The Associated Press

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Politics
7:53 am
Thu October 11, 2012

Two Ky. Political Foes to Offer Spin at VP Debate

Two former Kentucky political foes are offering spin at the vice presidential debate Thursday in Danville. Republican Sen. Rand Paul and Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway will be among the pundits speaking to reporters covering the matchup between Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan. Conway and Paul faced off in the heated 2010 Senate race. Paul won, and Conway was elected for a second term as Kentucky’s attorney general.

Society
7:48 am
Thu October 11, 2012

Ill. Sees More Foreclosures This Year Than Last

http://www.iconfinder.com

Illinois foreclosures are up more than 30 percent from the same time last year. A RealtyTrac report shows third-quarter foreclosures totaled more than 42,000. That’s one of every 126 housing units, 4 percent higher than the second quarter.  That puts the state at the fourth highest foreclosure rate in the U.S.  Illinois foreclosures did drop 20 percent in September when compared to August. The three highest foreclosure rates are in Florida, Arizona and California. But nationally, foreclosure filings hit a 5-year low last month. The last time the rate was this low was in December 2007.

Government
3:59 pm
Wed October 10, 2012

Judge Files Injunction to Keep Illinois Prisons Open

A southern Illinois judge has again barred Governor Pat Quinn from going forward with his plan to close two prisons. Circuit Judge Charles Cavaness cited safety concerns when he issued the injunction yesterday in Alexander County. It replaces a temporary restraining order he issued last month and requires the prisons to remain open while the administration and a union go through arbitration.

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Education
8:21 am
Wed October 10, 2012

1 in 4 Ky Children Ready for Kindergarten

Preliminary data presented to the Kentucky Board of Education shows just one in four children in the Commonwealth are ready for kindergarten. Next year all 174 school districts will be required to have kindergarten screening. Education Commissioner Terry Holliday says he expects the number of children not ready to start school will increase then. Associate Commissioner Felicia Smith says fewer than 110 districts participated in this year’s screening, representing 34,500 children. The tests assess the whole child, including social and emotional development.

Government
8:15 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Democratic Lawmaker Defends Tenn. Department of Children's Services

TN Department of Children's Services

A Democratic lawmaker who played a role in the formation of the embattled Tennessee Department of Children's Services says the agency's commissioner shouldn't be blamed for deeply rooted problems she inherited. The agency has released information showing that 31 children it had investigated died during the first half of 2012. Critics want to replace DCS Commissioner Kate O’Day, who Governor Bill Haslam appointed just last year. However, Representative John Deberry of Memphis, who has been a DCS critic over the years, says the problem isn’t O’Day. It’s many of the workers she oversees.

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Society
8:10 am
Wed October 10, 2012

New Ky. License Plate Depicts World Record Fish

Kentucky has a new license plate available for sale depicting a world record smallmouth bass. People can preorder the plate commemorating David Hayes’ catch from Dale Hollow Lake in 1955. Kentucky’s Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources says Hayes caught almost 12-pound fish while trolling near a new boat ramp. The plate will cost $25 and will be available in March. Preorders are being taken until Oct. 20.

Culture
8:04 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Ky. Bluegrass Festival Successful Despite Dispute

Wikimedia Commons

An Ohio County festival honoring bluegrass pioneer Bill Monroe was successful despite a legal battle over using the music icon’s name and likeness. Festival Organizer Campbell Mercer says around 15,000 fans attended the Jerusalem Ridge Bluegrass Celebration last weekend. A court had stopped Mercer from using Monroe’s likeness or name in promotions. Campbell is in a dispute with Ohio County and the county industrial foundation. Both groups lay legal claim to Monroe’s name and image since they bought the rights from Monroe’s sons 13 years ago.

Government
8:01 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Tenn. Regulator Calls Fracking Opponents 'Stupid'

A Tennessee worker who supervises the state’s regulation of oil and gas production says opponents of hydraulic fracturing are, in his words, “stupid.” Michael Burton’s comment was found in handwritten notes on emails sent to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. The emails solicited public comment on new regulations for hydraulic fracturing. The process, also known as fracking, extracts natural gas from rock by injecting high pressure mixtures of sand, water or gravel and chemicals.

Government
7:55 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Tenn. Tax Collections Show Marginal Growth

www.en.wikipedia.com

Tennessee tax collections show marginal growth in the budget year’s second month. Finance Commissioner Mark Emkes says September revenues continue to reflect the sluggish national economy. Overall revenues totaled just over $1 billion, more than 5 percent above the budgeted estimate. September collections reflect economic activity in the previous month. Sales tax collections came to $2.2 billion less than estimates for the same month, and combined franchise and excise taxes were almost $55 million above projections. Gasoline and motor fuel collections were $3 million below estimates.

Government
7:52 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Beshear: Don't Text and Drive

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear is sending a message to drivers that texting and driving is not acceptable. Beshear will meet with AT&T Kentucky, state police and an automobile wreck survivor today at the Capitol to sign the “Don’t Text and Drive Day” proclamation. The group will also announce a campaign encouraging Kentuckians to make a pledge that they won’t text while driving. The state passed a law against texting and driving two years ago.

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