Archives for September 2019

Kentucky Unemployment Rate Ticks Up in August

Kentucky officials say the state’s unemployment rate rose slightly in August.

The Kentucky Center for Statistics says the state’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 4.4% last month. The preliminary figure is up from the 4.3% rate in July.

State officials say Kentucky’s trade, transportation and utilities sector gained 1,500 jobs last month. The leisure and hospitality sector grew by 900 positions. Officials say the professional and business services sector fell by 3,000 jobs. Officials say the manufacturing sector declined by 1,700 jobs.

Gov. Bevin Under Fire for Use of State-Owned Aircraft

Kentucky’s Republican governor has run into some criticism over his use of taxpayer-owned aircraft, creating another distraction for a reelection campaign already dogged by feuds with teachers, struggles over state pensions and a legal fight with his lieutenant governor.

Gov. Matt Bevin tried to defuse the air travel controversy by having his office release a log disclosing the purposes of his official trips on state-owned aircraft. Bevin’s office said the disclosure goes beyond what Kentucky law requires.

But the state Democratic Party called it a stunt, because it doesn’t address his use of state aircraft for political and personal trips.

Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Names First Female President/CEO

The Kentucky Chamber of Commerce has announced Ashli R. Watts as its new president and CEO and says she is the first female to serve in that role.

A statement from the state’s largest business organization says Watts will take the position on Nov. 1, succeeding 66-year-old Dave Adkisson, who is retiring after 15 years.

The chamber says it conducted a national 8-month search before deciding on Watts, who currently serves as senior vice president of public affairs for the organization. The 37-year-old Watts has led the Chamber’s advocacy efforts on topics including workers’ compensation reform and right to work legislation.

Looking For Church Burglars

The Madison County Sheriff’s Office is hoping that surveillance video will identify two suspects in a church burglary.The two men were involved in a burglary at Whitehall Baptist Church on September 13. The sheriff posted two videos to his social media in hopes that someone will recognize the men and turn them in.If you have information, contact Sergeant Derek Thomas at 859-623-1511 or Madison County 911 at 859-624-4776.

Looking For An Explosives Thief

Federal and state officials are investigating the theft of explosives from a construction site in Kentucky and have offered a reward.The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Louisville said the theft occurred between Friday afternoon and Monday morning near Wheelrim Road in Morgan County. Kentucky State Police are assisting in the investigation.ATF is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to recovery of the explosives or an arrest and conviction. Information can be reported confidentially at (888) 283-8477.

KY Has First Urban Trail Town

Officials say a city in central Kentucky is set to become the state’s first urban trail town.The News-Enterprise reports the title will go to Elizabethtown for its Greenbelt Trails system and officials plan to recognize the accomplishment on Oct. 1 with a ceremony.Elizabethtown Trail Town Advisory Board member Matt Deneen says the state Department of Tourism developed the new classification as a blueprint for expanding its Trail Town program into urban centers around Kentucky.

Reviewing The Death Penalty

Kentucky’s Supreme Court delved into a case Thursday revolving around whether the death penalty should apply to defendants who committed their crimes between the ages of 18 and 21.The case reached the high court after a lower court judge ruled that applying the death penalty to such defendants amounts to an “unconstitutionally disproportionate punishment.”During arguments in Somerset, Kentucky, Assistant Attorney General Matthew Krygiel urged the Supreme Court to overturn the 2017 ruling by Fayette County Circuit Judge Ernesto Scorsone.

Boosting Kentucky’s Tourism

Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andy Beshear has released a plan aimed at making Kentucky a bigger tourism destination as a way to build economic growth.Beshear’s plan, released Thursday, calls for a new marketing campaign focused on attracting tourists from nearby states. He says marketing efforts should emphasize Kentucky’s scenic attractions.Beshear is challenging Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.The Democratic challenger says Kentucky has fallen behind Tennessee in attracting visitors.His plan calls for making workforce development a priority in the hospitality industry and working to attract new professional sports teams and events.

Burn Ban In Effect In Much Of Kentucky

The recent dry spell is causing concerns for local county officials. Some parts of the state are in a moderate drought, and some counties are already dealing with forest fires. A reminder Estill, Floyd, Jackson, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Laurel, Lee, Letcher, Lincoln, Magoffin, Perry, Pike, Powell, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Wayne, Whitley and Wolfe Counties all issued burn bans this week. The City of Jackson also issued a ban, though Breathitt County has not at this time.

Elizabethtown Set To Be State’s Urban Trail Town

Officials say a city in central Kentucky is set to become the state’s first urban trail town.The News-Enterprise reports the title will go to Elizabethtown for its Greenbelt Trails system and officials plan to recognize the accomplishment on Oct. 1 with a ceremony.Elizabethtown Trail Town Advisory Board member Matt Deneen says the state Department of Tourism developed the new classification as a blueprint for expanding its Trail Town program into urban centers around Kentucky.