Rep. Dan Johnson's widow will run for his seat

12/14/2017 02:20 PM

Less than a day after her husband committed suicide, Rebecca Johnson announced that she will run for the 49th House District that Rep. Dan Johnson held since his 2016 election. Rebecca Johnson announced her intent in a statement to the Associated Press and other news outlets Thursday. She called her husband’s death a “high-tech lynching based on lies and half-truths,” referencing a report by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, in which a 21-year-old woman accused Dan Johnson, R-Mt. Washington,... Read more 

State Rep. Dan Johnson commits suicide

12/13/2017 09:04 PM

State Rep. Dan Johnson, who was accused of molesting a teenager in 2013, has committed suicide, WDRB News reported Wednesday. Johnson’s death comes a day after he categorically denied the allegation, which were first reported by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. fir A 21-year-old woman told the outlet that Johnson forcibly kissed her and fondled her beneath her clothes on Jan. 1, 2013, at Johnson’s church when she was 17. Bullitt County Sheriff Donnie Tinnell told WDRB that Johnson... Read more 

Medicaid officials say they expect Congress to reauthorize CHIP funding

12/13/2017 05:58 PM

FRANKFORT — Officials in Kentucky’s Department for Medicaid Services have weathered a loss of federal funds for a program meant to provide health insurance for children in low-income families, and they told lawmakers on Wednesday that they expect Congress to refinance the program. Stephen Miller, the department’s commissioner, told the Medicaid Oversight and Advisory Committee that the state has enough money for the Children’s Health Insurance Program in the short-term. Federal funding was not renewed by the start of the federal fiscal... Read more 

Rep. Dan Johnson rejects calls for resignation, denies sexual abuse allegations

12/12/2017 02:09 PM

State Rep. Dan Johnson rejected calls for his resignation from Kentucky’s House of Representatives on Tuesday and denied allegations from a 21-year-old woman that he sexually assaulted her when she was 17. Johnson, R-Mt. Washington, faced mounting pressure from leaders in the state’s Republican and Democratic parties following a report by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting detailing Maranda Richmond’s account of New Year’s Eve 2012, in which she said Johnson forcibly kissed her and fondled her beneath her clothes... Read more 

State lawmaker proposes $1 assessment per pack of cigarettes, other tobacco products to generate Medicaid dollars

12/08/2017 01:26 PM

Don’t call it a tax. That’s the message state Sen. Stephen Meredith hopes to convey in next year’s legislative session as he tries to pass a bill that would create a $1 health care reimbursement assessment on every pack of cigarettes sold in Kentucky starting Oct. 1. Meredith pre-filed the bill on Thursday. That would also apply to sales of dip, chew and snuff tobacco, and distributors would also have to pay a dollar per unit sold. Meredith, R-Leitchfield, said in a phone... Read more 

State and local government will pay nearly $800M more in pension contributions per year under new rates

12/07/2017 04:56 PM

FRANKFORT – State and local governments will be on the hook for $794 million more in pension contributions in each year of the upcoming biennium. The Kentucky Retirement Systems board of trustees approved new actuarial numbers on Thursday that increased contribution amounts for state and local governments. The Kentucky Employees Retirement System non-hazardous pension plan, which covers most state workers, saw the largest spike in employer contributions under the new numbers, moving from 50.4 percent of payroll to 83.4 percent of payroll.... Read more 

Jim Gray talks Trump and primary challenges as he continues campaign rollout

12/06/2017 06:34 PM

WINCHESTER — Lexington Mayor Jim Gray said Wednesday that he could support parts of President Donald Trump’s agenda if he’s elected to Congress, but he offered pointed criticism of the tax reform proposal that’s currently being negotiated by the U.S. House and U.S. Senate. Gray continued his campaign rollout, speaking with supporters at Clark County Fiscal Court about his decision to enter the 6th Congressional District’s Democratic primary. Four Democrats are now vying for the opportunity to face Republican Congressman... Read more 

Audit: 1,329 state workers improperly claimed voting leave time, costing state $102,000 in wages

12/05/2017 01:01 PM

More than 1,300 state workers took half the work day off to vote in the elections in 2015 and 2016, but Auditor Mike Harmon says records show they weren’t entitled to the paid voting leave they received. Harmon released a report Tuesday that says 1,329 state employees claimed four hours of voting leave to cast ballots that should not have received the benefit, costing the state more than $102,000 in lost wages. Of those workers, Harmon reported that 1,176 did not... Read more 

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray announces bid for Democratic nomination in 6th Congressional District

12/05/2017 10:33 AM

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray is seeking the Democratic nomination in the 6th Congressional District, launching his campaign in several counties throughout the central Kentucky district on Tuesday. He enters a primary field with Amy McGrath, a retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Marines; Reggie Thomas, a state senator from Lexington; and perennial candidate Geoff Young. The four are vying to take on U.S. Rep. Andy Barr, a Republican who has held the seat since 2012. Gray, who has served as Lexington’s mayor since... Read more 

McConnell touts tax reform package in Louisville hours after bill clears Senate 51-49

12/02/2017 06:10 PM

Hours after passing a comprehensive tax package on a narrow 51-49 vote early Saturday morning, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took a victory lap of sorts in his home state. McConnell spoke to reporters ahead of a scheduled appearance at the Kentucky Farm Bureau’s annual conference at the Galt House and said he expects to get the legislation to President Donald Trump’s desk in a matter of weeks. The Senate and House must agree on a final version of the bill... Read more 

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