Liberty, he’s grifting on something else. [BG Daily News]

Watching the Republican Party of Kentucky stand behind racist bigot Donald Trump is entertaining and terrifying at the same time. Of course Kelly Knight supports a bigot and it’s hilarious to watch Nate Haney hitch his wagon to racism and xenophobia. His backward, true colors are shining through. [C-J/AKN]

Earlier this year, scientists were puzzled by a widespread die-off that seemed to plague over 17,000 acres of mangroves along Australia’s northeastern and northern coastlines. Now, a scientist from James Cook University has confirmed that the die-off is likely a product of unusually dry weather and climate change. [ThinkProgress]

The city of Edmonton will be adopting ordinances regarding the regulation of packaged alcohol sales, the setting of alcohol license fees, as well as permit fees. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Back in January, as the Supreme Court was preparing for its most important abortion case in a generation, some four dozen social scientists submitted a brief explaining why they believed key portions of Texas law HB2 should be struck down. [ProPublica]

After more than a year-long investigation and an indictment by a Rowan County Grand Jury, the Rowan County Sheriff’s Department says they have shut down a potentially statewide pill operation. [The Morehead News]

President Obama on Wednesday vented his frustration over persistent tensions between law enforcement and minority communities following a nearly four-hour meeting with representatives from both groups. [The Hill]

The panel to screen police chief candidates has two finalists from a field of nine, and city commissioners will shortly receive information about them, Richmond City Manager Richard Thomas said Tuesday. [Richmond Register]

As he has prepared to be named the Republican nominee for president, Donald Trump has not read any biographies of presidents. Trump has no shortage of strong opinions even about books he has not read. [WaPo]

Four of the eight candidates vying for seats on the Ashland Board of City Commissioners spoke to potential voters Tuesday at Boyd County Republican Party headquarters. [Ashland Independent]

Remember Republican Brandon DUI Smith? Looks like the appeals court just choked one of his latest schemes with a biomass plant in Eastern Kentucky. Smith is another one who relies on Tres Watson’s spin but isn’t getting much of it this week due to the RNC Racist Circle You-Know-What. [WFPL]

A week after a secularist foundation warned public school officials against taking kids to the newly opened Noah’s Ark, the attraction’s creator offered a new incentive: $1 admission for every public school student on a school-sponsored field trip and free admission for their teachers. [H-L]

Valarie Honeycutt Spears spent more time on this story about Rowan County being a hot mess of awful than she did on the entire three years of the Montgomery County nightmare. Bonus points: She relied heavily on commentary from Ed Massey, the guy who ditched Joshua Powell. And I told you Marvin Moore was a disaster. [More H-L]

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No One Believes Bevin Was Unaware

Kinda like that time he claimed he didn’t attend a cockfighting rally and then video footage of him speaking at the rally emerged. Matt Bevin distanced himself Wednesday from the removal of former first lady Jane Beshear’s name from the Capitol Education Center on the grounds of the Capitol. [H-L]

Former Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann (R) returned to the spotlight this week with an unusual definition of “religious liberty.” Apparently, it’s a land where people of all faiths can come together and say “Merry Christmas.” [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin said Wednesday that Donald Trump is “absolutely” qualified to serve as president of the United States. [C-J/AKN]

Republicans crafting a party platform in Cleveland quietly voted Monday in favor of building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, ratifying one of presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump’s most controversial proposals. [The Hill]

Saying Kentucky badly needs a well-trained work force, Gov. Matt Bevin announced Wednesday the state is accepting applications from educational institutions, businesses and industry and community leaders for innovative work force development projects. [Ronnie Ellis]

CIA Director John Brennan said on Wednesday he would resign if the next president ordered his agency to resume waterboarding suspected militants, an apparent reference to comments by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump embracing the banned interrogation method. [Reuters]

Recent intense rain storms and flooding events — like the deadly flooding last month that killed more than 20 in West Virginia and left hundreds more homeless — may not have a direct link to climate change, but the heating of the planet’s surface and ocean temperatures is a factor, according to Dr. Eungul Lee, assistant professor of geography at West Virginia University. [Richmond Register]

The Houston cases shed light on a disturbing possibility: that wrongful convictions are most often not isolated acts of misconduct by the authorities but systemic breakdowns — among judges and prosecutors, defense lawyers and crime labs. [ProPublica]

After 26 years of service in law enforcement, Morehead Police Chief Dave Sexton is hanging up his hat and badge at the end of this month. [The Morehead News]

U.S. coal production is expected to take a major hit through 2040. This will happen whether the court-embattled Clean Power Plan — which would reduce carbon emissions from energy plants — is implemented or not, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). [ThinkProgress]

Kentucky law says that for the Glasgow Electric Plant Board to be sold, that board of directors would have to initiate the process and send a resolution to the city council. If the council then approved it, it would be posed as a specific question on the ballot in the next general election for voters to decide. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Alton Sterling, the black man whose point-blank shooting by white police set off a fresh round of national protest against police aggression against black people, was born and raised in this impoverished and racially divided Louisiana state capital and barely knew a life without police in it. [WaPo]

“Defies reason” is how a circuit judge described the Bevin administration’s claim that Planned Parenthood was illegally providing abortions in Louisville. [H-L]

A man in a full-body mosquito costume trolled Senate Republicans on Wednesday by distributing insect repellent outside of their hearing on the Zika virus. [HuffPo]

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The Bevin Crew: Worse Than Fletcherites

Just a reminder that it was MATT BEVIN who decided to take no criminal action in the radioactive waste scandal in Estill County. [H-L]

As he heads for the Republican convention in Cleveland next week, Donald Trump’s campaign infrastructure remains severely underdeveloped. In some places it appears to be non-existent. [HuffPo]

At a recent fundraiser for a Republican candidate, Senate Majority Caucus Chairman Dan Seum was speaking and went to turn over the microphone to state Rep. Phil Moffett, of Louisville. In his introductory remarks, Seum called Moffett Kentucky’s “next speaker of the House.” [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump says he could have made a deal to stop the Civil War. This is guy is an Amway salesman in the worst way. [Time]

Matt Bevin on Wednesday vigorously denied allegations by a Democratic lawmaker that Bevin tried to bully him after the lawmaker refused to switch parties at Bevin’s request last December. In fairness, Sinnette IS a hillbilly. That’s not a negative thing and pent up white guys need to own it. But no one believes Bevin. [Ronnie Ellis]

The House Intelligence Committee on Friday released 28 previously classified pages from a 2002 congressional investigation into the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. [The Hill]

Liberty Counsel is announcing that the federal Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has granted Clerk Kim Davis’ motion to vacate a federal district court’s injunctions against her and dismiss her pending appeals. [The Morehead News]

President Barack Obama on Wednesday said more must be done to build trust that police violence against blacks and Hispanics will be properly investigated. [Reuters]

After an election was held Tuesday evening in the Glasgow High School library, Glasgow Independent Schools will add Justin Kirkpatrick to the superintendent screening committee as a minority parent representative. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Cleveland jails are being emptied and its courts are staying open until 1 a.m. in case of mass arrests. Riot gear, handcuffs, body cameras — police equipment that cost tens of millions of dollars — are ready, and more than 70 law enforcement and government agencies are on alert. [WaPo]

Breathitt County is going wet. Voters Tuesday chose to allow alcohol sales in the county, 58 percent to 42 percent. [WYMT]

During a CNN town hall last night, a student named Zachary Marcone asked House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) how he can morally justify his support for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. [ThinkProgress]

How to know the RNC is a train wreck and desperate for speakers… Ralph Alvarado got a primetime spot for Wednesday. He’ll sound a little slick to outsiders but once they poke around his voting history, his hemp fun and general backwardness, he’ll end up being yet another person of color the Republican Party is so fond of objectifying and he’ll be too thick to realize it. [H-L]

In a rare instance of bipartisanship and compromise in Congress, the Senate on Wednesday passed legislation by a 92-2 vote that addresses the opioid epidemic. [HuffPo]

Estill County Landfill Nightmare Update

Check this press release from Andy Beshear’s office:

After conducting an exhaustive four-month investigation, the Office of the Attorney General has determined there is insufficient evidence to seek criminal charges in the disposal of radioactive waste at the Blue Ridge Landfill in Estill County, Attorney General Andy Beshear announced today.

While the office determined it could not pursue criminal charges, it believes the actions by Advanced TENORM Services and its owners violate civil law, Beshear said.

“Because of these flagrant violations and reckless disregard for the safety of the community, my office sought the necessary statutory consent from the Cabinet for Health and Family Services to pursue damages and penalties to the fullest extent of the law,” Beshear said. “The cabinet declined our request, but has stated it plans to pursue such penalties on its own.”

AG investigators reviewed hundreds of documents and held multiple interviews with state officials and with individuals directly involved in the disposal at the landfill of sludge from the oil and gas industry that contained Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials or TENORM waste.

Beshear said his office will provide any support requested by the cabinet from his office’s four-month investigation.

“As attorney general, protecting Kentucky families is my top priority,” he said. “I want to therefore reassure our citizens that despite the inability to pursue criminal charges, my office encourages the cabinet to levy the harshest civil penalties available under Kentucky law against those responsible in this troubling case.”

Translation: They wanted to pursue charges but MATT BEVIN decided not to.

What was that, again, about Bevin caring about Kentucky? About transparency? About doing the right thing?

It Seems Everyone But Matt Bevin Understands Medicaid Expansion

A secular foundation has contacted hundreds of public schools in Kentucky to warn them against taking field trips to the Ark Encounter, the new amusement park featuring a 500-foot replica of Noah’s Ark and a belief that the world is only 6,000 years old. [H-L]

The GOP on Tuesday successfully drafted a platform ― a statement of its core values and principles ― but not before some last-minute drama played out behind the scenes over its refusal to moderate its tone toward lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals. [HuffPo]

Our favorite thing about Matt Bevin is just how straight up stupid the man is. Ernie Fletcher on his worst day, despite his corrupt staffers, was 100 times more intelligent than Bevin. So watching this train wreck is exciting. Next thing you know, you’re gonna hear that the Lt. Governor is being driven around in a luxury vehicle that was seized as part of a civil asset forfeiture or something because she and her boss are straight out of the movie Idiocracy. [C-J/AKN]

Following reporting by ProPublica and NPR and an investigation by his staff, Sen. Charles Grassley introduces the American Red Cross Transparency Act. [ProPublica]

Nat Maysey, who had his arm severed in a workplace accident on June 6, was visited by Michael Eatmon and Greg Wheeler on Thursday night in his room at the University of Louisville Hospital. After Maysey’s arm was severed, Eatmon used a belt to make a tourniquet and Wheeler searched the factory to find ice for Maysey’s severed arm. [Glasgow Daily Times]

A January study published in the journal Health Affairs showed that one year after Medicaid expansion, the number of Kentuckians who reported trouble paying medical bills declined by nearly 13 percentage points. Those skipping prescribed medications because it cost too much decreased by almost 11 points. And people receiving ongoing care for a chronic illness rose by more than 10 points. [Politico]

The highly successful Hazard Community and Technical College’s offering, “Electrical Lineman/Utility Operator Program,” received the Outstanding Workforce Development Award from the Community Colleges of Appalachia. [Hazard Herald]

The chant erupts in a college auditorium in Washington, as admirers of a conservative internet personality shout down a black protester. It echoes around the gym of a central Iowa high school, as white students taunt the Hispanic fans and players of a rival team. It is hollered by a lone motorcyclist, as he tears out of a Kansas gas station after an argument with a Hispanic man and his Muslim friend. [NY Times]

Some surgeons at University Hospital say a staff shortage is “putting patients in danger.” [WDRB]

For a party that pretentiously parades around with pocket Constitutions, it was funny seeing the Republican standard-bearer betray his ignorance of the most foundational of American documents: “Not only will I stand up for Article I, I’ll stand up for Article II, Article 12 [sic], you name it, of the Constitution.” You name it! Because Donald Trump certainly can’t. [The Hill]

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture is planning a second public forum on the state’s plan to protect pollinators such as honey bees. [WLKY]

They stood in a line, clasping hands as a choir sang, Democrat and Republican, black and white, politician and cop. Led by President Barack Obama and his predecessor George W. Bush, they honored the five Dallas policemen slain last week and urged Americans to rise above racial divides and reject despair. [Reuters]

If you worry the Creation Museum and its new Noah’s Ark theme park will cause outsiders to think Kentuckians are a bunch of anti-science rubes, at least take comfort in this: Lexington was home to perhaps America’s greatest evolutionary biologist. [H-L]

The U.S. government is on track to approve nearly $40billion in foreign military sales in the 2016 fiscal year that ends October 1, down from $46.6 billion last year, a top Pentagon official said on Wednesday. [HuffPo]

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Tuesday Morning Dept Of Nonsense

This is terrible news for Matt Bevin. For Kentucky workers who have health insurance through their employers, the number enrolled in high-deductible plans has risen sharply over the last eight years. [H-L]

A photo of an unnamed protester at a Black Lives Matter demonstration in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has become a powerful image of the ongoing struggle between law enforcement and black Americans. [HuffPo]

Ethics? What ethics? Matt Bevin doesn’t know how to spell “ethics”, let alone what it means. [C-J/AKN]

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson said Sunday he has had “unpleasant” experiences with law enforcement in the past, but praised the work of police officers serving their communities. [The Hill]

Some may think the illegal dumping of about 2,000 tons of radioactive fracking sludge at Blue Ridge Landfill near Irvine as mainly Estill County’s problem. [Richmond Register]

Three countries have warned their citizens to stay on guard when visiting U.S. cities rocked by sometimes violent protests that erupted after a string of police shootings of black Americans. [Reuters]

A new program to encourage students interested in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) will launch in the fall at Lawrence County middle schools and high school. [Ashland Independent]

Evidence is mounting that doctors who receive as little as one meal from a drug company tend to prescribe more expensive, brand-name medications for common ailments than those who don’t. [ProPublica]

Members of the Cave City Tourism and Convention Commission voted in a special-called meeting Monday to replace an air handler that stopped cooling for the West Hall of the Cave City Convention Center. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump’s video statement at the end of a week of national turmoil was a good start, the Rev. Jesse Jackson indicated Sunday. But, he said, the presumptive Republican nominee bears some of the blame for his past rhetoric. [Politico]

Kentucky’s political leaders responded to Thursday’s shootings in Dallas, Texas with grief, sympathy and a hint of the debates to come on gun control and police-involved violence. [WFPL]

The US economy created 287,000 jobs in June, rebounding strongly from disappointing growth in May. [BBC]

Mary Love says she “got caught in the trap” a decade ago when she needed help to pay the rent on her apartment. [John Cheves]

According to presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump, former Indiana University basketball coach Bobby Knight will be a key figure at the upcoming Republican National Convention ― where he will presumably hurl Clint Eastwood’s 2012 convention chair at an underperforming point guard, or something. [HuffPo]

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