Whitney Jones

News Reporter

Whitney grew up listening to Car Talk to and from her family’s beach vacation each year, but it wasn’t until a friend introduced her to This American Life that radio really grabbed her attention. She is a recent graduate from Union University in Jackson, Tenn., where she studied journalism. When she’s not at WKMS, you can find her working on her backyard compost pile and garden, getting lost on her bicycle or crocheting one massive blanket.

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Tennessee General Assembly / http://www.capitol.tn.gov/

A Nashville television station is alleging Tennessee State Rep. Andy Holt has committed violations and contaminated a creek while farming hogs in Weakley County. But state regulators haven’t taken any action against him.

http://www.cpe.ky.gov/ / Council on Postsecondary Education

Paducah attorney Glenn Denton is the next Council on Postsecondary Education Chair, and the first western Kentuckian to lead the group.

CPE’s board elected Denton to the position today at its meeting in Frankfort as well as naming Joe Graviss of Versailles vice chair.

Chad Lampe / WKMS

Aaron Thompson talked with Chad Lampe on Sounds Good about his upbringing during integration and struggles schools and teachers face today. Listen to the full interview below.


  Aaron Thompson is an outlier. The eastern Kentucky native is the son of an illiterate coal miner father who, he says, signed his name with an X. Thompson's mother held the highest level education in his family. She graduated from the eighth grade. But now, Thompson has risen through the academic ranks to be the chief academic officer for Kentucky's Council on Post-Secondary Education.

http://401kcalculator.org / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

The Kentucky Retirement Systems billed Hopkins County more than $51,000 last month for so-called pension spiking, or artificially raising employees’ wages to increase their benefits, but county officials are disputing the matter.

Hopkins County Attorney Byron Hobgood said the Kentucky Retirement System bill is for a retiree who lost wages during a long medical leave and then received a pay increase the following year when he returned to work.

Wade White/Facebook

Two western Kentucky Judge Executives are concerned about the U.S. Forest Service’s land management activities at Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area.

Downtown Gender Equality Rally / Facebook

A transgender Madisonville North Hopkins High School Student is holding a rally tomorrow in downtown Madisonville calling for transgender rights.

Ashley Marks says the rally comes after the high school asked transgender students to use a handicap bathroom instead of the one of their choice. Additionally, State Senator C.B. Embry is behind a bill calling for students to use the restroom corresponding to their anatomical gender.

Anthem Inc.

The health insurance provider Anthem is investigating a massive security breach with hackers accessing the information of 80 million people including the company’s own employees.

Murray State University is just one employer that provides Anthem benefits to its employees.  

US Department of Energy / Wikimedia Commons

The Department of Energy is pulling funding from a central Illinois project that’s been heralded as the future of clean coal technology saying it can’t be completed before the initial deadline.

The project explores carbon capture and sequestration. Spokesman Lawrence Pacheco says without the federal funding the FutureGen Industrial Alliance project in Morgan County cannot go on.


  Update: The bargaining date has been moved to Thursday, Feb 5. 

The Metropolis Honeywell plant and the United Steelworkers Local 7-6-6-9 are set to continue negotiations Feb. 4.

Honeywell Plant Manager Jim Pritchett said in a company letter today that the two groups have had informal talks during the past few months.

Ted Eytan/taedc / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Updated 1/31/15 12:22 p.m.  

A Madisonville North Hopkins High School transgender student is working on a petition to allow him to use the bathroom he chooses instead of the handicap one made available for those who identify as transgender. School officials haven’t yet received the petition, but say they’ll seek legal guidance although they aren’t aware of any laws regulating bathroom use.

Meanwhile State Senator C.B. Embry filed a bill this month requiring students use the restroom corresponding to their anatomical gender.