Marion, KY – Three Crittenden County men, including the pastor of a Webster County church, have been arrested on federal drug charges related to a marijuana grow operation. 57-year-old Alvin Davis, 37-year-old Carl Belt, and 67-year-old Charles Blackburn were indicted earlier this month by a federal grand jury in Paducah. The indictment alleges the three knowingly and intentionally conspired to manufacture more than 100 plants since Spring of this year. If convicted, the three could face up to 40 years in prison and a $2 million fine.
Nashville, TN – TennCare officials say they will be forced to cut some enrollee benefits if Governor Phil Bredesen asks them to make a 9% reduction in spending. While most agencies have been asked to present plans to cut 6% from their spending for the next budget year, Bredesen has asked them to prepare an additional 3% cut in case economic conditions persist.
Mayfield, KY – The Purchase District Health Department has confirmed a recent flu death was the novel H1N1 virus. An elderly Graves County resident, who officials say had significant underlying medical conditions, died recently. Statewide deaths associated with H1N1 now exceed 20. Vaccine clinics continue throughout the area, though departments continue to only give out supplies to high risk groups.
Washington, D. C. – Kentucky First District U-S Congressman Ed Whitfield today raised concerns about the shortage of H1N1 vaccines. Speaking at a meeting of the House Subcommittee on Health, Whitfield said he has received numerous phone calls from constituents about the need for more vaccines. Whitfield calls for investigation into production delays and distribution processes. The House panel is evaluating the country's response and further plans to handle the H1N1 pandemic.