At Least Fischer Isn’t A Xenophobe/Bigot

Good grief, you can’t even hide in the ceiling these days without getting arrested. [WDRB]

This story originally ran in late January. Twenty-one Syrian refugees will arrive in Louisville over the next two weeks, a figure expected to increase in Kentucky and beyond as the U.S. begins to take in an expanded number of refugees fleeing Syria’s bloody civil war. [C-J/AKN]

A week after the deadly terrorist attacks that rocked Paris, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is urging the community to stand in solidarity with refugees and those affected by the horrific acts. [WHAS11]

The American Civil Liberties Union says a Kentucky county clerk’s office should reissue altered marriage licenses even though the governor has promised to recognize them as valid. [H-L]

Your tax dollars are paying for Jerry Abramson’s pals to conduct media boat tours. [WLKY]

The nation’s capital is receiving a wonderful gift this holiday season. Atlanta’s Homeward Choir, a group of men from the city’s Central Night Shelter, have been invited to perform at the White House Open House Holiday Celebration on Dec. 21. [HuffPo]

As temperatures drop back into the 20s, homeless shelters across Louisville are starting Operation White Flag. [WAVE3]

First-hand accounts like this won’t deter pandering bigots like Rand Paul and Matt Bevin. Until last year, I was one of 4.3 million people at the mercy of the legal immigration system, waiting for the chance to stay in the U.S. for good. [BuzzFeed]

A group of about 80 people gathered on Friday afternoon to call on the Jefferson Commonwealth’s Attorney to cease his efforts to have Jefferson Circuit Judge Olu Stevens removed from all criminal cases pending before him. [WFPL]

NPR’s Rachel Martin speaks with Anne Richard, Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration, about the screening process refugees go through before entering the United States. [NPR]

The Louisville Arena Authority has a new member and a new chairman after the resignation earlier this month of chairman Larry Hayes. [Business First]

Sheriff Frank Loop said he had no idea the Floyd County Animal Control Board voted Thursday to suspend services to residents living outside the city limits for the rest of 2015. [News & Tribune]

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UofL Continues Series Of Hot Garbage Fires

In the span of less than two hours Wednesday afternoon, the University of Louisville announced that its Board of Trustees executive committee would have a closed-door meeting Thursday morning — then said the committee would not meet after all. [WDRB]

Amid a national push for more openness in law enforcement, the Louisville Metro Police Department has decided to regularly share information on such subjects as violent crime, crime victims, police shootings and assaults on officers. [C-J/AKN]

Wondering why your neighbor is snowed into hype about compassion? It’s because media outlets run crap like this, unchecked, as if it’s gospel. Mayor Greg Fischer is celebrating Louisville’s status as a compassionate city. [WHAS11]

More than $3 million has been awarded to provide heroin and prescription drug abuse treatment for Kentucky jail inmates and for an injectable treatment designed to prevent relapse as offenders leave custody. [H-L]

Maybe Louisville should try the same thing? The Lexington Parking Authority is giving people the opportunity to pay off parking tickets with food. [WLKY]

Top Republicans’ growing support for privatization of the Department of Veterans Affairs health care system is frightening some veterans groups. [HuffPo]

The name of a man who was shot and killed Tuesday night in a Dixie Highway Taco Bell parking lot during dinner time has been released. [WAVE3]

America’s poorest white town: abandoned by coal, swallowed by drugs. In the first of a series of dispatches from the US’s poorest communities, we visit Beattyville, Kentucky, blighted by a lack of jobs and addiction to ‘hillbilly heroin’. [The Guardian]

If each U.S. state were its own country, Kentucky would have the seventh-highest incarceration rate in the world, according to a recent analysis by the Prison Policy Initiative. [WFPL]

Matthew Barzun, the American ambassador to the Court of St. James’s, stood before a buzzing, boisterous audience of several hundred teenagers in a poor borough on the southern edge of greater London and asked them what frustrated or concerned them the most about the United States. [NY Times]

Just wait til we start talking about affairs and sex scandals at LWC… Louisville Water Co. president and CEO Jim Brammell announced Wednesday that he will retire from the position, effective Jan. 1. [Business First]

While tentative tolling rates for the Ohio River Bridges Project have been set for almost two years, some details have yet to be finalized. For some, those details could make all the difference. [News & Tribune]

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Stumbo Lackey Wants To Be Pretzeldent

Need cheap mobile phone service? Maybe even for a backup cell phone? I’m talking $6/mo cheap? Use our Ting referral code and we’ll all get a sweet credit. [Ting]

The Centers for Disease Control is in Scott County, Indiana, testing hundreds of people for HIV. [WDRB]

This should be an awkward Greg Stumbo-style disaster. David Yates is jumping into the race for Metro Council president next year in an effort to unify Louisville Democrats, suggesting incumbent David Tandy is losing support among the splintered majority caucus. [C-J/AKN]

The search is on for a murder suspect police say shot and killed a man near a Valley Station business Tuesday evening. [WHAS11]

Lexington’s police department hopes to have its officers equipped with body cameras by June. [H-L]

A pedestrian was struck and killed by an LMPD wrecker in the 4900 block of Southside Drive. [WLKY]

As friends and family gathered Tuesday at the funeral of Tyshawn Lee — one of the youngest Chicago residents lost to gun violence this year — to mourn and remember the boy, Father Michael Pfleger delivered a fiery eulogy indicting the city over the execution of a 9-year-old child. [HuffPo]

Here comes the positive media spin from Chad Carlton and crew about tolls. And whattya know, they couldn’t even get the facts straight about when the area last saw tolls. [WAVE3]

The last time Kentucky elected a Republican governor he ran into trouble with the Democratic attorney general. [Ronnie Ellis]

A new report says more than one in 10 babies are born premature in Kentucky. The state has a premature birth rate of 10.7 percent, ranking it 38th in the U.S., according to the 2015 Premature Birth Rate Report Card. The report gave Kentucky a “D” grade for its premature birth rate. [WFPL]

In its ongoing Failure Factories series, the Tampa Bay Times is investigating the disastrous effects of the Pinellas County School Board’s 2007 decision to abandon school integration in favor of “neighborhood schools.” Schools in high-poverty black communities were promised additional funding and resources. Then the promises weren’t met, and performance at the schools has plummeted. [ProPublica]

An organization led by Louisville’s high-profile rehabilitation king Gill Holland has recently received $250,000 in private funding. [Business First]

New police body camera video shows a struggle during an arrest in Clarksville for which a local business owner was later found not guilty. [News & Tribune]

West End Methane Plant Fun Continues

On Tuesday, voters in Clark County voted in resounding fashion to quash a move to bring in millions of extra tax dollars to improve school buildings. [WDRB]

Nature’s Methane is offering a coalition of western Louisville leaders and organizations around $5 million in gifts and investments as it tries to move forward with its plan to build a controversial methane plant fueled by food waste in the California neighborhood, according to several sources familiar with the negotiations. [C-J/AKN]

Pat Mulvihill has been elected to the job of 10th district councilman. He’s ready to help his constituents, but unlike his predecessor, the embattled Economy Inn won’t be his top priority. [WHAS11]

The latest report on coal production and employment in Kentucky reinforces how far and fast the industry has fallen. [H-L]

The date has been set for the public celebration on the Downtown Bridge. [WLKY]

The long-awaited text of a landmark U.S.-backed Pacific trade deal was released on Thursday, revealing the details of a pact aimed at freeing up commerce in 40 percent of the world’s economy but criticized for its opacity. [HuffPo]

Patrick Mulvihill may be serving the shortest term of any local political elected Tuesday, but he says he plans to make the most of it. [WAVE3]

ProPublica and Frontline reopen the investigation into a death squad run by former South Vietnamese military men that killed journalists, torched businesses and intimidated those who challenged its dream of re-starting the Vietnam War — all on American soil. [ProPublica]

AT&T has filed a protest against a Kentucky state government project to expand broadband fiber throughout the state. The telecommunications giant claims KentuckyWired has an unfair advantage in the bidding process. In its protest, AT&T states KentuckyWired “almost certainly has confidential, inside information that no other bidder could have.” AT&T said KentuckyWired Executive Director Steve Rucker was deputy secretary of the state’s Finance and Administration Cabinet when the agency started developing its request for proposal. [WFPL]

America is undergoing a religious polarization. With more adults shedding their religious affiliations, as evidenced in the latest from the Pew Research Center, the country is becoming more secular. In the past seven years, using the new Pew data, Americans who identify with a religion declined six points. Overall, belief in God, praying daily and religious service attendance have all dropped since 2007. [WaPo]

Shares of Louisville-based Papa John’s International Inc. plunged Wednesday, following the company’s third-quarter earnings report yesterday. By the end of the trading day, shares were down $8.22 per share, or 12.08 percent, to $59.83. [Business First]

Clark County election results were left open-ended into early morning Wednesday as close to 1,000 absentee ballots were in question countywide because a voting machine couldn’t read them. [News & Tribune]

UofL Loves Flushing Cash Down The Drain

Here’s a lesson in stupid lawsuits that draw even more attention to a scandal you wish would go away. [WDRB]

With Halloween approaching, the mansion for the University of Louisville president in the Cherokee Triangle is once again decorated for the holiday, and President James Ramsey and his wife, Jane, may hand out treats to trick-or-treaters on Halloween night Saturday as they have in the past. [C-J/AKN]

WHAS11 and the Center for Women and Families are teaming up for a new challenge. [WHAS11]

Lexington could be poised to become the second city in Kentucky to increase the minimum wage. [H-L]

The attorney for the woman at the center of Louisville basketball’s recruitment sex scandal answered questions on local radio. [WLKY]

Tuberculosis has joined HIV/AIDS as the top infectious disease killer on the planet, the World Health Organization announced Wednesday. [HuffPo]

The downtown bridge project is one step closer to being completed. The bridge is officially connected from river bank to river bank across the Ohio. [WAVE3]

A group of nearly 40 representatives, from the Congressional Black, Hispanic, and Asian Pacific American Caucuses, wrote to Attorney General Loretta Lynch Wednesday morning, requesting that the Department of Justice do more to address gun violence in minority communities across the country. [Mother Jones]

The Louisville Water Company has finished the phase-out of two hazardous chemicals that were stored at both of the company’s water treatment plants. [WFPL]

A panel of medical experts said on Friday the prices of prescription medicines in the United States need to be brought in line with the value they bring to patients instead of continuing to let drugmakers set any price they choose. [Reuters]

The U.S. Department of Justice says AB Electrolux is stonewalling it in its fight over the GE Appliances merger, according to a report by legal site Law360. [Business First]

Construction on the renovated Jeffersonville marina — now called Fisherman’s Wharf — is complete, according to an announcement. [News & Tribune]

Some Funtimes (Not Really) Bridge News

Here’s the big bridge news from Papaw Steve Beshear today (from a release):

Speaking from the deck of the new Interstate 65 bridge in downtown Louisville, Gov. Steve Beshear announced today the bridge will open to two-way traffic ahead of schedule.

“In January, I stood at the base of this massive project and announced we were accelerating the schedule,” Gov. Beshear said. “Today, I’m walking on this beautiful new bridge and telling you we’re moving even faster than expected. Drivers will get an early present – you will be driving on the new bridge by Christmas!”

An exact date for the opening of the new bridge will be determined closer to that date. Gov. Beshear said the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and crews with Walsh Construction are on budget and ahead of schedule. Officials are confident the bridge will be ready to carry traffic before Dec. 25.


Gov. Beshear was joined by Indiana Lieutenant Governor Sue Ellspermann, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Jeffersonville (Indiana) Mayor Mike Moore for the progress announcement. Each signed a golden bolt, some of the final bolts that will be put into place on the deck of the new bridge.

Everyone is super-excited to start paying tolls.