RPK Denies Trying To Take Louisville Over, Egg Still Visible On Its Face

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Kentucky Retirement Systems, the state pension agency that officially faces an $18.1 billion unfunded liability, might be in far worse financial shape than previously thought. That means taxpayers could be on the hook for much more money to honor pension commitments to about 365,000 public employees. [John Cheves]

Donald Trump’s administration labeled The Associated Press’s reporting on a leak “100 percent false” on Friday morning, only to acknowledge less than an hour later that the story was based on a real document. [HuffPo]

If you think this isn’t a Republican attempt to take over in Louisville, you’re probably someone who believes the moon landing was faked. [C-J/AKN]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham and Scott Jennings wouldn’t understand… Zircons are an ordinary gemstone found in granites from continental crust and are an incredibly accurate way to measure ages on the order of hundreds of millions to billions of years old. [Forbes]

Remember a decade or so ago when we started uncovering and reporting on corruption involving Jim Ramsey and the University of Louisville? And when Ramsey, et al (mostly Democrats tied to Jack Conway), started coming for us? Funny how that works. Turns out we were right all along. [WFPL]

Twice as many people now work in solar than in the coal industry, according to a new survey from the nonprofit Solar Foundation. [Fast Company]

If you happen to be on the campus of Harvard University this spring and you run into former Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear, don’t be surprised. Beshear will be on campus as part of the Richard L. and Ronay A. Menschel Senior Leadership Fellows at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. [Business First]

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation is pursuing at least three separate probes relating to alleged Russian hacking of the U.S. presidential elections, according to five current and former government officials with direct knowledge of the situation. [Reuters]

After the ease with which it passed out of committee on Thursday — with no nay votes — there wasn’t much surprise Friday when the full Senate unanimously passed the latest Kentucky education reform bill. [Ronnie Ellis]

In light of the stunning events of the past week, the question is not whether the Trump administration’s ties to the Russian government need to be investigated immediately and fully — clearly they do. It’s who will be in charge of that investigation? The Republicans in Congress can’t decide whether they would rather act like a responsible, independent branch or just the friendly legislative arm of the White House. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House oversight committee, would sooner investigate a cartoon character named Sid the Science Kid than any allegations relating to President Trump. [NY Times]

From the Department of Things That Make You Go Hmm… Ashland is ranked eighth as one of the top places to retire in Kentucky, according to a SmartAsset study. [Ashland Independent]

Betsy DeVos criticized teachers at a D.C. school she visited and they took her ass to school. This is the backward, bigoted, out-of-touch woman Scott Jennings and the Republican Party of Kentucky are continually praising. [WaPo]

Tim Conley is a con artist who just won’t quit. He and his family hid behind Jesus – as if that’s okay – while he robbed Morgan County blind as people were suffering and mourning deaths after a tornado that wiped out West Liberty. He deserves to remain in prison until 2021. And honestly, deserves to be shunned for the rest of his time on earth. [H-L]

Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) gave a staunch defense of the free press Saturday, noting that attacks on the media are “how dictators get started.” [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

500,000 Kentuckians To Lose Health Care

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Two things: It’s the Republican Party of Kentucky, not Kentucky Republican Party – but Valarie’s not exactly a stickler for details, as you already know. And Jonathan Miller and Brooke Parker representing Fayette County Public Schools? Are you flipping kidding? HAHAHAHA. You should see the documents Miller initially produced to try to get Parker hired at FBT. [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump repeatedly called out the publication of unverified allegations that he has ties to Russia as “fake news” during Wednesday’s press conference, his first in nearly six months. [HuffPo]

You already knew Matt Bevin was to blame for the University of Louisville shenanigans. But here’s more proof. [C-J/AKN]

President-elect Donald Trump is dodging serious questions raised by a blockbuster CNN story that top U.S. intelligence officials presented Trump with documents including Russian claims that they have “compromising” information about the president-elect. Instead, he is trying to turn the conversation into a discussion about ethics in political journalism, and some in the press are playing along, helping the president-elect avoid accountability. [Media Matters]

On Wednesday, those that help Richmond job seekers find employment and assist with unemployment claims were told they themselves would soon be working elsewhere. [Richmond Register]

500,000 Kentuckians stand to lose access to health care. But that’s not exactly something Republicans care about in the Commonwealth. [Click the Clicky]

Kentucky’s 51 career centers will be reorganized into 12 hubs and eight existing satellite offices effective Feb. 16, according to an emailed statement from Education and Workforce Development Secretary Hal Heiner. [Glasgow Daily Times]

President-elect Donald Trump aims to open up federal lands to more energy development, tapping into a long-running and contentious debate over how best to manage America’s remaining wilderness. [Reuters]

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools on Wednesday informed the University of Louisville in writing that it remains out of compliance with requirements of the accrediting agency and will lose accreditation if it fails to address the concerns within two years. [Ronnie Ellis]

President-elect Donald Trump tweeted Wednesday that he has “NOTHING TO DO WITH RUSSIA – NO DEALS, NO LOANS, NO NOTHING!” Trump, however, has a long history with Russia, trying repeatedly to build luxury properties in Moscow, holding a beauty pageant there and benefiting from heavy investments from Russians in his properties around the world. [WaPo]

Gynnya entered Lincoln Village Regional Juvenile Detention Center in Hardin County on Jan. 10, 2016, and was pronounced dead the next morning. [WFPL]

A recent reworking of language concerning climate change on a Wisconsin government website could be replicated under a Trump administration. [ProPublica]

The Republican Party of Kentucky will NEVER take the time to listen to real Kentuckians who are most impacted by their backward legislation. Never have, never will. [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he would place his two sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, in charge of his multibillion-dollar Trump Organization. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets! [CLICK HERE]

That Big Republican Rush Job Was Fun

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

It was reported Sunday afternoon that three persons had been killed and a Rowan County sheriff’s deputy wounded at a residence on Island Fork Road about 15 miles north of Morehead. [The Morehead News]

The shouts of angry union workers echoed through the state Capitol on Saturday as Kentucky’s Republican-majority legislature gave final approval to bills limiting the power of labor unions to collect dues and banning abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. [H-L]

The head of the Office of Government Ethics expressed alarm Saturday that the Senate would begin considering President-elect Donald Trump’s nominees for cabinet positions before they’ve been fully vetted for conflicts of interests. [HuffPo]

Legislation that would abolish the University of Louisville’s board of trustees and allow Gov. Matt Bevin to appoint a brand-new one for the second time during his first term in office is on its way to the governor’s desk. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have scheduled several Senate confirmation hearings for Trump’s cabinet picks — as well as Trump’s first (and likely only) press conference of the transition — on a single day next week. The strategy seems designed to ensure that the media is unable to devote sufficient scrutiny to each story and to reduce the possibility of an educated public responding. [Media Matters]

Hundreds of union members and supporters crammed the state capitol Saturday crying to be heard before Republican lawmakers passed legislation they say will boost the economy but which labor believes is crafted to weaken unions. [Ronnie Ellis]

They love playing the Rand Paul plagiarism game – just like the ditz at WKYT in Lexington. Monica Crowley, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick to lead communications for the National Security Council, plagiarized parts of her 2012 book. [The Hill]

Republicans showed off their newly empowered dominance in Kentucky during a rare Saturday session of the Kentucky General Assembly, passing a bevy of bills long-sought by their party over Democratic objections. [Ashland Independent]

First lady Michelle Obama made an impassioned case for embracing diversity and welcoming all religious groups on Friday in a not-so-veiled message to her husband’s successor two weeks ahead of Inauguration Day. [Reuters]

At least four new alcoholic beverage control licenses were issued in Barren County on Thursday and Friday – all for packaged malt beverages. Two were within the city of Glasgow and two were in unincorporated parts of the county, and the latter two started selling the product right away. [Glasgow Daily Times]

This is one of the most scandalous stories you’re going to read for a while. [NY Times]

With the University of Louisville’s accreditation in the balance, the state legislature voted on Saturday to abolish the school’s board of trustees and create a new, smaller board, much like Gov. Matt Bevin tried to do last summer. [WFPL]

Republican lawmakers in Kentucky passed a bill Saturday making it the 27th state to allow workers the right to work in union-represented shops and receive union-negotiated benefits without paying dues to the representing body. [WaPo]

Repealing two key pieces of the Affordable Care Act could cost Kentucky nearly 45,000 jobs in 2019 because of reduced federal spending, according to a new study. [H-L]

The story that Obamacare opponents tell about its enactment is that backers conceived the health insurance proposal in secret, misled the public about its provisions, and passed it without thinking through the consequences. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets! [CLICK HERE]

Republicans Are Rushing Because They Know Much Of What They Do Will Ultimately Be Reversed

Yes, reversed. Sooner or later.

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Although Republican lawmakers said they would focus in 2017 on jobs and Kentucky’s economy, the first bills to fly out of the Senate and House chambers on Thursday concerned women’s access to abortion. [John Cheves]

New research has further eroded a go-to argument from climate change deniers: that there’s been a significant slowdown, or hiatus, in global warming.
[HuffPo]

The Kentucky Senate on Thursday passed a bill to abolish the University of Louisville board of trustees and create a new system of appointing its members over objections of Democrats who said Republicans were rushing through a measure that could hurt U of L’s accreditation. [C-J/AKN]

The debts of President-elect Donald Trump and his businesses are scattered across Wall Street banks, mutual funds and other financial institutions, broadening the tangle of interests that pose potential conflicts for the incoming president’s administration. Mr. Trump has previously disclosed that his businesses owe at least $315 million to 10 companies. According to the Journal’s analysis, Trump businesses’ debts are held by more than 150 institutions. [WSJ]

The new Republican majority in the state House of Representatives voted Thursday to make Kentucky a right-to-work state and require women preparing to have an abortion undergo an ultrasound 24 hours before the procedure. [Ronnie Ellis]

Senate Democrats on Thursday demanded an ethics probe into Tom Price, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for U.S. health secretary, following a report that the fierce Obamacare critic traded in healthcare company stocks while pushing legislation in Congress that could affect those shares. [Reuters]

Kentucky lawmakers in the coming days will likely approve a measure to repeal the state’s prevailing wage law. [WFPL]

House Republicans’ push to bring back earmarks this year faces a much tougher road after the GOP’s disastrous and unsuccessful effort this week to weaken a congressional ethics watchdog. [The Hill]

Here’s a look at how media is failing miserably at educating rural Kentucky about what’s at stake with charter schools. Way to go, Morehead News, for sucking harder than necessary. [The Morehead News]

The US has identified the Russian agents behind alleged hacking ahead of the presidential election won by Donald Trump in November, reports say. [BBC]

A statewide judicial redistricting plan that would strip Boyd County of two of its four judges but provide a family court judge was decried on Thursday by the Ashland Board of City Commissioners. [Ashland Independent]

Amid tension over the president-elect’s vision for intelligence agencies, R. James Woolsey Jr. said he did not want to “fly under false colors.” [WaPo]

Way to go, mouth-breathing Republicans! Repealing two key pieces of the Affordable Care Act could cost Kentucky nearly 45,000 jobs in 2019 because of reduced federal spending, according to a new study. [H-L]

Much like Donald Trump, former Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson ― the Republican president-elect’s choice for secretary of state ― appears well on his way to making Sen. John McCain’s blacklist. Asked by reporters Wednesday if he would support Trump’s nomination of the oil tycoon, a friend of Russia, McCain quipped: “Sure ― there’s also a realistic scenario that pigs fly.” [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets! [CLICK HERE]

What The Heck Is Going On In Glasgow?

Paintsville Mayor Robert Porter announced his resignation in the wake of a federal corruption conviction. [H-L]

Two big-money donors who have given or raised tens of thousands of dollars for Donald Trump are livid at the Republican presidential nominee and are asking for their money back, according to a bundler who raised money for Trump. [NBC News]

Under Mayor Greg Fischer’s leadership, Louisville has undertaken several studies aimed at better understanding the city’s environmental challenges. A new national ranking suggests it may be time to move beyond research and into action. [C-J/AKN]

In August, the country’s worst natural disaster since 2012’s Superstorm Sandy hit Louisiana. Flooding killed 13 people and left more than 80,000 homes severely damaged. And once again, the American Red Cross’ response left local officials seething. [ProPublica]

Incumbent Republican Sen. Rand Paul is targeted by two separate attack ads released Tuesday, one from the campaign of Paul’s Democratic challenger Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and the other from a PAC supporting Gray. [Ronnie Ellis]

Lawmakers in a state that abolished the death penalty in 2009 want to resurrect it for political gain, according to Democratic lawmakers in New Mexico. [ThinkProgress]

Five of the seven candidates running for commissioner of Ashland answered questions about missing tires, city water and job growth on Monday in a forum hosted by the Human Rights Commission. [Ashland Independent]

Republican candidate Donald Trump has denied the allegation that he violated the US trade embargo with Cuba. [BBC]

Morehead City Council passed an ordinance on Monday evening to allow the sale of packaged alcohol sales on Sunday. [The Morehead News]

The U.S. has lifted sanctions against Myanmar that have been in place for nearly two decades. [NPR]

Everything about this smells scandalous. Glasgow Councilman Gary Oliver, when asked directly by fellow council member Karalee Oldenkamp, still would not reveal his motivation behind asking the city’s legislative body to consider reducing its size, starting with the 2018 election. [Glasgow Daily Times]

When you are threatening to investigate and then jail your political opponent in a presidential debate you have crossed an exceptionally dangerous line. [Boston Globe]

The federal government has denied Kentucky’s request for a one-year extension to comply with regulations known as Real ID, requiring tougher standards for driver’s licenses and identification cards. [H-L]

Donald Trump may be losing ground in Utah, according to a new poll that was conducted after the release of the tape in which the Republican presidential nominee boasts about sexually assaulting women. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets! [CLICK HERE]

UK Must Be Envious Of UofL’s Bad Press, Wants More Of The Action

The University of Kentucky’s Senate Council split its votes over approval of a proposed free enterprise center funded by the Charles Koch Foundation and pizza magnate John Schnatter, but the matter will still move to the full university senate. [H-L]

Republicans who wondered whether a teleprompter-less Donald Trump could retain the self-discipline of the previous month without a script to read from got their answer Monday night. [HuffPo]

The wife of former state personnel secretary Tim Longmeyer pleaded for leniency for him in a three-page letter – one in a batch to a federal judge that was made public a day before Longmeyer’s scheduled sentencing for bribery. And so did a bunch of Beshear people. [C-J/AKN]

GOP nominee Donald Trump has said he plans to spend billions of dollars on so-called school choice programs. [ProPublica]

Barren County’s jobless rate dropped from 4.8 percent in July to 4.3 percent in August according to labor force estimates provided by the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training. [Glasgow Daily Times]

It started with a mystifying missed opportunity on race. It ended with a piercing attack on gender. [NY Times]

While Advanced Placement exam scores in Kentucky improved this year, the number of test takers went down. [WLKY]

The greatest mystery heading into the first presidential debate here at Hofstra University was which version of the unpredictable Republican candidate would show up for his first one-on-one face-off with Democratic rival Hillary Clinton. [WaPo]

A month after setting the local property tax rate at the same level as the previous year, the Harlan County Board of Education formally adopted a working budget reflecting those amounts during their September meeting. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

The two US presidential candidates have clashed over jobs, terrorism and race in a bitter television debate. [BBC]

Former residents of Hazard banded together to form a non-profit organization called Appalachian Connection. The mission of the non-profit is to help students in the Appalachian region with the financial burden of higher education. [Hazard Herald]

At the first presidential debate on Monday night, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton brought up some of the disparaging things Republican rival Donald Trump has said about women over the years, saying, “This is a man who has called women pigs, slobs, and dogs.” [ThinkProgress]

After months of negotiations, the Fayette County Public Schools board voted Monday to buy 39 acres adjacent to Edythe J. Hayes Middle School on Athens-Boonesboro Road for a new elementary school. [H-L]

Donald Trump, within striking distance of the presidency, stepped on stage here Monday and did what Hillary Clinton hoped he would. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for Ting or Cricket and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets! [CLICK HERE]