Fischer’s New Letter Re: FOP Mess

Here’s Greg Fischer’s letter:

Monday, June 22, 2015

Dear colleagues,

A recent letter by FOP President Dave Mutchler highlighted some of the very real challenges you face as law enforcement officers. When we sign up for public service, we are held to a high standard and at times face criticism — some of it constructive and reasonable, some of it dishonest or unfair, all of it allowed under the First Amendment.

Sergeant Mutchler also has a First Amendment right to speak his mind. However, responsible dialogue must be made with sensitivity to community relations, historical challenges, the raw and emotional time our city and nation find themselves in, and the recognition that words can have real consequences.

For many, it was hard not to interpret Mr. Mutchler’s letter as threatening. While he said that was not his intention, he used language that made many people fearful and defensive. Furthermore, some of his statements have the potential to undue (sic) years of the Louisville Metro Police Department’s work to develop thoughtful and constructive relationships with community members. That is why I rebuked his letter last week.

While I disagree with some of Mr. Mutchler’s words, I want to be absolutely clear in my support for LMPD, and my understanding of the even more difficult task of policing in the post-Ferguson world, as well as the importance of LMPD protecting every one of our citizens’ constitutional rights.

Through my regular interaction with LMPD and the community, I know we can be a model city for balancing the difficult work of policing and community activism. In order to advance that critical work, and protect not only our community members but also protect you, I will continue to speak strongly against any words or acts that potentially lead toward unrest.

I remain inspired and proud of our force, and will continue to do all I can to lift up, advance and promote your good work.

Sincerely,

Greg Fischer

Strong words from the mayor to the LMPD.

Meanwhile, Mutchler still hasn’t responded to the Human Relations Commission’s Advocacy Board.

Fischer Finally Kicks Ass, Takes Names

Read part of the statement from the mayor & police chief:

Mr. Mutchler, in separate phone calls with both of us prior to his news conference, said he was seeking to clarify his position, strike a constructive tone, and emphasize that no person of good will should feel threatened in our city. After listening to his press conference remarks, we remain concerned that Mr. Mutchler, with the leadership position he holds, does not understand the impact of the tone of his remarks and original letter.

The threatening tone is not representative of the vast majority of our officers or our citizens — and many have told us that they have a significantly differently (sic) view than Mr. Mutchler. His words do absolutely nothing to help build community-police relations and undermine the noble and difficult work our police do every day, from keeping us safe and secure in our homes to protecting our First Amendment right to speak our minds.

Almost unprecedented for Fischer to take such a strong position.

Good on him.

Fischer: Your White Privilege Is Showing

Officials have released the names of two people who were recently killed in separate incidents. [WDRB]

Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell and District Court Judge Stephanie Pearce Burke are again butting heads, this time over Burke’s handling of a case originally set for trial this week. If you haven’t kept up with this, it’s crazy. [C-J/AKN]

Greg Fischer says that if you aren’t doing anything illegal, you’ve got nothing to worry about. Which should ring hollow for just about anybody with the ability to think on their own. Those 150+ shootings are super-compassionate. Nothing to see here, puppies and rainbows. [WHAS11]

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray applauded the work of the Urban County Council in its deliberation of his proposed $323 million budget on Tuesday but declined to say if he would veto any changes council made to the budget. [H-L]

State officials plan to keep an outreach center open for one more year in a southern Indiana county that’s facing the largest HIV outbreak in state history. [WLKY]

Don’t call Chris Christie rich. The Clintons say they still have bills to pay. And Mike Huckabee? Despite his wealth, he was born “blue collar, not blue blood.” [HuffPo]

This white lady assaulted a police officer by allegedly grabbing her throat. She wasn’t arrested or shot. [WAVE3]

Roughly half of deaths from 12 smoking-related cancers may be linked directly to cigarette use, a U.S. study estimates. [Reuters]

Some would-be homebuyers in Louisville are facing tough conditions. New figures from the Greater Louisville Association of Realtors show that the number of homes available for sale is down 17 percent from last year. [WFPL]

Two years ago in the Netherlands, artist Paul de Kort designed an 81-acre park near Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport. His assignment? To use nothing but landscaping to dampen the noise of airplanes. Such a project had never been attempted—and the science behind his design was discovered almost by accident. [Gizmodo]

Commercial real estate developer William P. Butler intends to purchase Lexington, Ky.-based American Founders Bank and move its headquarters to Louisville, according to a news release from the bank. [Business First]

Contractual issues between the city and the New Albany police union could be ruled upon soon. [News & Tribune]

It’s Positive UofL Spin Time Again

Another day, another horrific death in Possibility City. Don’t worry, everything is fine, we have bike lanes in white neighborhoods. (What? We’re still not supposed to talk about the racial divide in this city?) [WDRB]

American Pharoah blew into racing immortality Saturday, his 51/2-length victory over Frosted in the Belmont Stakes making him racing’s first Triple Crown winner since 1978 and only the 12th ever to sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont. [C-J/AKN]

Greg Fischer can give away tens of millions of dollars to Cordish for literally doing nothing. He can cut WIC programs in half, which are pocket change by comparison. But he can still afford to sink $7.4 million into non-essentials — including a $300,000 swimming pool filter. [WHAS11]

Dr. David Jones is still impressed by the sight of it: A smiling fast-food worker taking the time to feed a disabled woman her favorite meal, a steak burrito. [H-L]

WARNING! RIDICULOUS AUTOPLAY VIDEO! We sadly hear this isn’t the only Trinity teacher up to no good. The school has allegedly shipped teachers off to other parts of the state when catching them up to no good in the past, as well. [WLKY]

American Pharoah has cemented his misspelled name among horse racing royalty, claiming the Triple Crown with his win at the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, a feat not done since 1978. [HuffPo]

A southern Indiana county is facing a sharp increase in hepatitis C cases, but officials say it’s too soon to seek state permission for a needle-exchange program. [WAVE3]

According to data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the leading causes of cancer death are generally the same across the country. [Click the Clicky]

Researchers at Louisville’s James Graham Brown Cancer Center have found a new way to treat advanced melanoma using the herpes simplex 1 virus. [WFPL]

Thousands gathered in St. Paul, Minnesota Saturday afternoon to march in protest of the growing network of tar sands pipelines in America, singling out one pipeline — the Alberta Clipper — in particular. [ThinkProgress]

UofL is mired in controversy so it’s time for some PR spin. The University of Louisville has found its leader for the recently announced UL Additive Manufacturing Competency Center, a partnership with UL LLC, a global safety science company. [Business First]

Health officials are still searching for “patient zero” seven months after detecting HIV among drug users in the small, rural town of Austin. [News & Tribune]

Happy Greg Fischer Rainbow Funtimes

Bank Street in Portland could become the new E. Market Street in Nulu. A new soccer stadium for the Louisville City Football Club could be built in West Louisville. [WDRB]

Louisville Metro Police have opened an in-custody death review after a man who police handcuffed late Saturday became unresponsive and died soon after. [C-J/AKN]

A salary review is underway for six top UofL officials, including president James Ramsey. [WHAS11]

Health insurance costs will probably jump by 10 percent or more next year for many Kentuckians buying coverage through Kynect, the state-run insurance exchange created under the federal Affordable Care Act. [H-L]

An activist and a University of Louisville doctor are shining light on gun violence in the city. [WLKY]

A majority of Democratic members in the House and Senate have now signed on to letters rebuking the Obama administration for expanding the practice of detaining immigrant women and children. [HuffPo]

Oh, look, people are finally realizing that Greg Fischer is an entitled d-bag. Kind of like the Brown Family found out after it was too late. [WAVE3]

American Pharoah drew the favorable post number five for the 147th running of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday when the colt looks to become the first Triple Crown winner in nearly four decades. [Reuters]

Is this the “essence and spirit” of Louisville or of every other modern building in every other generic city on earth? It’s not ugly but it’s certainly not got anything Louisville about it. [WFPL]

College admissions take a crucial factor into account that could be creating enormous racial bias, but it’s not grades or extracurricular activities or even SAT scores. It’s a student’s disciplinary record. [ThinkProgress]

The LG&E Center, the downtown office tower at 220 W. Main St., has a new owner. [Business First]

Citing more time for review, the Jeffersonville Board of Public Works has twice tabled city paving bids wherein the lowest bidder sued the city last year. [News & Tribune]

Council Holding Fischer Accountable

A bipartisan group of Louisville Metro Council members wants more information about how Mayor Greg Fischer nominates people to scores of city boards and commissions. But not David Yates — he cowardly removed his name as a sponsor. [WDRB]

How do people even have kids knowing this crap can happen? Too terrifying to think about. [C-J/AKN]

For the first time the public is seeing a second incident where a school resource officer appears to punch a middle school student. [WHAS11]

Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo is calling for a 140-mile extension of the Mountain Parkway from Prestonsburg to Beckley, W.Va., at a cost of $8 billion to $10 billion. [H-L]

WARNING! RIDICULOUS AUTOPLAY VIDEO! Police are investigating a shooting in the Shawnee neighborhood that left one man hospitalized. [WLKY]

College graduates, brace yourselves for some disappointing news. Wages for university grads are 2.5 percent lower than what they were 15 years ago, according to the latest edition of the Economic Policy Institute’s annual report on the labor market prospects of new workers. [HuffPo]

A New Albany councilman referred to a colleague as a “lying piece of (expletive)” during a debate over public prayer on Monday. Councilman Dan Coffey made the comment into an open microphone, yet denied using the curse word during a brief, tense interview after the meeting. [WAVE3]

On Wednesday, when President Barack Obama spoke at the US Coast Guard Academy’s commencement ceremony, he called climate change “an immediate risk to our national security.” In recent months, the Obama administration has repeatedly highlighted the international threats posed by global warming and has emphasized the need for the country’s national security agencies to study and confront the issue. [Mother Jones]

The Environmental Protection Agency recently announced more than $54 million in grant funds to clean up contaminated brownfields sites around the country, and one of the projects getting funding is in Louisville. [WFPL]

The lawyer for the man who alleges that Ahmed Zayat has not paid a $2 million gambling debt filed a $10 million libel suit on Monday against Zayat, the owner of American Pharoah. [NY Times]

Cecilia Henderson, the 71-year-old widow of Angel’s Envy bourbon creator Lincoln Henderson, is suing her son, saying that Wesley Henderson has “effectively stolen” her share of proceeds from a recent sale to Bacardi Ltd. [Business First]

A community that successfully addresses homelessness is a united one, according to Michael Stoops, the director of community organizing at the National Coalition for the Homeless. [News & Tribune]

Hope Henderson Doesn’t Copy Secrecy

A family is trying to figure out why their dad was stabbed at a Louisville gas station. [WDRB]

A backup power generator at a pumping station could have prevented April’s massive flooding and a big sewage spill at Louisville’s Morris Forman Water Quality Treatment Center, state officials have concluded. [C-J/AKN]

The Phoenix Hill Tavern (PHT) and Jim Porter’s Good Time Emporium closed permanently on Monday, June 1. [WHAS11]

The University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics has wrapped up a 10-year, $2.5 million donation from BB&T that will result in a new program on capitalism and funding toward the college’s $65 million renovation. But Gatton officials stepped back from the more controversial aspects of the original 2004 agreement, including a requirement for an Ayn Rand reading room, named for the novelist and free market philosopher. [H-L]

A Louisville park is hosting a night of camping in June as part of a national celebration. [WLKY]

U.S. police have shot and killed 385 people during the first five months of this year, a rate of more than two a day, the Washington Post reported on Saturday. [HuffPo]

A minister has a new plan to try to curb crime in West Louisville. [WAVE3]

It’s almost like these folks in Henderson didn’t bother talking to anyone living in the real world in Louisville. [Henderson Gleaner]

A resident must work full-time and earn at least $14.17 an hour to afford a modest two-bedroom apartment in Louisville, according to a recent study from the National Low Income Housing Coalition. [WFPL]

Among African American adults with low education and income levels, the increase in risk of heart disease or stroke associated with living in poverty is largest for women and people under age 50, according to a large new study. [Reuters]

Ford Motor Co. CEO Mark Fields said aluminum-body F-Series Super Duty Trucks will be launched next year and that the design will “wow people.” [Business First]

Parts of South Clarksville could be the next Newport, Ky., or at least a bustling addendum to the Louisville metropolitan area. [News & Tribune]