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WKU Public Radio is part of a new regional journalism collaborative known as the Ohio Valley ReSource. It's made up of public media stations across Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. The collaborative will focus on the changing economy in the region and its effect on jobs, healthcare and infrastructure. Each station taking part in the Ohio Valley ReSource is hiring a reporter to contribute to the effort. WKU Public Radio's reporter is Alana Watson, who will be based in the Bowling Green newsroom. The Ohio Valley ReSource is made possible by member stations and through a grant from the Corporation For Public Broadcasting.

PHOTOS: Blackjewel Miners Continue Blocking Railroad In Southeastern Kentucky

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Curren Sheldon
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Unpaid miners spent a fourth day Thursday on a Kentucky railroad protesting Blackjewel Mining, as a bankruptcy court prepared to sell off the company’s assets.

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Credit Curren Sheldon
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The miners were left without pay when Blackjewel, the country’s sixth-largest coal company, abruptly declared bankruptcy last month and paychecks bounced. They’re blocking delivery of a load of coal until they get their pay.

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Credit Curren Sheldon
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Miners tried to stay cool as the sun beat down on the tracks. Many, like miner John Smith, say that despite the bankruptcy and industry decline they still hope to return to work soon.

“If they’d have paid us, none of this would have happened,” he said. “We’d just be on unemployment and looking for a job.”

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Credit Curren Sheldon
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A federal bankruptcy court arranged an auction of Blackjewel properties this week, and a court hearing is scheduled for Monday. It’s not yet clear if the buyers will bring Blackjewel’s miners back to work. Miners say they hope to attend that hearing to make their voices heard.

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Credit Curren Sheldon
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