Cave City voters approve package liquor sales


The Associated Press July 23, 2014

CAVE CITY, Ky. — Voters in Cave City have approved package liquor sales in a local option election.

The Daily News reported (http://bit.ly/1rJWlU5 ) that a total of 230 people voted in favor of allowing package sales with another 132 voting against it.

The results mean that Cave City will be allowed to have two full liquor stores.

The question on the ballot was “Are you in favor of the sale of alcoholic beverages in Cave City, Kentucky?”

By-the-drink alcohol sales have been allowed in Cave City since 2006.

Currently, two restaurants and the Cave City Convention Center are licensed to sell alcohol by the drink.

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2014/07/23/3348034/cave-city-voters-approve-package.html#storylink=cpy

Roaming horses are growing problem


There are many people in Breathitt, Knott and throughout east Kentucky who love horses but have limited space on their own properties to keep them due to the mountainous terrain.

At  the same time, there are many large landowners and coal reclamation sites that could provide lots of grazing area and ideal pastureland.

In the past, there has been a wonderful relationship between local horse owners and large private landowners to free-range one’s horses on someone else’s property.   These horse owners would check on their horses, make sure they were in good health, and either bring them home during the winter months when food was scarce up on the mountain or take both hay, grain and salt blocks to the horses when needed.   And there was an unwritten code that no stallions were to be free-ranged.   But that is no longer the case.

There is a growing number of horses up on reclamation sites.  Some are there with permission, but more and  more are being dropped off without permission by people who may or, in many cases, may not even live in the county.  And these individuals have no intention of checking on their horses, providing health care if they should get hurt or ill,  or for that matter, ever reclaiming them.   These horses have been abandoned.

Some of these horses are old, some are in poor health, but a large majority are in good shape and will live for years.

But it is not just the horses being dropped off that are a problem.  Stallions have been let loose on the reclamation sites and are now impregnating the mares whom, unchecked, may birth colts who grow up into studs and impregnate more mares — and the numbers just keep growing.  If one questions this, go to Mill Creek, Raven, Jones Fork or a number of other reclamation sites throughout the county and count the number of pregnant mares and the growing number of yearlings.   This unchecked growing population of horses has now put into jeopardy the relationship the responsible horse owners once had with the landowners.

A group of people are attempting to inventory all the free–ranging horses in Knott, Breathitt and surrounding counties to determine which horses are owned and which ones have been abandoned.  That way, if horses have already been identified and they end up somewhere they shouldn’t be, like the seven horses last week that ended up down on Ky. 80, six horses noted in the article on this page, or have ventured on still bonded reclamation sites, they could quickly be identified and their owners contacted before any permanent damage is done.  If the horses causing problems have been identified as abandoned then they would be available for immediate adoption to someone that would take responsibility for them.

Find the Troublesome Creek Times at local stores in Knott and surrounding counties or subscribe to the Times at (606)-785-5134

CONTINUE READING…

What Is Fracking and Why Should It Be Banned?


 

http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/FrackingWastePit_BGS_WEB.jpg

 

The case to ban fracking grows stronger every day. Fracking is short for hydraulic fracturing. It’s a water-intensive process where millions of gallons of fluid — a mix of water, sand, and chemicals, including ones known to cause cancer — are injected underground at high pressure to fracture the rock surrounding an oil or gas well. This releases extra oil and gas from the rock, so it can flow into the well.

But the process of fracking introduces additional industrial activity into communities beyond the well. Clearing land to build new access roads and new well sites, drilling and encasing the well, fracking the well and generating the waste, trucking in heavy equipment and materials and trucking out the vast amounts of toxic waste — all of these steps contribute to air and water pollution risks and devaluation of land that are turning our communities into sacrifice zones. Fracking threatens the air we breathe, the water we drink, the communities we love and the climate on which we all depend. That’s why over 250 communities in the U.S. have passed resolutions to stop fracking, and why Vermont, France and Bulgaria have stopped it.

Why a Ban? Can Regulations Make Fracking Safe?

Ban Fracking in Your Area

No. Fracking is inherently unsafe and we cannot rely on regulation to protect communities’ water, air and public health. The industry enjoys exemptions from key federal legislation protecting our air and water, thanks to aggressive lobbying and cozy relationships with our federal decision makers (the exemption from the Safe Drinking Water Act is often referred to as the Cheney or Halliburton Loophole, because it was negotiated by then-Vice President Dick Cheney with Congress in 2005). Plus, the industry is aggressively clamping down on local and state efforts to regulate fracking by buying influence and even bringing lawsuits to stop them from being implemented. That’s why fracking can’t be made safe through government oversight or regulations. An all out ban on fracking is the only way to protect our communities.

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Why the Obama Administration Will Not Admit that Fukushima Radiation is Poisoning Americans | Global Research


Why the Obama Administration Will Not Admit that Fukushima Radiation is Poisoning Americans | Global Research.

We all know that the radiation from the stricken Fukushima plant has spread around the globe and is poisoning people worldwide. We all know that the West Coast of the United States is being polluted with radioactive debris and that the oceans, the beaches that border them, and even the air is becoming more polluted by radioactivity as time goes on.

You have to ask yourself why the government won’t admit this. It’s not like a disaster half a world away is their fault, is it?

Or is it? Could the United States government have done something to prevent the situation getting to this point?

Nothing in this article is a state secret, everything is in the public domain, but the information is so disseminated that it appears disconnected.

Can Legalizing Marijuana Help Appalachia?


By Michael P. Tremoglie

 

NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Will legalizing marijuana help or hinder some of the poorest of Americans? Appalachia has long been known for intractable poverty, coal and moonshine. But what many do not know is that marijuana is an Appalachian cash crop.

Some say it will only help; after all, Appalachians make quite a bit of dough from grass. “Outdoor cannabis cultivation is common throughout the Appalachia…region,” reads a June 2007 report by the Department of Justice (DOJ). “The number of outdoor plants eradicated from grow operations in Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia increased from 1,004,329 in 2005 to 1,252,524 in 2006. Cannabis cultivators deliberately locate outdoor grow sites in remote areas of public and private lands to reduce the chance of discovery by passersby or law enforcement and, more commonly, to protect their crops from theft. Cannabis is cultivated in Kentucky on broad areas of privately owned land, in the Daniel Boone National Forest, and on the Cumberland Plateau.”

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What coca leaves are to the mountain people of Peru, marijuana is to the mountain people of America. These growers take their their marijuana cultivation seriously, too. They are not shy about using lethal force to protect it. The DOJ describes some of the efforts to protect crops, “Cannabis cultivators frequently use camouflage, counter surveillance techniques, and booby traps to protect their outdoor grow sites. …These sites are often protected by armed guards who conduct counter surveillance. Moreover, the use of booby traps significantly increased in 2006….some cannabis cultivators used punji sticks, which may be camouflaged by leaves and brush or incorporated into pits and explosive devices, to reduce the risk of crop theft.”

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Steward Will Run For Barren County Judge-Executive; Greer Not Running


“When I think that there is something going on that I think is corrupt, or I think that is inappropriate, or I think the taxpayers’ dollars are being wasted, then I will be contentious and I will be somewhat controversial.”

BARREN COUNTY, Ky. (WBKO) – Barren County Magistrate Chris Steward is adding his name to the mix to become the next Barren County Judge-Executive.

He said his number one priority is bringing jobs to the county.

“We have the infrastructure, we have the land. We have the work force, and I think economic development is a passion of mine,” said Barren County Judge-Executive Candidate Chris Steward.

Steward joins five other candidates in the race, but will not have to face current Judge-Executive Davie Greer, who officially told WBKO Monday, she won’t seek re-election.

“I just feel like at this time in my life that I want to spend more time with my family. They don’t want me to run either, so that’s mostly the reason,” said Barren County Judge-Executive Davie Greer.

Steward certainly has not shied away from the spotlight.

As a magistrate he was out in front of an investigation of the jail.

“When I think that there is something going on that I think is corrupt, or I think that is inappropriate, or I think the taxpayers’ dollars are being wasted, then I will be contentious and I will be somewhat controversial.”

However, Steward does think he could have handled it better.

“I think I owe some apologies to some people in which I voiced my opinion, perhaps I wasn’t as diplomatic as I should have been in certain areas,” said Steward.

WBKO asked, who are some of those people?

“Jailer Mutter, Judge Greer and others, I’m sure I could have worked with them better. I’m sure they could have worked with me better,” said Steward.

Steward announced recently but he said he will officially file Tuesday.

None of the other candidates in the race are current Magistrates, but the list includes democrats Brian Scott Taylor and W.R. Bud Tarry. Republicans in the race include David Honeycutt, Don “Goose” Gossett and Rob Strickland.

CONTINUE READING…

ALSO SEE HERE….

Japanese beverage giant Suntory Holdings has agreed to purchase American spirits maker Jim Beam.


 

 

DEERFIELD, Ill. (AP) – An iconic Kentucky original is being sold to a foreign company.

Japanese beverage giant Suntory Holdings has agreed to purchase American spirits maker Jim Beam. The all-cash deal is valued at $16-billion. Beam stock shot up in premarket trading today after the deal was announced.

Suntory is known for Yamazaki and Hakushu whiskies and Midori liqueur, as well as beers, wines, and soft drinks.

Beam is produced in Clermont, Kentucky, and is known for its brand-name products including Jim Beam bourbon, Maker’s Mark whisky, and Courvoisier cognac.

Suntory already distributes Beam’s products in Japan. Beam distributes Suntory’s products in Singapore and other Asian markets. Both companies’ boards unanimously approved the transaction, which is targeted to close in the second quarter. It needs approval from Beam Inc. stockholders.

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Suntory Holdings To Acquire Beam In $16 Billion Transaction

OSAKA, JAPAN and DEERFIELD, ILLINOIS – JANUARY 13, 2014 – Suntory Holdings Limited and Beam Inc. (NYSE: BEAM) today jointly announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Suntory will acquire all outstanding shares of Beam for US$83.50 per share in cash or total consideration of approximately US$16 billion, including the assumption of Beam’s outstanding net debt.

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Hunters Killed 20 Bears in Kentucky During Season


 

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — State Fish and Wildlife officials say hunters in Kentucky claimed 20 black bears during the season that ended in December.

It was the first season with a new expanded bear hunting zone and an archery and crossbow season.

Hunters can now hunt bears in 16 Kentucky counties, up from four counties in 2012.

In the recent season, hunters harvested eight male and two female bears during the firearms season. They took six males and four females during the archery and crossbow season.

Seven were killed in Letcher County, and three bears each were taken in Harlan, Leslie and Perry counties.

Modern-day bear hunting in Kentucky began in 2009.

CONTINUE READING HERE:

Cave City eyes work on strategic plan in ’14


 

Cave City 9.28.13 140

By JUSTIN STORY The Daily News jstory@bgdailynews.com

When it comes to planning for the future, Cave City officials are taking the long view.

Cave City’s City Council plans to hold a special meeting with the Kentucky League of Cities soon after the holidays on a date to be determined to learn about the work that will be involved in drafting a strategic plan that will guide the city’s development during the next several years.

The city’s proximity to Mammoth Cave National Park and its location along Interstate 65 have given Cave City a built-in advantage in attracting tourists, but Mayor Dwayne Hatcher hopes a strategic plan developed in consultation with the League of Cities will shine a light on Cave City’s other attractive qualities.

“We can’t put all our eggs in one basket, so to speak,” Hatcher said. “Tourism is a major factor here with our location, but we can’t just build solely on that. We’re working hard on infrastructure and industry here. … We can no longer be so dependent on tourism, although it is one of the major factors. We have so much more to offer, too.”

Two KLC advisers spoke at a recent council meeting about the benefits of a strategic plan and how the process of creating a plan can draw in the involvement of community members.

The KLC has been active as a consultant with other communities in the state that have drafted their own plans.

In 2011, Williamstown developed a strategic plan with input from community leaders, high school students and others that addressed a number of topics thought to be important to that city’s development, including restoration of downtown and diversification of the local economy.

Hatcher said Cave City’s process of putting together its own plan will involve extensive input and could take several months, if not longer.

“It’s a rather slow process, but it’s well worth doing,” Hatcher said. “With something this important, you don’t want to just rush into it. We want input from all of our citizens. … Hopefully, one thing we’ll create will be more involvement. We want people to feel that they are part of the community.”

Though not a member of Cave City government, Jeff Lawson wears many hats in the community as the owner of Cave Country RV Campground and the president of the Cave City Chamber of Commerce.

Lawson said he was aware the Cave City Convention and Tourism Commission has surveyed visitors for the past several months about their impressions of the area.

“Local people say things like they want more restaurants and more things to do, and visitors comment about empty buildings,” Lawson said. “That’s a real detraction because people come in and, instead of people, they see a dying town, and we don’t see it that way. We have a lot to offer, but for people driving in off the interstate they get the opposite impression.”

Lawson came to Cave City from Pennsylvania more than five years ago, leaving the restaurant business there to operate an RV park in the area. When deciding where to relocate, he centered on Cave City for its small-town atmosphere and its convenience to Mammoth Cave.

Lawson said he believes it’s important for as many people to be involved in the process as possible, and he hopes that the different segments of the community can agree on some common goals for the city’s long-term future.

“For the future, if we have a clear direction of who we are and what we want to accomplish, we can achieve it,” Lawson said.

— Follow reporter Justin Story on Twitter at twitter.com/jstorydailynews or visit bgdailynews.com.

Kentucky has more lakes suspected of having toxic algae


 

 

 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. —Kentucky has seven lakes suspected of having excessive levels of toxic algae, but state officials aren’t revealing which bodies of water are being targeted for a second round of tests.

Kentucky environmental regulators are drawing water from the lakes for a second time for more rigorous laboratory analysis after initial samples showed concentrations of blue-green algae worthy of health advisories.

Kentucky Division of Water official Clark Dorman said the lakes involved in the most recent advisory aren’t run by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Five Corps-run lakes were the subject of a recent advisory.

Even though the state’s initial tests suggested health risks to the public, dogs and farm animals, state officials are declining to identify those water bodies.

 

Read more: http://www.wlky.com/news/local-news/louisville-news/ky-has-more-lakes-suspected-of-having-toxic-algae/-/9718340/22411324/-/x31yeb/-/index.html#ixzz2hZAxiMlo

Furry intruder caught on camera (HERE’S THE BEARS!)


 

OHIO COUNTY, KY (WAVE) – A furry intruder was caught on camera in Western Kentucky.

A family went outside and found a black bear raiding their deer-feeder.

Wildlife officials suspect the young bear was either forced out of its territory in eastern Kentucky or Tennessee by another black bear and is wandering around trying to find a girlfriend.

In June, there was a bear sighting near Mammoth Cave and on July 12 five people in Daviess County reported they saw a bear near Masonville.

Experts said the bear appears to be a small and estimate he weighs between 100 and 150 pounds.

CONTINUE READING…

Stonehenge Was Actually Part of a Huge Ancient Complex, Researchers Discover


Originally posted on TIME:

For a disenchanted visitor to Stonehenge in the south of England, the iconic array of 4,000-year-old pillars may have signified little more than a pile of rocks. But a new discovery that Stonehenge was actually the heart of a huge complex of ancient burial mounds and shrines could win over even the most cynical observer.

Researchers at the University of Birmingham have found a host of previously unknown monuments, including ritual structures and a massive timber building that was likely used for burial of the dead during a complicated sequence of exposure and de-fleshing.

“New monuments have been revealed, as well as new types of monument that have previously never been seen by archaeologists,” Professor Vincent Gaffney, the project leader, said in a statement Wednesday. “Stonehenge may never be the same again.”

The project, which made use of remote sensing techniques and geophysical surveys, discovered large prehistoric pits, some of…

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5 arrested in protest against coal magnate Jim Justice in downtown Roanoke


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By Jordan Fifer and Jeff Sturgeon | The Roanoke Times

A group of protesters who unfurled a large banner criticizing coal magnate Jim Justice and the practices of his Roanoke-based mining company caused a spectacle in downtown Roanoke on Thursday morning, prompting a large police and fire response to take down the display.

Five people were brought away in handcuffs after the sign was strung between two midrise buildings shortly after 9 a.m., spanning busy Jefferson Street.

The sign was in protest of Justice, who lives in West Virginia but bases his company Southern Coal Corp. in Roanoke, three doors down from where the banner was hung. Southern Coal has been the target of state and federal regulators and activists for numerous documented environmental problems at 30 company mines in five states, including Virginia.

“JIM JUSTICE PROFITS APPALACHIA PAYS,” read black letters on one side of the large white banner, while the reverse claimed, “JIM JUSTICE: TOXIC SPILL BILLIONAIRE.”

The five — identified as Rebecca Marie Holmes, 23, of Wise County; Heather Glasgow Doyle, 30, of Blacksburg; Kyle Scott Gibson, 28, of Wise County; William E. Blevins, 32, of Wise County; and Catherine Ann MacDougal, 27, of Gloucester, Massachusetts — were charged with interfering with the property rights of the building owners, a misdemeanor, police spokesman Scott Leamon said. Each was granted a $1,500 secured bond but remained in jail as of Thursday afternoon.

Three groups with an environmental bent, two of them Appalachia-focused, claimed to have had a role in the banner incident. One, Mountain Justice, describes its goal as to “seek to save our mountains, streams and forest from greedy coal companies,” according to its website.

Another group, Radical Action for Mountain People’s Survival, also known as RAMPS and based in West Virginia, describes itself as “a non-violent direct action campaign” against strip mining. The third group that said it had a role, Rising Tide North America, based in San Francisco, is “confronting the root causes of climate change,” its website says.

D. Steele, a 23-year-old from Matewan, West Virginia, who gave only his first initial, said he was with RAMPS. As the demonstration wrapped up, he said the group aimed “to make Jim Justice be accountable for his unfair business and environmental practices.”

As of July, federal regulators were tracking 277 unabated or uncorrected environmental violations dating to 2011 at Justice company mines in Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee, said a spokesman for the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, a federal agency that polices mine operators. “Civil penalties are piling up,” Chris Holmes said.

The Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy has begun proceedings to seize money placed in safekeeping by the company to guarantee reclamation of disturbed mined land at four Wise County locations. The Justice companies are appealing that state action, and Justice has said reclamation of those mines would be premature.

Justice, who could not be reached Thursday, has said most of the 277 violations were paperwork-related. “I’m cleaning it up,” he said in July.

In the view of the Roanoke protesters, Justice is an environmental scofflaw.

“He chooses the cheapest practices at the expense of his own employees,” said 32-year-old Erin McKelvy of Lee County, who said she belongs to Mountain Justice and came out to support the cause. “For somebody who’s a billionaire, you would think he would be able to do a good job, pay off his debts and clean up the messes he’s made.”

Police and fire crews closed about a block off Jefferson Street between Campbell Avenue and Church Street for about 90 minutes while they removed the banner and escorted the protesters down from atop two buildings.

The protesters “had attached themselves to the base of the banner, using their weight to anchor it, and declined to move,” Leamon said.

The owner of one of the buildings asked police to remove the sign, he said.

Roanoke Fire-EMS Deputy Chief Jeff Beckner, who was on one of the roofs, said the protesters offered no resistance during their arrests.

Police confiscated climbing equipment in bookbags including carabiners, yellow safety vests and rope, police Sgt. J.H. Bowdel said. A photo posted on Facebook showed the protesters wearing the vests on the roof.

“Everyone made sure to take all the necessary precautions to protect themselves and everyone else,” Steele said.

No one was injured, he said, describing the incident as a deliberate public act to try to create public pressure without regard to what he called “the legality of the tactics.”

The protest became a midmorning spectacle, with perhaps 60 to 70 workers and pedestrians milling about and stopping to take photos.

Some said they supported the protesters’ efforts but were unsure what the cause was about. A few said though they supported the right to protest, it should be done in a safe way.

“You got to realize that you got this hanging up right here and it’s caused a lot of businesses problems, and also you got the law involved over something stupid hanging up,” said Roger Simmons of Roanoke. “If that thing falls down and lands on a car, you’re going to have a big accident right now.”

Asked about any public safety risk of the protesters’ efforts, McKelvy said people should be more worried about the message the group was spreading.

“The public safety concern is what Justice and his company is doing,” she said.

More Coverage

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NATO Authorizes New Rapid Response Force to Deter Russia


Originally posted on TIME:

NATO will create a new military force based in eastern Europe designed to mobilize quickly in the event of a hostile incursion into the region, officials said Friday.

“Should you even think of attacking one ally, you will be facing the whole alliance,” NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Friday at the close of a two-day summit in Wales. The sentiment echoes the decades-old principle at the core of the NATO pact that an attack against any member of the alliance is an attack against all members.

The rapid response force will consist of thousands of troops based in eastern Europe that will give NATO a “continuous presence” in the region, Rasmussen said. Countries will contribute land, air and sea forces to the new unit on a rotating basis, he added.

Concern over Russian expansion into the former Soviet Union’s sphere of influence in eastern Europe, including Ukraine, where the…

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Christian County preps for first hemp harvest


Hemp

Posted: Monday, August 25, 2014 7:13 pm | Updated: 10:48 pm, Mon Aug 25, 2014.

By Margarita Cambest, New Era staff writer | 0 comments

Though the bumper stickers might have made one think they were at a political rally, local law enforcement, farmers and officials from both major parties toured one of two industrial hemp plots Monday in Christian County.

For the first time in 50 years, the research crop was planted in June at Davis Farms in Pembroke and Rachel McCubbin’s llama farm in northern Christian County.

Two months later, both plots have shot up out of the ground. Much higher than knee-high in July, the Davis Farm plot towered well above even the tallest of those in attendance.

Hemp is illegal in the U.S. because of its similarity to the more-potent marijuana. The plot is one of many pilots planted across the state before the official start of summer.

With the support of both Democrats and Republicans, research plots of the crop were legalized through a provision in the federal farm bill. Kentucky, once a leader in industrial hemp production, ordered seeds from Italy bound for pilots across the state, but they were held up for more than a month in a customs battle with federal agencies. The state’s department of agriculture eventually filed suit in federal court to release the seeds and got them back after agreeing to additional paperwork.

The office of Sen. Rand Paul and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture hosted the tour.

McCubbin, Paul’s deputy state director, said her crop did not do as well after a summer with little rain. However, with more testing she said the crop could bring business to Kentucky.

“It’s not illegal to purchase or repurpose these hemp products. They can sell it all day long but our farmers cannot grow it here.”

Attendees also included Democratic Hopkinsville mayoral candidate and former state senator Joey Pendleton and former Democratic representative Fred Nesler, who now works for the agriculture department.

“We do know our state is ripe for growing it (and) we do know there are farmers willing to grow it,“ Nesler said. “There’s people out there that are interested in growing this crop.”

Although not officially endorsing hemp in Kentucky, local law enforcement officials are opening themselves up to the possibilities industrial hemp could bring to the state’s economy.

Hemp can be used in everything from food to construction materials. Although hemp products are not illegal, U.S. farmers have not been permitted to grow hemp until now. Instead, products like hemp bath products, clothing and insulation are made from hemp grown in other countries, with much of it coming from Canada. The Davis Farm plot will test the crop’s potential to be used for fiber and may be used to create a concrete-like mixture that is more weather-resistant than cement.

Christian County Sheriff Livy Leavell questioned law enforcement’s job ahead, specifically how the department would differentiate between marijuana and hemp. In size and shape the plants are identical, and both contain the hallucinogenic causing chemical THC.

“If we pull over an 18-wheeler full of hemp, how do we know the difference?” Leavell asked.

Although hemp does not contain enough THC to produce a high, when tested using a chemical that reacts to the presence of THC by a Trenton police officer, hemp tested positive.

“I don’t envy your job,” McCubbin said to law enforcement representatives present.

Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission member Katie Moyer said while the similarities in live plants may be uncanny, legal hemp growers would have necessary paperwork showing origin, destination and purpose.

Additionally, the state gives GPS coordinates of licensed growers’ plots to state police.

“Every trucker has a bill of lading,” Moyer said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re transporting Oreos or hemp.”

Moyer said it is also unlikely that hemp will be transported in its raw form as it will be baled and processed before shipping.

Reach Margarita Cambest at 270-887-3231 or mcambest@kentuckynewera.com.

CONTINUE READING…

Rare Bible found in Kentucky vault, returned to Notre Dame


Posted: Friday, August 29, 2014 2:30 pm | Updated: 6:00 pm, Fri Aug 29, 2014.

By Ronnie Ellis / CNHI News Service

NERINX, Ky. – Carol Pike isn’t Catholic, and technically she’s not an archivist. She’s a former college and high school librarian and an elder for her Disciples of Christ church in Glasgow, Ky.

So Pike may have been an unlikely figure in what’s best described as the re-discovery of a rare Catholic Bible, which for decades was stored in a vault at the Sisters of Loretto Community here and has since returned to the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind.

Pike spent years cataloging a rare book collection for the Sisters of Loretto, a congregation of nuns and lay co-members who “work for justice and act for peace because the Gospel urges us.” Founded in 1812 as a teaching order, the community’s headquarters  – the “Motherhouse” – is located in the central Kentucky community of Nerinx.

One day the community’s archivist, Sister Eleanor Craig, asked Pike if she’d like to examine some of the books stored in “the vault,” a secure, climate-controlled room in the basement of the infirmary.

After passing through two sets of steel doors, Sister Eleanor pulled a cardboard box labeled “Rare Bibles” from the shelf and handed it to Pike.

As she opened a carefully wrapped volume, Pike had a Eureka moment.

“This is a Carey Bible!” she exclaimed to Sister Eleanor, who didn’t immediately recognize its significance.

Pike realized she was holding a 1790 Catholic Bible – the Douay-Rheims version printed by Philadelphia printer Mathew Carey. He printed only 471 of the Bibles, of which 28 are known to still exist.

The one Pike held was exceptional even among those. The three-volume Bible – two for the Old Testament and a third for the New Testament – was owned by the first Catholic bishop in the United States, Bishop John Carroll of Baltimore. He’d inscribed the Bible to the first Catholic priest ordained in the United States, Father Stephen Badin.

CONTINUE READING STORY…

Glasgow Water Company wins highest Kentucky Rural Water Association honor


Posted: Monday, August 25, 2014 11:12 pm

BY MELINDA J. OVERSTREET Glasgow Daily Times

Glasgow Water Co. has been selected for the highest honor the Kentucky Rural Water Association bestows – the Wooden Bucket Award.

The award is presented to “a water and/or wastewater utility that has made substantial and lasting improvements in providing high levels of customer service and high quality drinking water and wastewater services in its community, including having shown exceptional efforts in meeting the needs of their communities, enhancing their operations, and complying with regulatory requirements,” according to a KRWA press release.

The framed award was presented at a luncheon last week during KRWA’s 35th annual conference and exhibition in Louisville.

“The Glasgow Water Co. is privileged to be nominated with the other finalists and honored to win the Wooden Bucket Award,” said Scott Young, GWC’s general manager. “The award is a demonstration of the direction of our board of directors, the vision of our management staff and an example of the commitment and dedication of all GWC team members.”

Tom Fern, state director of rural development, and Vernon Brown, community programs director, both with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development, presented all 10 finalists with plaques of recognition for outstanding service. The other utilities honored were Wingo Water and Sewer System, Christian County Water District, North Nelson Water District, Boone County Water District, City of Danville, Breathitt County Water District, Boyd County Sanitation No. 4, Southern Madison Water District and Somerset Utilities.

KRWA is a statewide, nonprofit association with offices in Bowling Green and Frankfort that has provided training, technical assistance, advocacy and other services to utilities in Kentucky since 1979. KRWA’s mission is to help water and wastewater utilities help themselves.

Gary Larimore, executive director of KRWA, said the organization tries to recognize utilities within certain categories – such as size and service area – across the state in its selection of finalists, he said.

He said GWC has been an outstanding organization for as long as he can remember, and he has been in his current position since he was hired as KRWA’s first employee 35 years ago.

“They’ve got several projects they’re working on, which tells me they’re looking toward the future and how they can address future regulations,” Larimore said, noting ongoing upgrades to the water and wastewater treatment plants. “They are just continually looking for better ways to serve their customers.”

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Why Synthetic Marijuana Is More Toxic To The Brain Than Pot


 

 

One of the original chemists who designed synthetic cannabis for research purposes, John W. Huffman, PhD once said that he couldn’t imagine why anyone would try it recreationally. Because of its deadly toxicity, he likened it to playing Russian roulette, and said that those who tried it must be “idiots.” Whether that’s the case or not, the numbers of users is certainly rising, and so are overdoses. New Hampshire has declared a state of emergency, and the number of emergency room visits for overdose from the synthetic drug has jumped. One teen died earlier this month after slipping into a coma, reportedly from using the drug.

Synthetic pot also goes by hundreds of names: Spice, K-2, fake weed, Yucatan Fire, Bliss, Blaze, Skunk, Moon Rocks, and JWH-018, -073 (and other numerical suffixes), after Huffman’s initials. Synthetic cannabis, unlike pot, however, can cause a huge variety of symptoms, which can be severe: Agitation, vomiting, hallucination, paranoia, tremor, seizure, tachycardia, hypokalemia, chest pain, cardiac problems, stroke, kidney damage, acute psychosis, brain damage, and death.

Why are the effects of synthetic cannabis so varied and so toxic? Researchers are starting to understand more about the drugs, and finding that synthetic cannabis is not even close to being the same drug as pot. Its name, which is utterly misleading, is where the similarity ends. Here’s what we know about what synthetic cannabis is doing to the brain, and why it can be deadly.

English: The so called "incense blend&quo...

The so-called “incense blend”: Spice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1. It’s much more efficient at binding and acting in the brain

One reason that synthetic cannabis can trigger everything from seizures to psychosis is how it acts in the brain. Like the active ingredient in pot, THC, synthetic cannabis binds the CB1 receptor. But when it binds, it acts as a full agonist, rather than a partial agonist, meaning that it can activate a CB1 receptor on a brain cell with maximum efficacy, rather than only partially, as with THC. “The first rule of toxicology is, the dose makes the poison,” says Jeff Lapoint, MD, an emergency room doctor and medical toxicologist. “I drink a cup of water, and I’m fine. I drink gallons of it in some college contest, and I could have a seizure and die. Synthetic cannabinoids are tailor-made to hit cannabinoid receptors – and hit it hard. This is NOT marijuana. Its action in the brain may be similar but the physical effect is so different.”

Another issue with synthetic is its potency, which huge. “Its potency can be up to one hundred or more times greater than THC – that’s how much drug it takes to produce an effect,” says Paul Prather, PhD, professor of pharmacology and toxicology at the at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. “So it takes much less of them to produce maximal effects in the brain. So these things have higher efficacy and potency…These things are clearly very different from THC and thus not surprising that their use may result in development of life-threatening adverse effects.”

2. CB1 receptors are EVERYWHERE in the brain

A central reason that synthetic cannabis can produce such an enormous variety of side effects is likely because CB1 receptors are present in just about every brain region there is. When you have a strong-binding and long-lasting compound going to lots of different areas of the brain, you’re going to get some very bad effects.

Yasmin Hurd, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology and Systems Therapeutics, and Neuroscience at Mount Sinai Medical Center, says that the wide distribution of CB1 receptors in the brain is exactly why they’re so toxic. “Where they’re located is important – their presence in the hippocampus would be behind their memory effects; their presence in seizure initiation areas in the temporal cortex is why they lead to seizures. And in the prefrontal cortex, this is probably why you see stronger psychosis with synthetic cannabinoids.” The cardiac, respiratory, and gastrointestinal effects probably come from the CB1 receptors in the brain stem. It might be any one of these that produces the greatest risk of death.

3. A synthetic cannabis overdose looks totally different from a pot “overdose”

The clearest proof that synthetic cannabis is a different thing all together is that overdose with the drug looks totally different from an “overdose” with natural marijuana. “Clinically, they just don’t look like people who smoke marijuana,” says Lewis Nelson, MD, at NYU’s Department of Emergency Medicine, Division of Medical Toxicology. “Pot users are usually interactive, mellow, funny. Everyone once in a while we see a bad trip with natural marijuana. But it goes away quickly. With people using synthetic, they look like people who are using amphetamines: they’re angry, sweaty, agitated.”

Whatever’s happening, he says, it may be more than just the replacement of THC with JWH. “It’s almost hard to imagine that it could be related to the partial vs. full agonist aspect of the drug.”

4. The body doesn’t know how to deactivate synthetic

One possibility is that the metabolites of synthetic cannabis are also doing damage to the brain. Usually our bodies deactivate a drug as it metabolizes it, but this may not be the case with synthetic. “What we’re finding from our research,” says Prather, “is that some of the metabolites of synthetic cannabis bind to the receptor just as well as the drug itself – this isn’t the case with THC. The synthetic metabolites seem to retain full activity relative to the parent compound. So the ability of our bodies to deactivate them may be decreased.”
He also points out that what’s lacking in synthetic cannabis is cannabidiol, which is present in natural marijuana and appears to blunt some of the adverse actions of the THC. But if it’s not there in synthetic cannabis, then this is one more way the drug’s toxicity may act unchecked.

English: Half a gram of JWH-018.

Half a gram of JWH-018. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

5. Quality control is nonexistent

Synthetic cannabis is made in underground labs, often in China, and probably elsewhere. The only consistent thing is that there’s no quality control in the formulation process. “Is Crazy Monkey today the same as Crazy Monkey tomorrow?” Prather asks. “No way. The makers take some random herb, and spray it with cannabinoid. They’re probably using some cheap sprayer to spray it by hand. How MUCH synthetic cannabis is in there? You have no idea how much you’re getting.” He adds that there are almost always “hot spots” present in the drug – places where the drug is way more concentrated than others. “Plus, there’s almost always more than one synthetic cannabinoid present in these things – usually four or five different ones.” The bottom line: There’s no telling what you’re getting in a bag of Spice or K-2.

6. The drugs are always evolving

“Someone’s just kind of riffing off JWH,” says Lapoint. There are hundreds of different forms of JWH, and of other synthetic cannabinoids designed by different labs, and the next one is always waiting to go. “It only takes a grad school chemist level to pull it off,” he says. “The first JWH in incense blends was found in Germany around 2008 – it was the JWH-018 in Spice. It took months for the local authorities to figure out what was in it and regulate it. The next week incense blends with another compound, JWH-073, came out. They already had it ready to go – and they’re making something that’s not even illegal yet. Since we started the conversation 10 minutes ago, we’re already behind.”

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Would legalizing marijuana kill the synthetic industry?

The demand for a “legal high” has been so great in recent history that it’s set the stage for the synthetic market to take off, says Lapoint. “It’s like the perfect storm. First we created black market by making marijuana illegal. Then there are all these loopholes in the legislation, so you can feed synthetics through when you change one molecule and call it a different drug.” As mentioned, it takes so long for the FDA to catch up – a year or more – that by the time one drug is made illegal, dozens of other iterations of the synthetic are already formulated and poised for release into the market.

His solution is a three-pronged: Changing the laws, by moving form a rule-based to a standards-based system, is the first step. “Right now, you either apply analog act to a new drug or make a new law. There will always be a loophole. So you have to move to standards-base. We really need good designer drug legislation reform.”

The second step is that get the public health message across that synthetic cannabinoids can kill. “Science has a poor understanding of how these drugs will effect you,” says Lapoint, “and the public has an even poorer understanding. People think ‘oh it’s just weed, just fake marijuana.’ Clearly the safety perception is way off. Let parents know, let kids know – this is not the same thing. You are experimenting with unknown compounds. You’re being a guinea pig. It’s not the same chemical, even among same brand. Medically, these drugs are a world of difference from THC.”

The last step, he says, is to continue the legalization discussion. Some states are leading the way. “You have to ask if you’re pushing people towards the scarier thing? The answer is ‘yes.’ It’s like prohibition where people made bathtub gin with methanol. We know people are going to use it. No athlete, soldier, student, or parolee wants to test positive for THC. So they just go to the head shop and get the ‘legal’ kind.”

Of course, it’s not legal at all, and it can lead to irreversible health problems and death. Whether legalization of natural marijuana is the solution isn’t totally clear. But remind your friends or kids that being a human subject in an uncontrolled synthetic drug experiment is just stupid. “This was never intended to be used in people,” says Lapoint. “It even says on the label, ‘Not for human consumption.’ Ironically, that’s the only accurate thing on the label. This is not marijuana. It should not be thought of like marijuana. We have to get this out there: Its effects are serious. It’s a totally different drug.”

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