News Around the State

Ky. GOP files ethics complaint against Grimes

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — The Republican Party of Kentucky has filed an ethics complaint against Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.

The complaint says Grimes is not complying with a previous ruling from the Executive Branch Ethics Commission. RPK Executive Director Sarah Van Wallaghen wrote in a complaint filed Friday that a commission opinion from 2010 stated the Secretary of State does not have access to the statewide voter registration database.

Last week, the Kentucky State Board of Elections reaffirmed Grimes’ access to the database. Van Wallaghen wrote in a letter to the commission Grimes’ actions have raised concerns about the security of the November elections.

Grimes has said she needs access to the database for her job as the state’s chief election officer. She called previous complaints against her politically motivated.

State expands efforts to help people give up tobacco

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Public health officials in Kentucky have launched another phase of their campaign to help people who want to give up tobacco.

Officials say the new public information campaign by the Department for Public Health includes broadcast, print and digital ads. It also features outreach to medical providers and community engagement initiatives aimed at boosting public awareness of the campaign.

The program already offers a free tobacco quit line — 1-800-QUIT NOW. The statewide telephone service provides free counseling and support for people wanting to stop smoking or using other tobacco products.

Kentucky has the nation’s second-highest smoking rate, with 24.6 percent of the state’s residents reporting daily tobacco use. The state’s public health department says more than 8,000 Kentuckians die each year due to tobacco-related diseases, including lung cancer.

Hundreds of pot-bellied pigs seized from Ky. farm

FALMOUTH, Ky. (AP) — Authorities have seized hundreds of pot-bellied pigs from a farm in northern Kentucky.

News outlets report rescue groups are pitching in to find homes for more than 450 pigs after the state seized them last week from a farm in Falmouth. Most of the pigs are malnourished and some are pregnant.

Farm owner Lori Tristan says she had started a rescue operation but realized she could not care for that many animals.

Rescue group officials say they’re hoping donations will help offset the cost of veterinary care and to relocate the animals.

Red Cross to unveil emergency response vehicle in Ky.

ASHLAND, Ky. (AP) — The American Red Cross plans to unveil a new emergency response vehicle in Kentucky.

Kentucky Power says in a news release a ceremony is set for Wednesday at the Ashland Fire Department.

The statement says the vehicle is being funded with a $150,000 grant from the American Electric Power Foundation.

The Red Cross uses emergency response vehicles to provide food, water, blankets, cots, personal hygiene kits and other assistance. The new vehicle also can be used as a mobile feeding station.

Yarmuth pledges $10K to UofL student newspaper

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth has pledged $10,000 to support the University of Louisville’s student newspaper.

The gift kicks off a fundraising campaign to save The Louisville Cardinal. The university announced last year it would cease funding for the publication, which has enough money to operate through the fall semester.

The newspaper will get Yarmuth’s donation only if it can raise $10,000 to match it. They got a good start when former U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom Matthew Barzun donated $5,000. Barzun recently purchased Louisville Magazine.

The Cardinal Board of Directors chairwoman Jenni Laidman said she was overwhelmed by both gifts. She encouraged people to donate by visiting louisvillecardinal.com and clicking the “donate” button.

Yarmuth is running for re-election. Republican Vicki Yates Brown Glisson is opposing him.

Archaeology events planned in September

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Two family-friendly archaeology events are scheduled in Kentucky this month.

The Kentucky Heritage Council says Living Archaeology Weekend will be held Sept. 22 at Gladie Visitor Center in the Red River Gorge area of Daniel Boone National Forest. It will feature demonstrations of Native American and pioneer life, including corn grinding, blacksmithing, hide tanning and open-hearth cooking.

Kentucky State Parks said Wickliffe Mounds State Historic Site in western Kentucky is hosting an archaeology event the same day. It will feature demonstrations and activities including a mock excavation for children, spear and atlatl throwing and pottery making. In addition, there will be a presentation featuring culinary traditions of early native tribes using modern day techniques.

The Kentucky Heritage Council also will post a blog about archaeology during the month of September.