News Around the State

Published 2:25 pm Thursday, May 9, 2019

University of Kentucky in-state tuition climbing in fall

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto has announced in-state undergraduate students will see tuition increase by 2.4 percent this fall.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports the increase announced in a campus email sent Tuesday will bring the annual cost to $12,360. Out-of-state tuition will increase 6.2 percent to $30,680.

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Faculty and staff will share a 2 percent merit raise pool under the proposed budget. The university board will approve the budget in June. It already approved housing and dining rates, which will rise 3 percent for most students.

In-state tuition has risen 112 percent since 2005 and 46 percent in the past decade while state funding has been cut and costs have increased. The university relies more and more on tuition, especially from higher out-of-state rates paid by students who now make up about 35 percent of the student body.

Kentucky town picked for propane tank manufacturing plant

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky officials say a company plans to put a propane tank manufacturing facility in a south-central Kentucky town. The project is expected to create 175 full-time jobs in coming years.

Gov. Matt Bevin’s office said Wednesday that the $10-million-plus project by Manchester Tank & Equipment Co. is planned in Campbellsville.

Officials say the company will acquire and retrofit an existing building to expand operations and for production and supply of components to the company’s existing facilities.

Manchester Tank is a division of McWane Inc. McWane’s CEO and president, Ruffner Page, says the new Campbellsville operation will be a big contributor to the continued growth and success of Manchester Tank.

State officials have preliminarily approved McWane for up to $2 million in performance-based tax incentives through the Kentucky Business Investment program.

Student who sued over chickenpox vaccination has the disease

WALTON, Ky. (AP) — The lawyer for a Kentucky high school student who wasn’t allowed to participate in school activities because he wasn’t vaccinated for chickenpox says his client has now contracted the illness.

Attorney Christopher Wiest of Covington told The Kentucky Enquirer that 18-year-old Jerome Kunkel came down with chickenpox last week. Wiest says Kunkel is “fine” and “a little itchy.”

After an outbreak, students who weren’t vaccinated were ordered to stay away from Our Lady of the Assumption Church school and activities.

Kunkel sued the Northern Kentucky Health Department, claiming the vaccine is against his religious beliefs, and others joined in. A judge last month denied the request to return to activities.

Wiest said Tuesday about half his clients have contracted chickenpox since filing the case. He said he told parents that a child’s getting chickenpox would be the quickest way to resolve the case, since a bout of chickenpox confers immunity.

The Health Department said in a news release Wednesday that Wiest’s statement was “alarming and disappointing.” The department said people who contract chickenpox can expose others to the virus before the disease becomes apparent.

“While the tactic Wiest suggests may provide an individual with future immunity from chickenpox, this infected person can easily spread the virus to other, unsuspecting people, including those particularly vulnerable to this potentially life-threatening infection,” the department said.

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin said in March during an interview on Bowling Green radio station WKCT that he deliberately exposed his children to chickenpox so they would catch the disease and become immune. The Republican governor said parents worried about chickenpox should have their children vaccinated but suggested that government shouldn’t mandate the vaccination.

Kentucky requires that children entering kindergarten be vaccinated for chickenpox, but parents may seek religious exemptions or provide proof that a child already had the disease.

Kentucky police officer driving cruiser charged with DUI

CYNTHIANA, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky police officer is accused of driving under the influence in a city police car.

Thirty-year-old Lexington police Officer Jeffery Burden was relieved of his sworn duties and transferred to an administrative assignment while the case is investigated.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports Cynthiana police in Harrison County received a reckless driving complaint Tuesday morning involving a Lexington police cruiser that was failing to stay in its lane. An arrest citation says the cruiser reportedly nearly struck several signs.

Police say Burden’s cruiser entered a gas station and struck a red pole protecting the gas pumps. The arrest citation says Burden admitted he was taking Hydrocodone for back pain. He has been with the department since 2015.

3 ex-jail workers indicted in handcuffed inmate’s beating

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Three former corrections officers have been indicted in connection with the alleged beating of a handcuffed inmate at the Louisville, Kentucky, jail.

News outlets report a U.S. Department of Justice statement says the federal indictment Wednesday named David Schwartz, Devan Edwards and Donna Gentry.

Schwartz is charged with violating an inmate’s civil rights by assaulting the handcuffed inmate and writing false reports about the April 2018 incident. Edwards is also charged for playing a role in the alleged assault. Gentry is charged with obstruction of justice for filing a false report and directing a subordinate to file a false report.

Metro corrections director Mark Bolton fired Schwartz and Edwards after viewing video that appears to show Schwartz punching then-19-year-old inmate Terry Whitehead.

It wasn’t clear if the accused have attorneys.