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Columns

  • Library teen program suspended until safety solution can be found

    Recently, there has been quite a bit of social media attention surrounding the library–some good and some bad. Normally, I do not engage in these conversations, but I feel like I need to address the current issues because they are important.

  • Firefighters, police honored for service, dedication, sacrifice

    They may have different uniforms and job duties, but one quality binds all first responders: They immediately run toward an emergency when the first impulse is to run away.

    They deserve recognition every day, but spring and fall are when we officially set aside time to commemorate their invaluable work and sacrifices. This week, for example, recognizes police officers, while May 4 was International Firefighters’ Day and early October is when the country holds National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend.

  • Fewer, bigger farms are feeding more people, but hiring fewer

    To better understand how less really can be more, consider the American farmer.  For much of history, many families grew and raised their own food, but today, one farmer on average feeds 100 people– and does it at a cost much less than you’ll find in other industrialized nations.

    That fact, plus many others, can be found in the latest Census of Agriculture, which the federal government compiles every five years.  The most recent report, which is based on data collected in 2017, was released last month.

  • E-cigarrettes pose a danger to youth as a popular new habit

    A big part of my job as County Attorney is keeping up with what kids and teenagers are getting into today.

    As a juvenile prosecutor and a fellow parent, I feel it is my duty to pass on to my fellow parents and guardians this information. A growing trend we are seeing amongst our teenagers in school is the use of e-cigarettes.

    This should come as no surprise since vaping and the use of e-cigarettes seems to be the cosmopolitan thing of modern times. With the health risks of smoking cigarettes, why not look for an alternative?

  • E-cigarrettes pose a danger to youth as a popular new habit

    A big part of my job as County Attorney is keeping up with what kids and teenagers are getting into today.

    As a juvenile prosecutor and a fellow parent, I feel it is my duty to pass on to my fellow parents and guardians this information. A growing trend we are seeing amongst our teenagers in school is the use of e-cigarettes.

    This should come as no surprise since vaping and the use of e-cigarettes seems to be the cosmopolitan thing of modern times. With the health risks of smoking cigarettes, why not look for an alternative?

  • Business growth has not helped many who lag behind in stats

    In its latest annual look at the commonwealth’s economy, the University of Kentucky’s Center for Business and Economic Research writes that there isn’t one Kentucky but three, with “one thriving, one treading water and one struggling.”

    The statistics bear that out, with some showing we’re doing quite well and others highlighting the persistent challenges that remain.

  • Kentucky has a rich and diverse history

    One of the great things about Kentucky is that we recognized the importance of protecting and promoting our past early on.

    The Kentucky Historical Society, for example, got its start in 1838, and received its first state funding in 1906. Still going strong, it is an integral part of a network featuring several hundred smaller historical organizations and museums that commemorate everything from our military contributions to quilts.

  • Lamaker tackles questions, answers about pension crisis

    In the days since Gov. Matt Bevin vetoed a retirement bill affecting our quasi-governmental agencies and regional public universities, I have had many people ask me a lot of questions. Here are my responses to some of the more popular ones.

    1.) What is this issue about, exactly?

  • Popular bills not given serious thought during last legislative session

    Legislative sessions are mostly remembered for laws that are enacted, but for some people, keeping a bill from the governor’s desk is a victory, too.

    When the General Assembly wrapped up its work late last month, for example, teachers were especially pleased to see that two of the bills they strongly opposed never even came up for a vote in the House, much less the Senate.

  • Last minute pension action is another step in wrong direction

    When the General Assembly returned to the Capitol on Thursday to complete this year’s legislative session, one unresolved issue towered over the rest. Regrettably, the solution now set to become law is not the one we need, and the very way it was approved – late at night, before the bill could even be read – was a near-repeat of last year’s controversial and ultimately unconstitutional public-pension bill.