Lisa Autry

Reporter/Producer

Lisa is a Scottsville native and WKU alum.  She has worked in radio as a news reporter and anchor for 18 years.  Prior to joining WKU Public Radio, she most recently worked at WHAS in Louisville and WLAC in Nashville.  She has received numerous awards from the Associated Press, including Best Reporter in Kentucky.  Many of her stories have been heard on NPR. 

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Lisa Autry

The new head of the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education says he expects colleges and universities to re-evaluate their course offerings just as Western Kentucky University has recently done. 

WKU is preparing to eliminate 101 academic programs while transforming and expanding others. 

In an interview on Thursday with WKU Public Radio, CPE President Aaron Thompson said schools are eliminating both people and programs to contend with a decrease in state funding, declining enrollment, and increasing pension obligations.

Lisa Autry

Kentucky’s chief justice of the Supreme Court says he expects bail reform to come up again in the state legislature. 

John Minton Jr. says the current method of setting bail disproportionately affects low-income defendants who aren’t able to pay for release after being charged with low-level, non-violent offenses. 

Minton addressed members of the Bowling Green Noon Rotary Club on Wednesday.

Despite legislation failing to pass the General Assembly this year, he said going to a cashless bail system has bi-partisan support.

John Thomas

A Catholic priest in Kentucky says this week’s fire of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris will likely bring people of all faiths together. 

The Catholic icon has been a house of worship and tourist destination for more than 850 years. 

In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Father John Thomas, pastor of Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Bowling Green, said the timing of the blaze is significant.

Lisa Autry

The Catholic Diocese of Owensboro has released the names of more than a dozen priests who have credible allegations against them for sexual abuse of a minor. 

The list includes the names of priests who have served in the Owensboro diocese, and who have had one or more allegation of sex abuse substantiated. 

In a news conference on Friday afternoon, Bishop William Medley said while every allegation of abuse is reported, it doesn’t mean that the authorities will pursue charges.

"Often, allegations are not received until years and even decades after an incident," Medley noted. "In some cases, the accused priests have been deceased before an allegation has been made."

WKU

The faculty regent at Western Kentucky University says he expects a proposal to suspend some academic programs will pass an initial vote on Friday. 

A committee made up of faculty members has recommended the school eliminate 101 programs, although many have no students currently enrolled. 

In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Dr. Claus Ernst said faculty he’s spoken to are largely in support of the recommendations.

“I think there’s a feeling that it could have been worse, but I wouldn’t go so far as to say faculty is happy. We’re all anxious about what the future will bring. Some programs will be cut even though they have some students in them, may not be a lot of students, but for any faculty member whose program is cut, that’s devastating.”

WKU

Western Kentucky University is making another leadership change in the Potter College of Arts and Letters. 

In an email on Wednesday afternoon to faculty and staff, Acting Provost Cheryl Stevens announced that Dr. Larry Snyder will resume serving as dean effective April 15.  He will finish his term which ends June 30, 2021.

Dr. Merrall Price, who was serving as interim dean, will remain as Special Assistant to the Provost until she begins her role as Associate Dean in Potter College effective July 1. 

Kentucky Labor Cabinet

Barren County is partnering with a local industry to train jail inmates for life outside the fence.

Johnson Controls is establishing a training program for inmates to become certified HVAC technicians. The company and inmates will work to reduce energy costs in county-owned facilities.

Kentucky Labor Secretary and former Barren County Judge-Executive David Dickerson says the results will be two-fold.

Daviess County Sheriff's Department

Police in Owensboro are investigating a burglary that occurred at a local school. 

Apollo High School canceled classes on Thursday to allow a thorough search of the building and to investigate the scene. 

According to the Daviess County Sheriff’s Office, the vice principal went to open the school just after 6:00 a.m. when he saw someone run from the building dressed in all black and wearing a mask.  As of late Thursday afternoon, law enforcement was still searching for the suspect.

Lisa Autry

Economic development opportunities are opening up for Warren, Butler, Ohio, and Daviess counties along the new Interstate 165, formerly known as the William H. Natcher Parkway. 

Governow Matt Bevin joined local elected leaders and business representatives in Bowling Green on Tuesday to celebrate the designation.

The project, announced in 2016, will upgrade the 70-mile corridor between Bowling Green and Owensboro to an interstate spur. 

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and Federal Highway Administration agreed last fall to officially designate the Natcher Parkway as I-165. 

If Kentucky implements new Medicaid rules this summer, hospitals could see their revenue drop by 20 percent.  That’s according to an analysis of hospital finances in states that have approved or pending Medicaid waiver applications. 

According to estimates, about 95,000 Kentuckians over five years could lose health coverage if the state implements Medicaid rules that would require most recipients to work, attend school, or volunteer as a condition of receiving benefits. 

Franklin Favorite

An automotive supplier is leaving Simpson County and eliminating more than 100 jobs. Harman is closing its manufacturing plant that produces amplifiers, speakers and radios for vehicles.

"HARMAN is encountering intense competition and is adapting to the changing dynamics in the automotive industry," the company said in a statement. "While extremely difficult, these actions are necessary and an essential step to ensure the long-term competitiveness of our business."

Lisa Autry

A judge has upheld a more than half-a-million dollar award in the civil case between U.S. Senator Rand Paul and the neighbor convicted of assaulting him over a yard dispute. 

A ruling issued on Thursday afternoon denies Rene Boucher a new trial.

A jury on Jan. 30 awarded Senator Paul more than $582,000 in damages stemming from the 2017 attack outside his Bowling Green home.  Boucher’s attorney Matt Baker appealed the judgment, claiming the award was excessive. 

Lisa Autry

Doctors aren’t the only ones on call at Hardin Memorial Hospital in Elizabethtown.  So is man’s best friend.

A part Labrador Retriever named Baron; Pepper the Yorkie; Lola, a Rhodesian Ridgeback; and Lady, a German Short-Haired Pointer, reported for duty at the hospital on a recent Friday afternoon, and fanned out to patient rooms to offer some canine comfort. 


Flickr/Creative Commons/Jeremy W. Osborne

Kentuckians are being urged to take 20 minutes in 2020 to fill out their census questionnaire which will directly impact the commonwealth. 

One year from now, the U.S. Census Bureau will start mailing questionnaires to every household in the nation. 

The U.S. Constitution mandates that a census of the population be conducted every ten years to determine the number of congressional delegates for each state. 

Census data is also used to determine how federal money is distributed to states and local communities for things like roads, schools, and health care.

The war in Afghanistan reaches a watershed moment this year when American service members will deploy to fight a war that began before they were born.  Now, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is pressing Congress to approve a bi-partisan bill ending the nation’s longest war. 

With Osama bin Laden dead and Al-Qaeda nearly eliminated, Paul says it’s time to declare victory and leave Afghanistan.

The Bowling Green Republican is co-sponsoring legislation with Democratic Senator Tom Udall of New Mexico that would bring all American service members home from Afghanistan.

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