News Around the State

Equine, poultry gains lead Ky. agriculture in 2018

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Agricultural economists say Kentucky’s farm cash receipts stayed relatively stable this year, due in part to continued gains in the horse and poultry industries.

The University of Kentucky ag economists said Thursday that higher yields for most crops helped offset lower prices hitting some sectors.

They say statewide ag cash receipts in 2018 are forecast at $5.7 billion, matching last year’s level. But the projection remains well below the record statewide high of $6.5 billion in 2014. And the economists don’t foresee a rebound in Kentucky’s ag cash receipts next year.

Kentucky’s renowned horse industry is expected to lead the pack with a 10 percent increase in cash receipts this year. But poultry production is expected to keep its perch as Kentucky’s top agricultural enterprise, accounting for 21 percent of projected 2018 sales.

Digital forensic lab to open at Eastern Kentucky University

RICHMOND, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky State Police and Eastern Kentucky University plan to announce the opening of a new digital forensics lab.

A joint statement says police and the school have partnered to open the new lab in Richmond at EKU’s Memorial Science Building. It says it’s meant to supplement the Kentucky State Police Electronic Crime Branch forensic lab in Frankfort. A ribbon cutting and open house are planned for Friday afternoon.

Officials said the satellite digital forensics laboratory will be used to process evidence more efficiently while also providing advanced educational opportunities to EKU students.

Kentucky American Water seeks to raise rate by 22 percent

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky American Water is seeking to increase its overall rate by 22 percent, which would generate about $19.8 million per year.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reported Wednesday that the utility company has filed a rate increase application with the state Public Service Commission. A company statement says it has spent more than $100 million on infrastructure upgrades and needs the rate increase to pay for them.

The company seeks to increase residential customer rates by 24 percent, or about $7.50 per month. It seeks to raise commercial property rates by 28 percent, or about $46 per month. The company last filed for a rate increase in 2016, and the PSC granted it an overall rate increase of 7.2 percent. The company serves 14 counties in central Kentucky.

Man, son die in vehicle left running in garage

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Police say a Kentucky father and son are dead and another child is in critical condition after the man left his vehicle running in a garage in an apparent attempt to keep warm on a cold morning.

Louisville Police Department spokeswoman Lt. Emily McKinley told news outlets the father left a vehicle running in a closed garage on Wednesday and it appears the family was overcome by carbon monoxide gas.

When the father didn’t show up for work, police say a family member discovered the three in the garage and called 911. The man and his 3-year-old son were pronounced dead at the scene and his 7-year-old daughter was rushed to a children’s hospital.

McKinley said it appears to be a tragic accident. Police warn that carbon monoxide poisoning can happen quickly in closed spaces.

Police fatally shoot man during gunfire exchange

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Police say officers responding to a domestic disturbance in Kentucky exchanged gunfire with a man at the scene killing him.

Louisville Police Chief Steve Conrad told news outlets that officers “encountered deadly force” Wednesday night when they got into a confrontation with the man and “responded to defend themselves.” He said shots were exchanged and the man was killed.

Conrad said Louisville officers are trained to try to de-escalate situations if possible, but he wasn’t sure whether officers had the opportunity to do that in this situation.

Police haven’t identified the man who was shot or the officers involved.