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Thursday, August 30, 2012

NEWS ROUND-UP -- THURSDAY 30 AUGUST


THE RIVER CITY NEWS MORE COVINGTON NEWS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE
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by Michael Monks 
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SCHOOL BOARD TO MEET FOR FIRST TIME SINCE ELECTION TROUBLES
The Covington School Board has moved its regularly scheduled meeting to Latonia Elementary Thursday at 7:00PM instead of its usual location at the Board of Education on Seventh Street. The message came from Covington Independent Public Schools Wednesday afternoon:
"Due to unforeseen emergency circumstances and special needs accommodation requests, the August 30, 7:00PM Covington Board of Education meeting has been moved to Latonia Elementary School, located at 3901 Huntington, Covington, Kentucky 41015"
This will be the first meeting of the Covington School Board since the election filing deadline passed and the legal battle over the seat vacated by Denise Varney blew up. The River City News will have this meeting covered for you.
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COVINGTON PHILANTHROPIST WRITES MORE ON STATE OF SCHOOLS
From Oakley Farris:
If I may borrow your attention one more time and direct it to the plight of our school children. I would like to share some observations on the recent good news that Harvard University has had for us concerning the state of education in Kentucky. It seems that Harvard has taken test results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress Test (NAEP) and has concluded that Kentucky has shown some impressive progress on the test since 1992. In fact Harvard concluded that Kentucky exceeded the national overall score in reading proficiency. Now I am only interested in what is best for the school kids, so I am encouraged by that news, perhaps our situation is not as grim as the recent ACT and IOWA test scores would seem to indicate. Because my concern is first for the students I like to look just a little closer to ensure that the results are genuine and not being distorted to fit an agenda.
My friends, I wish I could tell you that I was confident in the Harvard study’s conclusions. However I am in possession of an analysis of the Harvard study which was conducted by the Bluegrass Institute. The Bluegrass Institute study brings to light serious flaws in the Harvard study. Now I am not one to get in the middle of a fight between academics over whose study proves what to whom, that is not my concern. My concern is that the data may have been cherry picked in a way that leaves the most vulnerable students in Kentucky, students just like ours here in Covington, open to being overlooked.
Read more from Mr. Farris: Click Here 
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SCHOOL DISTRICT HOSTS DRUG-TESTING FOCUS GROUP
Covington Schools welcomed parents and other concerned citizens Wednesday evening to Holmes High School where the issue of drug-testing students involved in sports and extracurricular activites was explored. There are just two days left to participated in an online survey:
Friday will be the last day to take a survey on possible random drug testing for students in grades 6-12 who are involved in extra curricular activities. The Covington Board of Education is seeking the input of students, parents and community on whether the district should provide random drug testing for students. Wednesday night, 20 parents and community members participated in focus groups at Holmes High School to voice their opinions on random drug testing. The district is collecting information that will be reported to the Board of Education which will make a final decision on random drug testing.
To take the survey, click here.
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POLICE CHIEF TO ADDRESS CRIME ISSUES IN MAINSTRASSE
Residents of Mainstrasse Village are encouraged to attend a meeting Thursday at 6:00PM inside Zola on Main Street. Covington Police Chief Spike Jones will be on hand to discuss recent crime issues in the neighborhood.
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PEASELBURG RESIDENTS CONCERNS ABOUT HOUSING AUTHORITY PROJECT
A message on Facebook indicates that residents of Covington's Peaselburg neighborhood are concerned about plans by the Housing Authority of Covington, under the guise of its Neighborhood Investment Partners group, to turn potentially eleven properties on Emery Drive into public housing. The meeting is scheduled for 5:00PM at the Housing Authority of Covington office at 2300 Madison Avenue.
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DON'T MISS WEDNESDAY EVENING'S NEWS!
What's up with this sinkhole on Russell Street?; A meeting is set for next week to determine future food truck events in Covington; Plus, a man charged with kidnapping says he can't get along with his Covington-based attorney.
Full story: The RC News: Wednesday Evening Round-Up 
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QUICKIES
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Coverage of Sen. Mitch McConnell's speech at Republican National Convention The Hill 
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Coverage of Sen. Rand Paul's speech at Republican National Convention Wall Street Journal 
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NKY tax preparer admits to falsifying tax returns Herald-Leader 
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Embattled Campbell Boys Lodge loses license to operate Cincinnati Enquirer 
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Former UK basketball player Michael Porter due in court on sex charges WKYT 
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State employees to get free flu shots WKYT 
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KY Arts Council offers workshop for teachers press release 
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KENTUCKIANS SUE DISTILLERIES OVER BLACK GUNK
You read that right. Kentuckians are suing the makers of whiskey:
In 2007, researchers published a scientific study about Baudoinia, a newly identified type of fungus. Naturally occurring, Baudoinia germinates on ethanol, the colorless alcohol that can evaporate during fermentation, making the area around whiskey-aging warehouses a prime breeding ground.
News of this whiskey fungus soon rippled across spirit-producing communities from Cognac to Canada — a mystery solved, and an opportunity found.
In June, home and business owners in and around Louisville, part of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, filed class-action lawsuits in federal and circuit courts against five major distilleries, charging property damage and negligence. In September, with the help of lawyers in Britain, the plaintiffs’ Louisville lawyer, William F. McMurry, plans to bring a similar suit in Scotland, where the fungus is so rampant that it almost seems like part of the architecture.
Full story: The New York Times 
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CITY COMMISSIONER NAMES WINNERS OF HIS $2,000 PRIZES
Covington City Commissioner Steve Frank has revealed the winners of his contest in which he asked citizens to come up with ways to save the City or make the City some money. From the Commissioner:
Here are your winners of the best idea to Save Covington Money and i know 1 if not both are from our Fire Department.Mike Clendenen and Matt Chastain both win $2,000 for their idea of getting more revenue for our EMS runs. Thank you! The city has made some progress in this area, but we will double and triple up our efforts. Recently Mayor Scheper and I have deepened our relations with Mayor Gray in Lexington and Mayor Fisher in Louisville to help form a Bluegrass Triangle to represent urban interests better in Frankfort. Because the overuse of Ambulance EMS services and high amount of Medicaid Ems runs occur in urban environments, I am certain that they are suffering from low reimbursement rates that do not cover costs. We will ask our fellow urban centers to help lobby Frankfort for higher rates. We will also compare third party billing agencies to see if someone is more effective in getting higher pay outs from insured patients than our present methods. The third thing we can do is unilaterally raise rates on those who can pay for services and charge higher for rescues and the like. All in all we received over 50reasonable suggestions. I'll take the next few days and go over all of them and chart what we are doing to implement them or if already worked on, where we are in the process. Thank you all for participating. The whole community of Covington is the real winner in this!
FIREFIGHTERS TO COLLECT CASH THIS WEEKEND FOR MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
From the Covington Fire Department:

This weekend the Covington Firefighters will be stationed throughout the city collecting for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. 100% of the money collected will go to support research and those affected by muscular diseases. Please take a moment and watch this emotional video of Shaun Probert, a Shaker Heights Fireman, Local 516, who was diagnosed with ALS in 2010. He is the new MDA spokesperson, replacing Kelly Crush, an IAFF Firefighter from Wichita Falls, TX Local 432 who died in March from ALS. Help us help our "Brother" who is now "on the other side of the boot" in helping the children who suffer from Muscular Dystrophy.
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MAINSTRASSE LOOKING FOR CHALK ARTISTS
The chalk art contest will be back on Main Street for this year's Oktoberfest which is a little over a week away. Click the image for details on how to enter...

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