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  1. 7-Year-Old Crash Survivor to Live with Half-Sister
    An Illinois judge has ruled that a 7-year-old girl who survived a plane crash that killed four family members is now under the legal care of her half-sister.

    The Belleville News-Democrat reports that a Washington County judge granted guardianship of Sailor Gutzler to her half-sister Kasie Dlubala and her husband Daniel of Nashville.

    Court guardian Julie Kozuszek wrote in a report that Sailor was doing well in school and involved in extracurricular activities while living with the Dlubalas. The guardian wrote that Sailor expressed desire to live with the family. The ruling was made Jan. 30.

    Sailor's parents, 9-year-old sister and 14-year-old cousin were killed in the Jan. 2 crash in Kentucky as they returned from a Florida vacation. The cause of the crash is under investigation.
  2. Police: Wingo Man Set Fires over Photo Dispute
    Police arrested a Wingo man Saturday on arson and criminal mischief charges, after responding to multiple fires they say he intentionally set.

    Deputies with the Marshall County Sheriff's Office were dispatched early Saturday Morning to a report of a vehicle that was stuck in a large creek bed fully engulfed in flames just south of 1st street in Hardin. Officers met with members of the Hardin-South Marshall Fire Department at the scene. Police said they suspected that the vehicle had purposely been set on fire. While Responders were on scene battling the vehicle blaze, another call came in about a structure fire at 163 Commerce Street in Hardin.

    Police said one of the victims inside the home also owned the vehicle that was set on fire. Deputies said they later determined that both fires were set by the victim's alleged boyfriend, 22-year-old Corey Glentz, of Wingo. Glentz was still at the scene of the house fire when deputies arrived. Glentz reportedly told deputies he had been in a dispute with the victim over a picture, and said he had set fire to the vehicle in the creek and returned to set the house on fire. The woman and two children were in the house at the time the blaze started. Everyone was able to get out safely.

    Glentz is charged with 1st degree arson and 1st degree criminal mischief. 
  3. Waters: School-Choice Obstructionism
    Hopeful rhetoric adorns wall of school-choice obstructionism

    By Jim Waters


    House Education Committee Chairman Derrick Graham’s recent op-ed reveals his clear understanding of Kentucky’s education deficiencies. 

    Graham, D-Frankfort, is well aware of the “persistent disparities in performance between groups of students, especially those defined as minorities, disabled or low-income.”

    He eloquently addresses how “students caught in the achievement gap are disproportionately from African-American, Latino and low-income homes,” and how “these discrepancies stunt not only the educational attainment of these students, but their future economic opportunities as well.”

    Graham recognizes that “clearly, far too many schools are falling short.” 
    Why, then, does he employ more stall tactics than a star defense lawyer when it comes to allowing Kentucky parents to have viable alternatives, including public charter schools, for educating their children – especially when a growing body of evidence indicates that such parental-controlled choices help address those very issues he stews about?

    While the state Senate recently passed solid legislation to bring public charter schools to Kentucky, Graham – as he often does – used his substantial power as committee chairman to kill the thoughtful, effective and restrained approach. 
    The Senate-approved policy creates a pilot program allowing five charter schools in Kentucky’s two largest and most-urban school districts – similar to densely populated, low-income communities nationwide where charters more often than not have an impressive track record of high test scores, graduation rates and college attendance and low failure and dropout numbers.  
    Graham offered legislation purporting to close the achievement gap and turn around failing schools. 

    While these bills may reinforce Graham’s any-option-but-charter-schools stance with the state teachers’ union – where he no doubt would like to land a cushy job after his legislative tenure – they offer little in the way of actual education improvement for Kentucky’s neediest students. 

    Accomplishing that requires policies – including parental school-choice options – that would put him at odds with the union bosses.  

    Graham’s turnaround bill would have allowed for an “external management organization” to come in and advise a failing school’s existing leadership – but only after that school failed four years in a row. 

    So if Johnny enters a school that fails during his first-grade year, he’s finished the fourth grade before this dull accountability tool can even be picked up. And if, by chance, the school happens to barely pass during Johnny’s fourth-grade year – even after three consecutive years of failure – then it gets to start over with a new “shot clock.”

    Two other significant developments regarding charter schools occurred on the day Graham’s op-ed was published by the Lexington Herald-Leader: 
    Alabama became the 43rd state to pass charter-school legislation, leaving Kentucky among the seven states in the nation without a parental school-choice policy. 

    Stanford University’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO) released the results of one of its most comprehensive research projects ever, comparing charters with traditional schools in urban areas in 22 different states. 
    “This research shows that many urban charter schools are providing superior academic learning for their students,” CREDO director Margaret Raymond said. 

    Do parents not deserve such options, especially considering the fact that the math proficiency-rate gap among Kentucky’s middle-school students has more than doubled since the Kentucky Education Reform Act was implemented – from 9 points in 1990 to 22 points in 2013? 

    Among Graham’s flowery rhetoric was his acknowledgement that Kentucky legislators have “a moral obligation and legal responsibility” to ensure such gaps are closed. 

    So if politicians like Graham and the handful of his party’s fellow charter-school obstructionists in the House fail to close the gaps by blocking school-choice policies that have proven effective elsewhere, does that make such obstruction immoral and even illegal? 

    Jim Waters is president of the Bluegrass Institute, Kentucky’s free-market think tank. Reach him at jwaters@freedomkentucky.com. Read previously published columns at www.bipps.org. 
  4. State Says Tax Breaks for Ark Encounter Illegal
    Lawyers for the state of Kentucky are asking a judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the Christian ministry that wants to be considered for a sales tax rebate program.

    The state's response filed Friday in federal court in Frankfort maintains providing tourism incentives to Ark Encounter would violate the state and federal constitutions.

    Ark Encounter is a theme park planned in northern Kentucky around a 500-foot-long wooden ark modeled after the Bible's story of Noah. State officials told Answers in Genesis in December that the project's mission has changed from tourist attraction to ministry and denied the application.

    Answers in Genesis has argued that its application for about $18 million in sales tax rebates should be treated the same as a non-religious applicant.
  5. River Levels Still Dropping Despite Mid-Week Rain
    Before the mid-week rain, rivers were forecast to drop below flood stage by now, but the good news is they are still dropping.

    At Smithland, the river is already more than a foot below flood stage and still dropping.

    At Paducah, the Ohio River was at 39.6 feet Saturday morning, and is expected to fall below the 39-foot flood stage mark by Saturday evening.

    At Brookport, floodwaters were at 41.8 feet Saturday morning, but should drop below flood stage (37 feet) by Monday evening.

    At Grand Chain, IL, the river was at 47.5 feet and will fall another 5 feet to below flood stage by Monday evening.

    In Cairo, the river was at 45.3 feet early Saturday, about 5 feet above flood stage. Water should drop below that level by late Tuesday night.
  6. River Levels Still Dropping Despite Mid-Week Rain
    Before the mid-week rain, rivers were forecast to drop below flood stage by now, but the good news is they are still dropping.

    At Smithland, the river is already more than a foot below flood stage and still dropping.

    At Paducah, the Ohio River was at 39.6 feet Saturday morning, and is expected to fall below the 39-foot flood stage mark by Saturday evening.

    At Brookport, floodwaters were at 41.8 feet Saturday morning, but should drop below flood stage (37 feet) by Monday evening.

    At Grand Chain, IL, the river was at 47.5 feet and will fall another 5 feet to below flood stage by Monday evening.

    In Cairo, the river was at 45.3 feet early Saturday, about 5 feet above flood stage. Water should drop below that level by late Tuesday night.
  7. Boiler Fire Leaves Part of UK Campus Without Heat
    Lexington authorities say a boiler plant fire left the north campus at the University of Kentucky without heat.

    Lexington Fire Department Battalion Chief Jeff Nantz says firefighters were called to UK's boiler plant Friday night after a boiler caught fire.

    The Lexington Herald-Leader reports the exact cause of the fire wasn't immediately known.

    Nantz says the fire was difficult to extinguish because of the amount of smoke.

    He says firefighters also had to make sure the boiler didn't overheat and explode. He says UK will be assessing the damages.
  8. Riverport Test Loads Shipping Containers on Barge
    On Friday, the Paducah McCracken County Riverport Authority successfully loaded intermodal shipping containers onto Ingram barges, as they began a trial run to explore the feasibility of moving the large containers on inland waterways by barge.

    The initial testing took place at the Port of Paducah by loading fifty-four 20-foot ISO shipping containers from dock to barge utilizing the port’s new tower crane. An Ingram towboat will transport the barge with the containers to the port of St. Louis and then back to Paducah for unloading.

    Last year the Riverport Authority installed the largest flat-top tower crane in North America, with a lift capacity of 53 tons up to 100 feet from the tower, and a boom that stretches 250 feet. Prior to the new crane, a 40-year-old crane with a 20-ton capacity was used.

    The older crane was capable of loading or unloading one barge at a time, but the new Linden Comansa crane can load or unload two barges at a time, at a faster rate and with a greater load capacity. Currently, the Paducah Riverport Authority moves about 875,000 tons of cargo a year, equating to the loading and unloading of about 400 barges.

    The Riverport’s decision to install the new multimillion dollar crane was inspired by an increase in shipments on inland waterways in recent years, and the highly anticipated expansion of the Panama Canal, which is sure to create bigger shipments, more cargo, and a demand for faster turnarounds.

    The Riverport also has applied for Foreign Trade Zone designation, which could yield economic opportunities for the entire Paducah area.

    “We are excited about assisting Ingram Barge Company in this test move,” said Ken Canter, Executive Director, Paducah-McCracken County Riverport Authority. “Our companies have a long history of working together.”

    Greenfield Products of Union City, Tennessee, has partnered with the Port and Ingram Barge by providing a 20-foot-long container handling “spreader” which locks into the container on land, and then automatically unlocks the container when it is placed on a barge. The spreader not only provides an efficient means to handle the containers, it also eliminates the need for people in danger areas where containers and lifted and lowered.

  9. Water Still Keeping Some Roads Closed
    The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is reporting water still over the roads in several locations, including:


    Crittenden County

    The Cave-In-Rock ferry re-opened Saturday, and all roads are reportedly open.



    Fulton County

    KY 1129/Adams Rd CLOSED between KY 94 and KY 239

    KY1354 is CLOSED at the Dorena-Hickman ferry landing

    The Dorena-Hickman Ferry remains closed by high water on the Mississippi River 



    Livingston County

    KY 133 CLOSED at KY 137 intersection at Berry's Ferry

    KY 137/River Road CLOSED @ KY 133 intersection at Berry's Ferry

    KY 137/River Road is CLOSED from the KY 763 intersection to the 15mm

    KY 137 Water Over Road at 3.7mm- Signs Posted

    KY 1436 is CLOSED at the KY 137 Intersection


    Lyon County

    KY 819/Sunnyside Loop closed between the 2.2-2.6 mile point.



    McCracken County

    KY 1255/Bonds Rd at near KY 450/Oaks Rd intersection

    State officials remind drivers not to risk driving through flood-covered roads.

  10. Dogwood Art-Photography Contest Accepts Entries

    2015 Dogwood Art & Photography Contest

    Celebrating Paducah’s 51st Dogwood Trail

    Winners Exhibited as part of Mayor’s Art Club
    Paducah City Hall April – June 2015
     

    Sponsored by Paducah Civic Beautification Board

    Coordinated & Judged by Paducah School of Art & Design

    Conditions Governing Artwork:

    Paducah School of Art & Design (PSAD) has received the artwork listed on the following page(s) from the artist on a loaned basis for the purpose of judging for the Dogwood Art & Photography Contest. The 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners in both categories will be on exhibit in Mayor Kaler’s office at Paducah’s City Hall April 8 th – June 29 th.

    ·                     Artwork (2-D, all mediums accepted) and Photographs (any size) must be framed and ready to hang with a wire or other hanging device already in place. Sawtooth hangers are strictly prohibited.

    ·                     No entry fee.

    ·                     All entries will be photographed and displayed on the Dogwood Trail Facebook page. Photographers may provide digital files (file size no larger than 3 mega pixels).

    ·                     The artist agrees to allow Dogwood Art & Photography Contest to photograph the loaned artwork for the purposes of documentation, research, publication, education, and/or publicity unless specifically prohibited from doing so by the artist in writing.

    ·                     Artists may submit as many as two entries per category: Art and Photography.

    ·                     Fill in an entry form for each submission. Attach to the back of each entry.

    ·                     Requests for purchase shall be directed to the artist. 

    ·                     The City of Paducah requires a waiver (on last page) be signed to hold them harmless for art exhibited in the Mayor’s office at City Hall. This will be requested when winners are announced.

    ·                     Please sign and return this loan agreement with entry(s) between 10 am and 5 pm Monday thru Thursday, March 30 th thru April 2 nd. It will be signed by a PSAD representative, and a copy will be returned to you at that time.

    ·                     Judging will be coordinated by Paducah School of Art & Design on Monday, April 6.

    ·                     1st place winners in both the Art and Photography categories will receive $100, 2nd place-$50 and 3rd place-$25.

    ·                     The winners’ work may not be withdrawn before the closing date of the exhibit for any reason without written consent of the artist and Dogwood Art & Photography Contest.

    ·                     Depending on the number of entries, additional locations may host the Dogwood Art during the month of April. This will be determined following judging on April 6th. Info concerning winners and possible display options will be available for all to see on the Dogwood Trail Facebook page (after April 6 th).

                            I agree to the above guidelines governing the 2015 Paducah Dogwood Art and Photography Contest.

                                ________________________________ (artist's signature)

                                ___________  (date)                                                                                                                                              

     

    Return Signed Agreement to:           Deliver Artwork to:

    Paducah School of Art & Design          Paducah Dogwood Art & Photography Contest  

    Attn: Paul Aho                                       Paducah School of Art & Design

    409 Broadway                                       409 Broadway

    Paducah, KY  42001                              Paducah, KY  42001

    paul.aho@kctcs.edu                                        

    270-408-4281

     

    * Entries accepted Monday – Thursday, March 30 th – April 2 nd, 2015 10 am – 5 pm.

    * Judging will be on April 6 th.

    * 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners will be notified on April 6 and work will be exhibited in the Mayor’s office at City Hall - starting April 8. At this time the City will require a waiver be signed by each artist to hold the City harmless while his/her art is on exhibit.

    * Awards will be presented at a City Commission meeting in April (to be determined when dogwoods bloom).

     

     

    Entry Form 

    Artist Information

    Name: __________________________________________________

    Address: ________________________________________________

    City ______________________ State __________ Zip ___________

    Phone: ________________________ Email: ____________________

    Categories: Artwork & Photography (Maximum of two entries per category)

    Category Title: _______________________________________________________

    Medium: ____________________________________________________________

    Year: __________________________  Dimensions: _________________________

    Retail Price: _____________________ Insurance Value if NFS: ________________

     

    City of Paducah

    Mayor’s Art Club

    Release and Waiver of Liability

     

    Printed Name: _________________________________

    I hereby forever release, indemnify, and hold harmless the City of Paducah, its directors, officers, employees and assigns from and against all liability, claims, damages, demands, losses, actions, causes of action, suits, and proceedings whatsoever, known or unknown, whether at law or in equity, now or in the future, arising in strict liability, breach of warranty, breach of contract, negligence, or gross negligence, or under any other theory of recovery, for or by reason of any matter, cause or thing, including but not limited to any and all claims for any loss, loss of property, or property damage or personal injury of any kind, nature, or description, including disability or death, that may arise out of or relate to my involvement in the Mayor’s Art Club.

     

    I agree to conform to the rules and procedures to the best of my ability. I understand that my participation is voluntary and is to be completed without remuneration or monetary benefit of any kind, including any expenses I may have. I also understand that volunteers are responsible for their own insurance (medical, automobile, liability, or any other) and are not covered through City insurance. In no event, shall any act taken or omission made by the Released Parties in any way limit the scope of this release without written agreement of the parties.

     

    I also give my permission to use any photographs taken of me or my work for marketing or other purposes.

     

    I have read and fully understand this release and waiver, understand that I have given up substantial rights by signing it, acknowledge that this release is being relied on by the parties listed above in accepting me as a volunteer/exhibitor/participant and is material to their decision to do so, and sign it freely and voluntarily without any coercion.

     

    Signature of Volunteer/Exhibitor/Participant: ____________________________________________________

     

    Signature of Parent if under 18 years of age: _____________________________________________________

     

    Witness Signature: __________________________________ Date: ______________

     

    Phone Number: _________________________________

     

    Contact (e-mail): ________________________________

     

    Describe each piece of art being released for display in the Mayor’s Art Club as described above. Please include number of pieces, medium, art dimensions, etc.

































































     

     

     

     

  11. KY Arts Council Seeks Students' Derby Creations
    The Kentucky Arts Council invites Kentucky schools to be part of the fun and excitement of the Kentucky Derby by decorating canvases for the Governor’s Derby Celebration.



    Picnic tables on the Old State Capitol grounds will be fitted with horse heads and tails, and the canvases, or “Derby blankets,” will be placed over the tabletops like a blanket over a horse.



    The arts council will provide a canvas to all schools that request one. Schools must provide their own supplies to complete the paintings, and paint must be outdoor latex and able to withstand inclement weather.



    Last year, 54 schools participated in the Derby Celebration event, including Bremen Elementary School in Muhlenberg County.



    “We like this project because it fits in with what we always tell our kids about putting their best foot forward; we compare that to the Kentucky Derby,” said Bremen Elementary School teacher Pam Rose. “You can gallop around wild and not achieve your goals, but with a horse and jockey working together you can win the race and reach your goals. This project is a fun reminder of that concept.”



    There are no theme requirements, but painted canvases must be returned to the arts council by April 24 for consideration to be part of the Governor’s Derby Celebration. The arts council reserves the right to select which canvases to display at the event. Schools that participate are acknowledged at the celebration.



    To request a canvas for your school, contact Jean St. John, arts council education director, at jean.stjohn@ky.gov or call 888-833-2787, ext. 486.



    The
    Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, fosters environments for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.
  12. Church Hopes 'AD' Series Stirs Online Discussion
    The Bible is a hot topic these days. Noah (Noah 2014), Moses (Exodus: Gods and Kings, 2014) and Christ himself (The Passion of the Christ, 2004) have leaped from the sacred text onto the giant screen. Hoping to ride high on this popular Bible-wave is NBC, which is pushing its latest Biblical series "AD, The Bible Continues". This twelve-week drama highlights the conflict and growth of the New Testament Church in the hostile Roman world.

    One local church sees this as a moment for discussion and awareness.

    “Some of the most powerful and genuine features of the early church are ignored and forgotten. I am hoping this series help will change that,” says Pastor Rusty of Community Fellowship in Graves County. 

    His congregation has set up a website (thebiblecontinues.com) encouraging people to engage in the larger discussion about the history and success of the Gospel movement in the first century. The church is inviting people from all walks of life to watch the series with an open mind and then join in on the discussion online. 

    Each week Pastor Rusty will present one or two key discussion questions online, based upon the series. The public can add insights, ask further questions and even engage in friendly debate. The forum will be monitored he says and “any hate speech or malicious comments will be swiftly removed.”  But he also adds, “all viewpoints are welcome and anyone can share his or her perspective.” 

    This local pastor is challenging people from all walks of life to consider the veracity of the early Church’s claim. “If you disregard the truthfulness of the resurrection then you must develop an alternative theory of the movement’s early success.” 

    The AD series starts on Easter Sunday night, April 5th on NBC. For more information you can log onto the church’s website at cfbc.tv or onto the discussion page thebiblecontinues.com .
  13. Luke Williams: Raisin' Up America
    “The only thing new in the world is the history you don't know.”
                                                                                   - Harry S Truman 
       

    There's been a lot of talk lately about what it means to love America and how we teach this nation's history to our children. A very vocal and growing movement in this country (I'm looking at you Texas and Oklahoma) wants our history text books to only teach "the good parts" of our past. That's not history. That's indoctrination. It's not real love, either. Only loving America for her exceptionalism is like being a man who only loves his wife as long as she's thin and under 30. It's shallow. Teaching the history of this country without confronting and discussing our mistakes is like watching the movie "Rocky" without the training scenes. It's like watching "The Karate Kid" if the whole movie was nothing but the tournament. 

       "What's so special about that LaRusso kid?" "I don't know, he just IS!"
     
    Nobody wants to read a story about somebody who wins every single time. Why do you think so many people hate the New York Yankees? Learning about our failures as a nation only makes our victories sweeter. I was lucky enough to have a teacher in middle school who made history real and didn't shy away from the darker passages of our growth as a nation. It didn't make me love my country any less, either. It was inspiring to think of our founding fathers as men who put their pantaloons on one leg at a time like the rest of us. They weren't extraordinarily super-human. They were real humans who did extraordinary things. They also made mistakes just like the rest of us and did a lot of things that were just down right wrong. You know how many women, African-Americans, and Native Americans voted for George Washington? None. Because they didn't have the right.

    We are blessed as a nation to have the words and thoughts of our founders preserved and available to be read and studied. From letters written by soldiers in the Revolutionary War to battlefield diaries kept during the Civil War, our history is still alive and it's all there for anyone who cares to read it for themselves and not just take political pundits' word for it. There are those that will disagree with me. They're the ones who think that their view of America and her history is the only one with any legitimacy. They bristle and get indignant when anyone dares to bring up something that doesn't paint America as a picture of perfection. I say, let our kids learn everything they can about our history and make up their own minds. Hey, they might even grow up to have some pretty good ideas. That tends to happen when you don't force feed 'em, and instead teach 'em to think for themselves.

    In the grand scheme of things, America is still a very young country. Imagine that it's a child and we're all it's parents. Do we want to raise a child that is called out when it does something wrong. A child that learns from it's mistakes and grows into a mature, intelligent adult that is strong when it has to be, yet is still capable of empathy and compassion? Or do we keep telling the kid it's perfect and special and never does anything wrong and spend the rest of our lives apologizing for raising up a spoiled brat and a bully? 

    Luke Williams was born and raised in western Kentucky. He decided to pursue a career in radio after his mamma told him that out of all her kids, he was the one that could "talk real good." In addition to radio, Luke has also worked in a boot store and a hardware store, so he can offer knowledgeable advice on insoles and hammers. You can hear Luke every afternoon on 93.3FM, WKYQ.
  14. KY Republican Candidates to Speak at April Event
    The Republican party of McCracken County invites everyone to the Lincoln – Reagan Day dinner on Friday, April 17 at the Carson Center.

    Those who attend can meet and hear from candidates for statewide offices who are participating in the May primary election. 

    Scheduled speakers include gubernatorial candidates James Comer, Hal Heiner, Matt Bevin, and Will T Scott; lieutenant governor candidates Christian McDaniel, K.C. Crosbie, Rodney Coffey, and Jenean Hampton; and attorney general candidates Whitney Westerfield and Mike Hogan.

    Also scheduled is secretary of state hopeful Stephen L. Knipper; state treasurer candidates Allison Ball and Kenny Imes; agriculture commissioner candidates Ryan Quarles and Richard Heath; and state auditor candidate Mike Harmon.

    The event will begin at 6:30pm in the Carson Center's Myre River Room. Tickets are $30. For more information call 270–534–8344 or email Rgrana1@me.com .

  15. Cave-In-Rock Ferry Back in Service
    Floodwaters on the Ohio River have dropped sufficiently to allow the Cave-In-Rock Ferry to resume operation starting at 6:00 am Saturday.

    Rising floodwaters forced the ferry to halt operation at 6:00 pm March 12th.  Ferry Operator Lonnie Lewis says the ferry crew has taken advantage of the break to perform maintenance and even do so painting on the boat and barge.

    With the Ohio River expected to drop below 40 ft. overnight on the Shawneetown gauge, Lewis said the ferry plans to resume operations on the normal schedule Saturday morning.  

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