Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet's Project to Replace Two Bridges

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s project to replace two bridges on KY 1426 at Bent Branch begins next week. The road will be closed to through traffic at the work site, which is between Cabin Knoll and Scott Fork. One bridge is above and one is below the building, which used to be the IGA/Johns Creek Grocery.


“There is access to US 119 on either side of the work zone,” said Paxton Weddington, Highway District 12’s Resident Engineer on the project . “School buses and other through traffic will have a short detour on US 119 from one side of the work zone to the other.”


Bush and Burchett was awarded the low bid contract for $1,036,595.80. Paul Burchett said that the Scott Fork bridge will be replaced first, with demolition of the old bridge scheduled to begin Monday, February 2nd, weather permitting.


The Cabin Knoll bridge involves relocation of a water line before construction starts.


Completion date required on the contract is December 1, 2015, but the contractor’s planned schedule shows that work could be finished as early as the first week of September.


Monday, January 26, 2015

State police has trooper shortage

Kentucky State Police is about 100 troopers short of its authorized staffing level, due in part to retirements and challenges in finding recruits.

The agency currently has 910 troopers, including 69 new trainees that graduated last week.

Trooper Paul Blanton at state police headquarters in Frankfort said a recent cadet class had 63 graduates, but there were 62 trooper retirements during the cadet training period.

Blanton says there are also challenges in recruiting eligible applicants, and readying a new cadet class takes a long time.

He says some applicants, like those who have visible tattoos, get disqualified at the start. Still others who become troopers leave the KSP for other law enforcement agencies.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Stumbo to push for release of LRC audit report

Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo says he will push for the release of a nine-month-old performance audit of the Legislative Research Commission.

Stumbo said Friday that he's asking LRC leaders in the House and Senate to put the audit's release on the agenda for their Feb. 4 meeting.

He was responding to an Open Records Act request filed this week by the Lexington Herald-Leader.

A firm was hired last year to audit the agency's performance in response to several scandals, including sexual harassment complaints that forced the resignation of state Rep. John Arnold.

A report from the audit company came in April, but legislative leaders have refused to release it. Leaders have called that report a draft, making it exempt from the Open Records Act.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Kentucky Power told to refund $13M to Eastern Kentucky customers

The Kentucky Public Service Commission has ordered Kentucky Power to refund about $13 million in over-charges to customers.

The PSC also barred the electric provider from collecting $41 million in additional fuel costs that were to be taken in through May.

The refund will be in the form of credits on future bills. A statement from Attorney General Jack Conway's office says the average residential customer would save about $155 over a 17-month period.

The PSC also criticized Kentucky Power for failing to disclose additional fuel costs for ratepayers after the 50-percent interest purchase of the Mitchell power plant in West Virginia.

Floyd County House Fire Injures one

One person was taken to an area hospital following a Floyd County house fire.

According to officials with the Garrett Fire Department, the house was fully engulfed by the time firefighters arrived.

Authorities say the owner of the house went to the hospital for burns and smoke inhalation.

The investigation continues into what caused the blaze.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Kentucky State Police Post 9 Welcomes 16 New Troopers

Kentucky State Police Post 9, Pikeville welcomes 16 new Troopers to the Post 9 family. 

On Friday January 16, 2015, Kentucky State Police Academy presented diplomas to 69 new Troopers at ceremonies held in Frankfort. These 69 Troopers began their 23 week academy process on August 03, 2014, and graduated as the 92nd Kentucky State Police academy class.
The 16 graduates assigned to Post 09 are as follows:
Marty Adams
Mark Branham
Michael Coleman
Jonathan Corey
Mason Flynn
Casey Goodsell
Jordan Grevious
Jeffrey Johnson
Dackery Larkey
Bradford Martin
Colbert Maynard
Matthew Mihalik
Samuel Reed
Daniel Saylor
Jacob Spurlock
Sheldon Thomas
Post 9 Pikeville is eager to introduce the new Troopers to the communities they will serve.

Defense opposes longer sentence in Morgan Judge-Exec case

Defense attorneys are objecting to a prosecutor's request to send an eastern Kentucky judge-executive to prison in a corruption case for more time than federal guidelines suggest.

Morgan County Judge-Executive Tim Conley pleaded guilty in August to fraud. Court records indicate he received at least $130,000 in kickbacks from a contractor between 2009 and 2013.

Prosecutors said the scheme continued as the town struggled to rebuild from a deadly March 2012 tornado.

Under federal advisory guidelines, Conley's top sentence would be seven years and three months, but assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew T. Boone has requested a sentence of 11 years and four months.

Sentencing is set for Jan. 27.