Another Gut-Wrenching Kentucky Statistic For Your Tuesday Morning

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Lexington’s Urban County Planning Commission will hold one of its first meetings Thursday on the 2018 Comprehensive Plan, a document that will guide growth and development for five years. [H-L]

Dozens of Democratic members of Congress are planning to boycott President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20, saying they can’t bring themselves to welcome a man to the White House who ran such a divisive and prejudiced campaign ― and insulted their colleague, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.). [HuffPo]

Kentucky has twice the U.S. rate of drug-dependent babies. So of course mouth-breathing Republicans like Bob Stivers and Matt Bevin want to kill the Affordable Care Act. [C-J/AKN]

More than 60 percent of Americans would like to see the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s powers preserved or strengthened under incoming President Donald Trump, and the drilling of oil on public lands to hold steady or drop, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Tuesday. [Reuters]

Bernheim Forest is growing. The arboretum and research forest’s most recent acquisition is 162 acres of forest and farmland immediately adjacent to the property in Bullitt County. [WFPL]

Matthew Olsen, a senior national security official in both Democratic and Republican administrations, says the ongoing conflict between President-elect Trump and the U.S. intelligence community poses grave risks. [ProPublica]

Owners of a proposed medical waste facility detailed their business plans and were met with a barrage of questions from concerned residents during a public forum Monday at the Carter County Justice Center. [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump used to regularly give press conferences. They were free-form events, bits of political performance art that dominated the news and helped the presidential hopeful win the Republican nomination. [BBC]

School based decision making councils presented information from school improvement plans to the Rowan County Board of Education on Monday, Jan. 9 and Tuesday, Jan. 10. [The Morehead News]

The Germans are angry. The Chinese are downright furious. Leaders of NATO are nervous, while their counterparts at the European Union are alarmed. [NY Times]

Improvements to the 619.2 miles of road the county government is responsible for maintaining were among the items Barren County Judge-Executive Micheal Hale highlighted in the annual update on what’s happening in county government Friday. [Glasgow Daily Times]

We shouldn’t be surprised anymore. There’s apparently no depth too low for Donald Trump to sink in his unpresidented attacks on anyone who challenges him. And Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) certainly did that, citing Russian interference in the election and questioning the legitimacy of Trump’s presidency. [WaPo]

The Coalition for the Homeless says it needs volunteers to conduct its annual homeless count in Louisville this month. [H-L]

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Monday night renewed his calls on the Office of Congressional Ethics to launch an investigation into potential violations of the STOCK Act by Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the department of Health and Human Services. [HuffPo]

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Republicans Will Face Scrutiny On A Level They’ve Never Anticipated And Appear To Be Clueless About That Reality

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The federal prosecutor who pursued criminal convictions of former agriculture commissioner Richie Farmer and other Kentucky public officials is resigning. [H-L]

A federal judge in Texas on Saturday issued a court order barring enforcement of an Obama administration policy seeking to extend anti-discrimination protections under the Affordable Care Act to transgender health and abortion-related services. [HuffPo]

Of course Matt Bevin’s crew of mouth-breathers (yes, all of you staffers are garbage people if you choose to work for that bigot while having other employment options) are continuing their anti-environment revisionist history tour. It’s nonsense like this that will guarantee Bevin’s place in history will rank far below people like Steve Nunn, Richie Farmer, Ernie Fletcher. [C-J/AKN]

“What’s going on, Daddy?” asked my 6-year-old son. It was the morning of Nov. 12, a Saturday — or “Dadurday” at my house — and we were in my pickup truck, headed to a family outing. [ProPublica]

The state Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) announced Tuesday it has signed an agreed order with Advanced Disposal Services Blue Ridge Landfill Inc. regarding the illegal dumping in 2015 of low-level, technologically enhanced, naturally occurring radioactive material (TENORM) at the landfill near Irvine. [Richmond Register]

Donald Trump conned the media on climate. His meetings with Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio are not the story. [ThinkProgress]

It took nearly 100 years for Republicans to gain control of the Kentucky House of Representatives. It took a whole lot less time for them to enjoy the privileges of the majority and for Democrats to suffer some of the slights of being in the minority for the first time since 1921. [Ronnie Ellis]

Three former White House press secretaries sounded various alarms about the president-elect and the possible pitfalls in his relationship with the media in a panel conversation with Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” [Politico]

If passed by legislators, family court will begin in Rowan County in 2022. A proposed judicial redistricting plan for district and circuit courts will be presented to state legislators in early 2017 when the General Assembly meets in regular session. [The Morehead News]

Between 1999 and 2014, drug overdose deaths in the United States nearly tripled. In 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 47,055 deaths from accidental drug overdoses. Opioids were implicated in 28,647 of them, 60.9 percent of the total. [NY Times]

The Republicans’ “new majority” in the Kentucky House of Representatives wasted little time Tuesday moving on key legislative priorities like right-to-work, prevailing wage and abortion. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump is set to inherit an uncommon number of vacancies in the federal courts in addition to the open Supreme Court seat, giving the president-elect a monumental opportunity to reshape the judiciary after taking office. [WaPo]

Screw poor women! Screw the poors! Sluts should pay the price! Right? That seems to be the Republican way of life in Kentucky – it’s their mantra. Just wait til these Republicans start to experience what it’s like to really be in power – exposure to public scrutiny on a scale that’s been previously unfathomable. Women would not be allowed to get an abortion in Kentucky if they are more than 20 weeks pregnant under a controversial bill filed Tuesday on the first day of the state’s 2017 law-making session. [H-L]

It’s fascinating to watch someone who refuses intelligence briefings claim that intelligence he hasn’t even received or reviewed is bogus. What’s more fascinating/terrifying? That ignorant buffoon is about to be your president. [HuffPo]

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Poor Kentuckians Will Suffer When Republicans Kill Health Care Reform For Their Personal Gain

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John Leach has spent the holidays wondering how he’d come up with nearly $400 a month to pay for health insurance. [H-L]

Donald Trump made the dubious claim on Twitter late Monday night that his foundation pays zero expenses and donates all of its money to charity. However, a number of reports appear to prove otherwise. [HuffPo]

The forensic accounting of the University of Louisville Foundation will not come cheap. The university’s contract with the international firm of Alvarez & Marsal Disputes and Investigations LLC calls for it to be paid a fee of $687,500 and a total amount, including travel and other expenses, of up to $897,500. [C-J/AKN]

Senate and House Republicans are headed for a clash over whether to tackle Medicare reform under President-elect Donald Trump. [The Hill]

The West Virginia county with the nation’s highest drug overdose death rate has filed a lawsuit against three national distributors of prescription painkillers and a local doctor, contending they are responsible for the county’s addiction epidemic. [Ashland Independent]

Jodie Patterson’s 3-year-old, Penelope, was brooding and angry until one day she asked her child what was wrong. [Reuters]

Once again, Kentucky ranks first for its adult smoking rates, barely inching ahead of West Virginia to take back the first place spot, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [Richmond Register]

A political action committee that backed Donald Trump’s bid for the presidency is continuing to flout campaign finance laws. [ProPublica]

Sheriff Matt Sparks told the Morehead Rotary Club Tuesday that he believes a better way is needed for county residents to look after each other, particularly those without family or friends and who live alone. [The Morehead News]

Besides the shuttering of the two compounds, administration officials announced the expulsion by Sunday of 35 unnamed Russian officials — and their families — who they said were working undercover as spies. [NY Times]

Members of the Glasgow-Barren County Industrial Development Economic Authority met Friday morning to discuss what to do about deficiencies discovered in metal panels that make up the walls of the organization’s spec building in the Highland Glen Industrial Park off New Bowling Green Road. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The career of Jeff Sessions, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, has been shadowed by his prosecution of the “Marion Three.” Held this because it would have gotten ignored over the holidays. [WaPo]

An attorney for the family of a missing Kentucky woman has filed an appeal aimed at gaining access to the chain of custody of a 911 tape from the day the Webster County woman disappeared more than 20 years ago. [H-L]

Virtually every mental health professional I interviewed told me that they believed, with 100% certainty, that Mr. Trump satisfied the DSM criteria of this incurable illness and that, as a result, he is a serious danger to the country and the world. [HuffPo]

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Happy New Year Of Matt Bevin’s Hype

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After six months, Matt Bevin’s ‘red tape reduction’ plan has brought little change. Because it’s just a bunch of b.s. hype. [H-L]

Here’s your pee alert/puke alert of the year. Newt Gingrich praised the style and substance of Donald Trump’s suggestion for a new nuclear arms race, calling the president-elect’s use of Twitter to make major policy pronouncements “brilliant.” [HuffPo]

Anyone telling you a Religious Freedumb law isn’t a sure bet in Kentucky is trying to pull the wool over your eyes. If you think Frankfort isn’t capable of obscene levels of crazy, you ought to retire. [C-J/AKN]

The curious world of Donald Trump’s private Russian connections. Did the American people really know they were putting such a “well-connected” guy in the White House? [The American Interest]

Big Run Landfill is seeking an end to an agreed order with the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet. [Ashland Independent]

Time to start allowing all the olds and the poors to die off, apparently. Way to go, Republicans. Fortunately, your generation will all be dead within 20 years because of your hate and obesity. While Democrats have been pounding the drum against proposed changes to Medicare, Republicans appear far more likely to pursue an overhaul of Medicaid, the healthcare program for the poor. [The Hill]

The World Equestrian Games could be heading to Lexington for a second time. The International Equestrian Federation announced Lexington, the 2010 host, is bidding to stage the four-yearly event in 2022. It faces competition from Samorin, Slovakia. [Richmond Register]

President-elect Donald Trump will descend on Washington [this] month, buoyed by his upset victory and Republican control of Congress to implement his agenda. But he’s facing a major obstacle: Trump will enter the White House as the least-popular incoming president in the modern era of public-opinion polling. [Politico]

The Kentucky Legislative Research Commission’s Office of Education Accountability released a research report for the 2015-16 school year. [The Morehead News]

Corey Statham had $46 in his pockets when he was arrested in Ramsey County, Minn., and charged with disorderly conduct. He was released two days later, and the charges were dismissed. [NY Times]

Two members of Auburn’s Amish community have filed a lawsuit against the city, its mayor and police chief in which they claim that Auburn’s ordinance requiring horses to wear equine diapers to catch their waste has singled out the city’s Amish population and violated their constitutional rights. [BGDN]

Evelyn Turner is 80 now and a stroke survivor, but she can still recall sitting in a packed courthouse in Selma, Ala., facing a jury that could send her and her husband, an aide to Martin Luther King Jr., to prison for 150 years. Held this because it would have gotten ignored over the holidays. [WaPo]

Matt Bevin has created a scholarship program for Kentucky high school students after vetoing a similar proposal earlier this year. [H-L]

With Donald Trump’s inauguration less than a month away, there’s been a lot of talk in Washington about two topics: first, the unprecedented conflicts of interest posed by the Trump presidency and, second, the individuals Trump is nominating to fill important government positions. [HuffPo]

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Woah, Johnny Boone Got Arrested

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The Kentucky Association of Counties and the Kentucky League of Cities don’t want Gov. Matt Bevin or the Kentucky General Assembly to mess with the well-funded, solvent state County Employees Retirement System. [H-L]

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump called on Thursday for the country to expand its nuclear weapons capabilities until the world “comes to its senses” – a signal he may support costly efforts to modernize the aging U.S. nuclear arsenal. [HuffPo]

This is the only thing people in the city know/think about the mountains of rural Kentucky. [C-J/AKN]

An 11-year-old transgender Ohio child must be allowed to continue to use the girls’ restroom while her school district appeals a court ruling in her favor, a U.S. appeals court ruled Thursday. [Reuters]

The parent company of Kentucky Electric Steel filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Thursday. [Ashland Independent]

ProPublica has sued the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, claiming the agency failed to promptly process a request for correspondence with a consultant about Agent Orange, a toxic defoliant used during the Vietnam War. [ProPublica]

Um, only a few places? Talk about a gross understatement. This is what happens when people from inside the Watterson try to write about the rest of the Commonwealth without ever having been anywhere. There are only a few places where alcohol sales are still completely banned in the Bluegrass. [Business First]

While Democrats vowed to fight the nomination of a climate denier to head up the Environmental Protection Agency, Republican congressmen and fossil fuel industry leaders celebrated on Thursday. [ThinkProgress]

As temperatures fall and Wednesday being the first day of winter, individuals and families who have fallen on hard times and found themselves without a place to lay their heads, may be looking for shelter from the cold. [Richmond Register]

Across Appalachia, coal miners are suffering from the most serious form of the deadly mining disease black lung in numbers more than 10 times what federal regulators report. [NPR]

The former leader of the Cornbread Mafia was arrested in Canada on Thursday. U.S. marshals picked up John “Johnny” Robert Boone in a small town outside Montreal after an extensive fugitive investigation. [WLKY]

So go buy the book about Johnny Boone ASAP. [Click Here]

Matt Bevin continues to prove he’s a turd burglar who is willfully ignorant of the laws of the Commonwealth and this nation. You can’t fix that kind of stupid. [H-L]

A senior United Nations official warned on Thursday that thousands of people evacuated from rebel-held areas of Aleppo after a crushing government offensive could suffer the same fate in their new place of refuge outside the city. [HuffPo]

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HAHAHA Julian Carroll HAHAHAHAHA

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How to know Kentucky Democrats are still dead and will remain dead: They selected Julian Carroll as a leader. Sorry for the lack of a pee alert. Saved this one a few days because it was too hilarious. [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump has tapped Rep. Ryan Zinke to become the next interior secretary. [HuffPo]

The majority of students who are sent to Jefferson County Public Schools’ two behavior alternative schools are black, even though black students make up only 36 percent of the district’s overall population. [C-J/AKN]

Mortality due to substance abuse has increased in Appalachia by more than 1,000 percent since 1980. Deaths from diabetes, blood and endocrine diseases also increased in most counties in the United States during that time. [FiveThirtyEight]

Rep. Rita Smart, D-Richmond, who lost her re-election bid by 76 votes to Republican C. Wesley Morgan, told the Madison County Elections Board on Thursday that she has learned of polling errors that could have affected her race and the race for Richmond City Commission. [Richmond Register]

Fox News analyst Monica Crowley, Donald Trump’s pick to be senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council, repeatedly pushed an unfounded conspiracy theory that claimed Hillary Clinton’s aide Huma Abedin has ties to Islamic extremists. [CNN]

When I was in school our report cards listed grades in subjects we were taking and one additional category — “conduct.” [Ronnie Ellis]

The Law and Justice Party rode to power on a pledge to drain the swamp of Polish politics and roll back the legacy of the previous administration. One year later, its patriotic revolution, the party proclaims, has cleaned house and brought God and country back to Poland. [WaPo]

The Morehead State University Board of Regents approved a new nursing degree and heard a report on fall enrollment at Friday’s quarterly meeting. [The Morehead News]

ExxonMobil successfully lobbied against a bill that would have made it harder for the next president to lift sanctions against Russia, clearing the way for the oil giant to restart a program worth billions of dollars if Donald Trump eases those restrictions as president. [Politico]

A team of biologists from various state and federal agencies have been working to relocate beds of mussels on the Green River over a two-week period. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The U.S. intelligence community will soon disclose an estimate of the number of Americans whose electronic communications have been caught in the crosshairs of online surveillance programs intended for foreigners, U.S. lawmakers said in a letter seen by Reuters on Friday. [Reuters]

About 3,500 former Daymar College students in Kentucky will begin receiving restitution checks totaling $1.2 million, Attorney General Andy Beshear’s office announced Wednesday. [H-L]

As President-elect Donald Trump’s economic team forms, it continues to be highly favorable to a key billionaire hedge fund donor who backed his candidacy when most on Wall Street wouldn’t touch him. [HuffPo]

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Now The Horsey Set Is Getting Nervous

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What will Donald Trump’s presidency mean for Thoroughbred racing? After all, Kentucky’s horse industry could never get out of the starting gate without the immigrants he demagogued as “criminals” and “rapists” during the campaign. [Tom Eblen]

Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of state, has expressed skepticism over the United States’ sanctions against Russia, as his company stands to reap enormous profits if they are lifted. [HuffPo]

If you think this is bad, you’d be surprised to learn that many in Eastern Kentucky rely on wells that are literally poison. Deep in the hills of Appalachian Kentucky is a tiny, lone wolf water system that didn’t test for lead or other contaminants for decades – leaving residents in the dark about whether their water is safe to drink. [C-J/AKN]

A group that gave more money to one of President-elect Trump’s fundraising efforts than any other political action committee failed to disclose its donors before Election Day and exceeded caps on contribution amounts. [ProPublica]

A year and one day after his inauguration, Republican Gov. Matt Bevin said much was accomplished in his first year and said he’s advised legislative leaders in his own party to be patient as Republicans attempt to pass a long pent-up legislative agenda. [Ronnie Ellis]

Donald Trump’s leading candidate for secretary of state, ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, would accelerate the president-elect’s collision course with Congress over his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin and raise new questions about Putin’s role in the election. [Politico]

So of course Frankfort will continue to cut funding. An outside panel has concluded that Kentucky’s social service system is “grossly underfunded” as the state’s child protection system struggles with the large number of children whose parents are abusing drugs. [AP/State Journal]

Religious minorities in the United States are far more likely to have attended college or a vocational school than members of the Christian majority, according to a review of census and survey data from 151 countries released on Tuesday that found wide gaps in education among followers of the world’s major religions. [NY Times]

A transgender man fired from GE Appliances in Louisville can sue for race and gender discrimination, according to a federal court ruling late last month. [WFPL]

The US is sending 200 more military personnel to help fight the Islamic State group in its Syrian stronghold of Raqqa, the US defence secretary says. [BBC]

Defeated in the Nov. 8 general election by 98 votes, Madison County School Board member John Lackey has filed suit seeking to have his opponent, Samantha Burford, disqualified. [Richmond Register]

The Dallas Police and Fire Pension System’s board has halted withdrawals from a deferred retirement plan following a lawsuit by the city’s mayor, who claimed withdrawals were accelerating the $2.7 billion pension system’s descent into insolvency. [Reuters]

A couple of years ago, I read a story in a British newspaper about Yiwu, China, where 600 factories churn out 60 percent of the world’s Christmas decorations, most of them synthetic, cheap and cheesy. [Tom Eblen]

Thousands of civilians remained trapped in eastern Aleppo on Tuesday, fighting for their lives as pro-government forces moved to regain control from rebel groups. [HuffPo]

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