Kentucky

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A new study shows drug overdose deaths in Kentucky rose 282 percent between 2000 and 2010. The Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center analyzed information from emergency rooms, in-patient hospitalizations and mortality records.

Kentucky’s second annual sandhill crane hunting season is officially underway. 332 hunters were granted permits to bag two birds each.  The season will last until Jan. 13, or until 400 birds are killed. Rocky Pritchert is a migratory bird specialist for the Division of Fish and Wildlife. The initial plan is for sandhill crane hunting to last at least three years, and Pritchert says the state evaluates the results of the hunt every year.

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Kentucky officials say curtailing prescription-pill abuse will suffer a major setback if a wave of generic painkillers reaches the market without safeguards. OxyContin and Opana ER patents are set to expire next year allowing for generic versions of the powerful drugs. The brand-name painkillers were popular sources for abusers until tamper-resistant formulas were added.

Mike Bender/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wikimedia Commons

Kentucky hunters killed 11 black bears last weekend, including one that set a record for its size. Doug Adkins of Jenkins killed the state-record bear estimated at more than 450 pounds in Letcher County. All the bears killed came from Harlan and Letcher counties. The hunting season was scheduled to continue through Monday but wildlife officials closed it down Sunday night because hunters killed the maximum number of bears.

Flu Widespread in KY

Dec 12, 2012
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has upped Kentucky’s flu level from regional to widespread, the highest tier. That means at least half of all regions in the state have reported a flu outbreak. Purchase District Public Health Director Kent Koster says the best ways to stay well are getting a flu vaccination and keeping your hands clean.

“We are within the last two weeks seeing more of those being reported to the health department,” he says.

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Kentucky’s latest round of tax amnesty is coming to a close and state officials say the program has been a success. Beginning last month, the state offered tax delinquents a chance to pay what they owe and a portion of the related penalties without fear of further punishment or prosecution. Lawmakers hope to collect $55 million before the program ends at 9 p.m. Friday. Department of Revenue Commissioner Thomas Miller told lawmakers Thursday that his office has recovered tax revenue from people in all 120 counties of the Commonwealth and in all 50 states.

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The Kentucky Board of Education will soon reconsider its policies governing middle school athletics. A legislative task force crafted final recommendations this week, which include many policies already in place at the high school level.

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The Kentucky Department of Revenue has been getting up to 1,000 calls a day in the final week of an amnesty offer to delinquent taxpayers. The rising interest has prompted the state department to extend operating hours at 10 field offices around the state.

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 An Eddyville, Kentucky, man will be eating his Thanksgiving dinner in the Caldwell County jail today. Kentucky State Police say 45-year-old Robert Kevin Burchett fired shots at a home in Kuttawa, then fled to the Bandana community of Ballard County where they caught up with him. They’ve charged Burchett with attempted murder.

wikipedia

Smokers might have to pay more in Kentucky for cigarettes if a proposal to raise the cigarette tax passes. The Blue Ribbon Commission on Tax Reform suggests raising the tax from $.60 a pack to $1. Governor Steve Beshear appointed the tax panel earlier this year to simplify the tax code and generate enough revenue to meet the state’s needs.

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