The president of the Kentucky Board of Education says new academic standards for science education in public schools include material on evolution that has been in place since 2006.
David Karem says Kentucky worked with 26 other states on the scientific standards, which were approved Wednesday by the state Board of Education on a 9-0 vote.
Karem told WKU Public Radio Thursday that the evolution teachings will more closely align Kentucky's curriculum with entry-level college requirements. And he says it's in no way an effort to step on anybody's religious beliefs.
"I think the point is that there is no intent in the scientific standards that are being adopted that go into a person's religious beliefs or interfere with them in any way," said Karem.
The President of Kentuckians for Science Education, Robert Bevins, said climate change and evolution may be politically controversial for some people, but they aren't scientifically controversial.
Furlough notices began going out this week to Defense Department workers in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana. The furloughs are part of the across-the-board cuts required under a budget bill that took effect March 1.
For 11 days between July and September, it will not be business as usual at Army installations, although the most impacted will be those who work for the military in support roles. From custodians to school teachers, about four-thousand employees at Fort Campbell will work fewer days.
Funding for uniformed personnell and combat operations is exempt from the cuts. However, Fort Campbell Public Affairs Director Bob Jenkins says training will be impacted.
"Let's say we have one unit and they're only going to deploy a portion of that unit, the portion that's deploying will receive their training first," explains Jenkins.
Kentucky lawmakers could soon take up the issue of taxing electric and compressed natural gas vehicles, in an effort to bolster a flagging road and bridge maintenance fund.
Kentucky House Transportation Committee Chairman Hubert Collins says alternatives are already being discussed in other states and at the federal level. Collins says with gas tax revenue in decline, Kentucky has to do something to make sure there’s adequate funding for transportation infrastructure.
“I think we see that U.P.S. bought something like 1,700 new vehicles which will be the compressed natural gas variety, and that will again take a toll (on Kentucky’s gas tax receipts)," said Rep. Collins.
Despite the concerns from lawmakers, Kentucky’s gasoline tax will rise 2.4 cents next month to a little over 32 cents a gallon—something that could generate $900 million in new revenue over the next fiscal year. The hike comes as a result of a tax increase state lawmakers wrote into law more than 30 years ago.
All lanes of I-65 southbound in Bullitt County have been reopened following Thursday morning's wreck involving a semi and a car.
Update at 10:28 a.m.:
I-65 southbound was closed around 8 a.m. at Mile Point 105 in southern Bullitt County due to a crash involving a semi and a car. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says that the middle and right (outside) lanes are currently open, allowing traffic to funnel through at a slow pace.
The left (inside) lane remains closed. Earlier rains have subsided allowing cleanup to progress at a quicker pace.
A Kentucky State Police spokesman confirms investigators have received at least 10 tips since their appeal to the public Tuesday regarding the murder of a Bardstown police officer.
Jason Ellis was shot to death May 25 after getting out of his crusier to pick up tree limbs along a Bluegrass Parkway exit in Nelson County. KSP this week asked anybody in the region who had trees trimmed or removed to contact law enforcement.
KSP spokesman Norman Chaffins says the limbs found at the murder scene were not from trees near the exit ramp.
Ellis was shot to death with a shotgun after he got out of car at 3 a.m. on the morning he was killed. According to the Courier-Journal, investigators believer the shooter placed tree limbs on the exit ramp, then waited on a hill above the ramp.
Chaffins says the cruiser Ellis was driving did not have a camera, and police know of no witnesses to the incident.
Anyone with information about Ellis' murder is asked to call the KSP at 270-766-5078.