News in Brief

Mayor asking residents to join rally welcoming refugees

LOUISVILLE (AP) — Louisville’s mayor is asking residents to join a community rally to show the city’s solidarity with victims of recent terrorist attacks while welcoming immigrants fleeing those same extremist groups.

The Courier-Journal reports Mayor Greg Fischer is lending his voice to the event in the wake of Congress’ bipartisan vote last week to halt the resettlement of refugees from Syria and Iraq to the U.S. The rally is scheduled for Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Jefferson Square Park

In a statement, Fischer said that “on the week of Thanksgiving, we must celebrate and give thanks that we are a nation of immigrants.”

According to Fischer’s office, the rally is being organized by the city’s Compassionate Louisville campaign along with Pakistani Americans for Compassion and Education and local Islamic centers.


Transportation officials remind travelers to buckle up

FRANKFORT (AP) — The Kentucky Office of Highway Safety wants motorists to remember to fasten their seat belts before taking off on Thanksgiving adventures.

The Transportation Cabinet says in a news release it’s the busiest travel time of the year, and that means a greater likelihood of crashes.

Transportation Secretary Mike Hancock says the best way to survive a highway crash is by wearing a seat belt. Hancock says data indicate that most pickup truck occupants don’t wear seat belts, so the agency is putting added emphasis on the message, asking travelers to “Buckle Up in Your Truck.”

The Transportation Cabinet says the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that seat belt usage in pickup trucks is lower than in any other type of passenger vehicle on the road, and Kentucky follows the trend.


Police: Child dies, mother, sister seriously injured in fire

FRANKFORT (AP) — Police say an early morning fire at a Frankfort apartment building killed a 2-year-old boy and seriously injured his mother and newborn sister.

The State Journal of Frankfort reports the blaze at Country Hills Apartments happened around 1:45 a.m. Friday. In a statement, Franklin County Coroner Will Harrod identified the boy as Demetrius Johnson.

On Friday, Frankfort Police Maj. Rob Warfel said that the state fire marshal’s office is assisting in the investigation to determine the cause of the blaze. Warfel said there was no reason to consider it suspicious at the time.

Eight units at Country Hills were affected by the blaze.

Lead case worker for the local Red Cross Kim Black says her agency assisted over 20 residents displaced by the fire.


18-year-old found dead in driver’s seat of SUV in Lexington

LEXINGTON (AP) — Lexington Police are investigating the death of an 18-year-old man.

Fayette County Coroner Gary Ginn tells local media that on Sunday night, a man was found dead in the driver’s seat of an SUV in northeast Lexington.

An autopsy was performed on Monday. Ginn said in a statement that Jamaal Tre Gossett died from a gunshot wound and said his manner of death was homicide.

Detectives from the Lexington Police Department’s robbery and homicide unit were at the scene Sunday night.


TVA surpasses 3-year cost reduction goal by more than $100M

BOWLING GREEN (AP) — The Tennessee Valley Authority says it surpassed its $500 million goal for reducing operation and maintenance costs over a three-year period. Officials say the utility beat the goal by more than $100 million.

CEO Bill Johnson told board members Friday in Bowling Green that ratepayers also benefited from lower fuel and purchased power costs in fiscal year 2015. The result was an 8 percent decrease in operating expenses for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30. That meant a $760 million savings.

Also that year, TVA helped attract and retain more than 76,200 jobs and a capital investment of more than $7.8 billion.

The Tennessee Valley Authority is the nation’s largest public utility. It supplies power to about 9 million people in Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.


Trial to begin soon for judges in zone change investigation

PADUCAH (AP) — Former McCracken County Judge-Executive Van Newberry and former Deputy Judge-Executive Doug Harnice will soon stand trial after being accused of tampering with public records.

The Paducah Sun reports Newberry and Harnice will go to trial Dec. 14. They’re charged with one count each of tampering with public records.

Both were indicted by a grand jury in January 2014 following an investigation. The two were accused of altering the county’s zoning maps without following proper procedures. Paducah attorney Burton Washburn said he discovered the changes in 2013 and concluded hundreds of parcels had been illegally rezoned from 2007 to 2008.

The trial was originally set for January, but was postponed when prosecutor G.L. Ovey retired.

Attorney Will Kautz, who’s representing both Newberry and Harnice, says his clients are innocent.

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