Kentucky News Now – April 14th 2016
Kentucky governor signs off on single marriage license form
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky's governor has signed a bill creating one marriage license form for gay and straight couples in the state, where a county clerk was jailed for refusing to issue licenses to same-sex couples.
Gov. Matt Bevin said Wednesday his signature brings "statutory finality to the marriage license dilemma." He said it allows county clerks to follow the law without compromising their religious liberty.
The legislation is a response to Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, who spent five days in jail last year for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples based on her religious beliefs. Davis said she couldn't issue the licenses because they had her name on them.
The new form won't have the clerk's name on it.
Bevin signed the bill with no fanfare in his Capitol office in Frankfort.
Prepaid cellphone customers face extra fee to support 911
Prepaid cellphone customers in Kentucky will pay an extra 93 cents to support local 911 emergency services under a bill signed into law by Gov. Matt Bevin.
The extra fee will be assessed every time those customers purchase minutes.
Another bill signed by the governor on Wednesday sweetens an economic incentives package aimed at swaying AK Steel to rejuvenate idled operations at its Ashland steel mill.
The bills are among dozens of measures signed into law by Bevin in recent days.
So far, the Republican governor has vetoed four bills and parts of a fifth measure.
Ohio Co. voters reject legalizing countywide alcohol sales
HARTFORD, Ky. (AP) — Ohio County voters have struck down a measure that would have legalized alcohol sales there countywide.
Media outlets report the vote Tuesday wrapped up a year of sometimes heated exchanges between groups for and against legal sales in Ohio County. Voters chose to maintain a dry status by about a 7 percent margin, or 339 votes.
Ohio County Clerk Bess Tichenor Ralph says voter turnout slightly more than 27 percent, almost half what she had predicted.
Beaver Dam, the county's largest city, voted to allow alcohol sales on Feb. 2. The results of the two elections legally act independently of each other, and Beaver Dam will begin alcohol sales later this year.
State law stipulates that the issue of sales in the county cannot go on a ballot for another three years.
Peabody, largest US coal miner, seeks bankruptcy protection
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Peabody Energy, the nation's largest coal miner, filed for bankruptcy protection Wednesday as a crosscurrent of environmental, technological and economic changes wreak havoc across the industry.
Mines and offices at Peabody, a company founded in 1833 by 24-year-old Francis S. Peabody, will continue to operate as it moves through the bankruptcy process. However, Peabody's planned sale of its New Mexico and Colorado assets were terminated after the buyer was unable to complete the deal.
The bankruptcy filing comes less than three months after another from Arch Coal, the country's second-largest miner, which followed bankruptcy filings from Alpha Natural Resources, Patriot Coal and Walter Energy.
Official: Hardin Co. Schools bus driver may have had seizure
ELIZABETHTOWN, Ky. (AP) — A Hardin County Schools official says the driver of a bus that crashed into a home with 50 children on board appeared to have a seizure.
HCS Community Relations Specialist John Wright tells the News-Enterprise (http://bit.ly/1SamkSf) that recorded video from inside the bus revealed 38-year-old Jennifer Leon appeared to have a seizure just before the crash on Monday.
Wright previously told media outlets that some students had cuts and bruises, but none were seriously injured.
He says the district is waiting for official medical confirmation from physicians regarding whether Leon had a seizure. After that, district officials will decide whether Leon will drive a bus again for the district.
Holders of commercial driver's licenses must be medically certified as physically qualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle.
FORT CAMPBELL-SCHOOL PRINCIPAL
Fort Campbell assistant principal reassigned
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A published report says the assistant principal at Fort Campbell High School has been reassigned after the district superintendent met with the garrison commander at the Army post on the Kentucky-Tennessee border.
The Leaf-Chronicle reports it obtained an email showing that garrison commander Col. Rob Salome asked Superintendent Frank Calvano to take "significant action" against assistant principal Demetrius Thomas. The request stemmed from conversations Thomas had involving the wife and child of a brigadier general.
A statement on Tuesday from the Department of Defense Education Activity says Calvano made the decision to discipline Thomas "independently." It said installation's chain of command "has no role or influence" over school personnel decisions.
Thomas was initially reassigned to a different school, but has since been assigned to work at the district office.
CHILD PORN CHARGES
Man who asked deputy to fix computer faces child porn counts
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky man is facing child porn charges after asking a sheriff's deputy to fix his computer.
The Daily News reports that 63-year-old William Breece Dudley was indicted on four counts of possession of child pornography.
According to records from the Warren County Sheriff's Department, Deputy Robert Boyden said he was trying to repair Dudley's laptop computer when he saw a list of files from a server known for child porn that were infected by a virus. After seeing images, Boyden contacted a supervisor and officials executed a search warrant, which led to charges.
Warren County Sheriff's Department spokesman Stephen Harmon said the two men were acquaintances and that Boyden has some IT knowledge.
It wasn't immediately clear whether Dudley has an attorney. He told police he thought someone else infected his laptop with child porn.
KENTUCKY DERBY TROPHY
Trophy for winner of 142nd Kentucky Derby arriving at track
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — With the Kentucky Derby a little more than three weeks away, the 14-karat gold trophy to be presented to the winner's owner has arrived at Churchill Downs.
The trophy was created by a team that has made it since 1975. Artisans Bill Juaire and Susanne Blackinton-Juaire of LeachGarner, who are husband and wife, delivered the trophy Wednesday for the 142nd Kentucky Derby.
Three smaller, sterling silver versions of the trophy will be presented to the winning trainer, jockey and breeder, respectively.
The winner's trophy is 22 inches tall and weighs about 65 ounces, excluding its jade base. For the 75th, 100th and 125th runnings, the trophy included a mantle of roses fashioned from rubies and emeralds and a horseshoe filled with diamonds.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.