Republican state Rep. Ben Waide indicted
FRANKFORT (AP) — A state representative was indicted on two counts of violating state campaign finance laws for accepting $10,000 from a company and illegally reimbursing himself $6,000 from his campaign account, the state attorney general announced Tuesday.
Forest “Ben” Waide, 51, was accused of accepting $10,000 in campaign contributions from Liberty Rehabilitation, where he is a partner. State law bars candidates from knowingly accepting contributions from corporations.
Waide is also charged with reimbursing himself $6,000 from his campaign account for expenses he did not incur, Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway said. Waide, a Republican, is not running for re-election.
Attempts to reach Waide for comment were unsuccessful.
“The charges are only accusations, and Rep. Waide is presumed innocent until proven guilty,” House Republican Floor Leader Jeff Hoover said in a news release.
Waide’s indictment will not affect the control of the state House of Representatives, where Democrats have a five-seat majority over the Republicans. Waide did not file for re-election after being drawn out of his district during the redistricting process.
Social worker faces drug, misconduct charges
LEXINGTON (AP) — Police say a Lexington social worker is accused of using a child as a bargaining tool for discounts on illegal drugs.
Media report officers arrested Chad Albert Buckley on Tuesday and charged him with conspiracy to traffic a controlled substance, official misconduct and bribery of a public servant.
According to police, Buckley made a deal with a child’s parent to pay $30 cash, a $25 gift card and allow a home visit in exchange for four Oxycontin pills.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether Buckley, who works for the Kentucky Cabinet of Health and Family Services, has an attorney.
Century-old church burns down
LITTLE CREEK (AP) — The Kentucky State Fire Marshal is investigating what caused an eastern Kentucky church more than a century old to catch fire and burn down.
WYMT-TV in Hazard reported a Kentucky State Police arson investigator also visited the site of Yeager Church of Christ in the Little Creek Community of Pike County. The building caught fire early Saturday morning.
By Wednesday, all that remained of the church was a pile of ashes and twisted metal.
Church member Clyde Stiltner says the building had no power in the building.
U of L cheerleader found dead in apartment
LOUISVILLE (AP) — A University of Louisville cheerleader has been found dead in an apartment near campus.
The university said the body of 22-year-old Danielle Cogswell was found Monday in an apartment at Cardinal Towne, an off-campus, privately operated student housing complex affiliated with U of L.
Louisville police spokesman Dwight Mitchell said the death did not appear to be the result of foul play.
The Courier-Journal reported that law enforcement officials have said they are awaiting results of an autopsy and toxicology tests.
The newspaper said Cogswell was a transfer student from Arizona State who grew up in Washington and had been a cheerleader at U of L for a year.
U of L’s head spirit coach, Todd Sharp, said he recruited her to Louisville and described her as “one of the top athletes” in the program.
McConnell to campaign in eastern Kentucky
FRANKFORT (AP) — Republican Rep. Hal Rogers will campaign with Sen. Mitch McConnell next week in eastern Kentucky.
Rogers will join McConnell on a two day, 10 county bus tour Aug. 7 and 8 through Kentucky’s coal country. McConnell is running for re-election against Democrat challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes in a race that has focused largely on coal-related issues.
McConnell’s bus tour will come one day after former President Bill Clinton is scheduled to campaign with Grimes in eastern Kentucky.
Grimes and McConnell are locked in one of the closest Senate races in the country. The winner could help determine which party controls the Senate. Democrats have an eight-seat margin in the Senate. Republicans control the House of Representatives.
New Grimes ad hits McConnell on women’s issues
FRANKFORT (AP) — A new statewide TV ad from Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes criticizes Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell for his voting record on women’s issues.
The ad features Ilene Woods from Lynch asking McConnell why he voted twice against the Violence Against Women Act and the Paycheck Fairness Act. The Violence Against Women Act passed anyway. The Paycheck Fairness Act has not passed.
In the ad — which will run statewide — Grimes said McConnell must be forgetting that over half the voters in Kentucky are women.
McConnell did vote for a different version of the Violence Against Women Act in 2013, one that was criticized for not protecting the LGBT community. He said he opposed the Paycheck Fairness Act because it eliminated the statute of limitations on pay discrimination cases.
EKU joins Video Games Alliance
RICHMOND (AP) — Eastern Kentucky University has joined the Higher Education Video Games Alliance to boost academic program in video game development.
Eastern’s Department of Computer Science offers a bachelor’s degree concentration in interactive multimedia. Associate Professor George Landon says membership in the alliance will give Eastern a chance to work with other game development programs to try to keep improving.
The university says the concentration includes courses in game design, 3D modeling, game engine design and mobile application development. There’s also a capstone course in which teams of students step through the entire game development process to develop their products.
Landon says the university’s Gaming Institute opens this fall, focusing on research, development and publication of games.
For more information about the program, visit http://www.computerscience.eku.edu . For more information about the alliance, visit http://www.higheredgames.org .
Freezer company creating jobs in Kentucky
ELKTON (AP) — A manufacturer of custom coolers and freezers has expanded to Todd County in southern Kentucky.
Gov. Steve Beshear’s office says Custom Cooler Inc. is creating 75 jobs and investing nearly $5.8 million in the manufacturing facility.
The project is Custom Cooler’s second manufacturing facility in the U.S.
The 117,000-square-foot operation in Todd County will serve customers throughout the eastern and central United States and internationally.
Beshear’s office says Kentucky beat out three other states for the investment.
Custom Cooler was established in California in 2006. It serves more than 300 domestic and international customers in the food industry.
To encourage the investment, the state gave preliminary approval for the company to receive performance-based tax incentives of up to $1.5 million.
Noah’s Ark tax incentive passes first hurdle
FRANKFORT (AP) — Noah’s Ark could get some help from Kentucky taxpayers.
A state tourism board gave preliminary approval on Tuesday for up to $18 million in tax rebates for a proposed full-sized replica of Noah’s Ark as described in the book of Genesis. An independent consultant will now study the feasibility of the project and make a recommendation for the board to consider.
If approved, organizers could receive up to 25 percent of the $73 million anticipated cost of the project. Organizers would receive the money over 10 years only after the ark is built and open to the public.
Organizers say they have enough money to begin building the Ark, which will be 510 feet long and 85 feet high. The ark is scheduled to open by the summer of 2016.