Saturday, August 1, 2015

US 641 to reopen late today


Work to reconstruct the intersection where US 641 connects with US 62 in Eddyville is on track for completion sometime late today. The highway and intersection has been closed for 6 days, forcing traffic to reroute through Princeton or Dycusburg. 

Friday, July 31, 2015

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MCC extends nursing program deadline

Madisonville Community College (MCC) has extended the application deadline for the Integrated Nursing Program until Sept. 15 for the Spring 2016 program.  All applicants are required to attend a pre-admission conference. Conference dates are Aug. 21 beginning at 10 a.m. or Sept. 1 at 3 p.m.  All conferences will be held in the Byrnes Auditorium of the Hatley Building located on MCC’s Health Sciences Campus. Appointments are not required to attend.

Students applying for admission to MCC must complete and submit the following general admission requirements:

  • Application for admission.
  • Skills assessment test (ACT, Asset, or Compass): Minimum scores for the nursing program on the ACT/Compass are as follows:
  • - Reading: ACT of 20 or above and/or COMPASS of 85 or above.
    - Writing: ACT of 18 or above and/or COMPASS of 74 or above.
    - Math/algebra: ACT of 19 or above and/or COMPASS of 36 or above.
  • Official transcript(s) from any other college(s) attended, with completed transcript evaluation request.
  • High school transcript or GED scores.
In addition to the pre-admission nursing conference and the general admission requirements, students applying for the Integrated Nursing Program must:

  • Submit a completed MCC Nursing Program application (received only at the Pre-Admission Conference).
  • Submit a HESI A2 score of 75 or above for first semester applicants. Students must complete the following sections of the A2 exam: Math, Vocabulary, Reading, and Anatomy and Physiology. Contact the MCC Assessment Center at (270) 824-1702 to schedule a testing appointment.  A study guide for the A2 exam may be purchased at the MCC Bookstore.  The HESI A2 exam can only be taken once and the cost is $43.
  • Cumulative GPA must be 2.5 or above.

All nursing students are required to pass a criminal background check upon admission into the nursing program.

Students in the Integrated nursing program are chosen through a selective admission process based on cumulative points. The admission evaluation form will be provided during each pre-admission conference.

For additional information about MCC’s Integrated Nursing Program, visit the Programs of Study page under the Academics tab on the college website at

Press offering live Fancy Farm coverage

The 135th annual Fancy Farm Picnic is this weekend and that means the hottest political event in this region of the country is here. If you don't feel like braving the summer heat in Graves County Saturday, The Crittenden Press, in partnership with KET, will be offering you live coverage as politicians square off in this throwback to old-time politics.

Click on this link for a live blog of the event by KET's John Gregory starting Saturday morning. We will also provide links to speech videos following the event and a recap article about Fancy Farm 2015 will be posted here Sunday morning. At the bottom of this post will be live stream of the event, which starts at 1 p.m.

Following is a list of speakers at the Fancy Farm Picnic political rally Saturday:

  • State Rep. Richard Heath.
  • State Sen. Stan Humphries.
  • U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.
  • Gov. Steve Beshear.
  • Gubernatorial candidates Jack Conway (Democrat) and Matt Bevin (GOP).
  • Lt. Governor Crit Luallen.
  • Lieutenant Governor candidates Sannie Overly (Democrat) and Jenean Hampton (GOP).
  • Agriculture Commissioner James Comer.
  • Agriculture Commissioner candidates Jean Marie Spann (Democrat) and Ryan Quarles (GOP).
  • Attorney General candidates Andy Beshear (Democrat) and Whitney Westerfield (GOP).
  • Secretary of State incumbent Alison Grimes (Democrat) and candidate Steve Knipper (GOP).
  • Auditor incumbent Adam Edelen (Democrat) and candidate Mike Harmon (GOP).
  • Treasurer Todd Hollenbach.
  • Treasurer candidates Rick Nelson (Democrat) Allison Ball (GOP).

All candidates will have four minutes to speak except those running for governor, who will get an additional minute. A coin flip will determine the speaking order for candidates in their respective race.

Gov. Beshear and Sen. McConnell will each have five minutes to speak. Congressman Whitfield will be allowed three minutes, and all other office holder will get two minutes.

Milling, paving along U.S. 60/Hinkleville Road in Paducah starts Wednesday

A contractor for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet plans night milling and paving along U.S. 60/Hinkleville Road in Paducah starting Wednesday.

This night project runs along US 60/Hinkleville Road just west of the New Hold Road intersection extending eastward to just east of the Friedman Lane intersection, a distance of about a mile. This includes the section of U.S. 60 through the Interstate 24 Exit 4 Interchange and the Kentucky Oaks Mall area.

Motorists should be prepared to encounter milling starting Wednesday and continuing for about three nights. Paving is expected to follow starting around Aug. 10, and continuing for about a week.

Motorists should use appropriate caution where equipment, flaggers, and other personnel are along the roadway in close proximity to traffic flow.  This work zone will generally be active from about 8 p.m. to about 6 a.m. each night.

This project is being scheduled at night to help minimize traffic disruptions. Approximately 23,000 vehicles travel this section of U.S. 60/Hinkleville Road in an average day.

Jim Smith Contracting of Grand Rivers is the prime contractor on this $775,518 highway improvement project.

State falls short in saving for the future

Fewer than half of Kentucky’s 2012 workforce used a work retirement plan. In the shadows of unfunded liabilities in both of the state’s Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System and Kentucky Employees Retirement System non-hazardous pension funds, workers who have saved for retirement saved less than their average 2012 earnings. According to the National Institute On Retirement Security’s report issued Thursday, Kentucky has a six out of 10 score and measures well against many states, but still has room for improvement.

For the full story, visit The State Journal online.

Area death

Anna Lucille Cloyd, 96, of Marion died July 30, 2015, at Crittenden Health Systems. Funeral services were Saturday at Gilbert Funeral Home in Marion.

1985 state champs and more recognized

The annual border war high school football game between Crittenden and Caldwell counties will be Sept. 11 and that will also be the Alumni Game, where players from 1985 championship will be recognized on the 30-year anniversary. Also, the state semifinalist teams of 1963 and 2008 will also be recognized.

Organizers are trying to put together another old-timers football game on Saturday, Sept. 12. Stay tuned for more details on that effort.

Look for Church in Action Sunday

Click Image to Enlarge

Fall fishing carries new meaning this summer

Anglers become conditioned to expect high water on lakes in spring and stable conditions in summer before the fall drawdowns to winter pool.

After an unusually wet spring, this summer has been anything but predictable in Kentucky. High and falling water have added a degree of difficulty at a time when fishing can be challenging under normal conditions.

Lake levels have fluctuated wildly as parts of the state picked up 6, 8, and even 10 or more inches of rain over the past month. A change from widespread heavy rains to a more typical pattern of scattered afternoon showers has allowed many lakes to inch back closer to their prescribed summer elevations.

"We haven't had good, steady weather for a while," said Jeremy Shiflet, assistant northwestern fisheries district biologist for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. "If we can get a steady weather pattern for just a couple of weeks things should pick up quite a bit."

A good place to get a handle on what your lake is doing before you head out the door is the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' website for that district. The Louisville, Nashville and Huntington Corps' districts provide up-to-date water information for many lakes in Kentucky.

"See what the water's been doing," said Geoff Roberts, a conservation educator with Kentucky Fish and Wildlife and an avid bass angler. "See if it's coming up. See if it's stable. See if it's falling. That's going to determine where the fish are positioned."

Rising water that floods new habitat draws smaller baitfish shallow. Predator fish are apt to follow and may remain somewhat shallow if the lake stabilizes before falling.

Damp rings around tree trunks are a giveaway that water is being pulled quickly through the dam. Treat this as a sign that fish are likely to be retreating to deeper water.

"A lot of times during that hard drawdown either now or in the fall, we catch a lot of fish in our sampling nets because they're moving," Shiflet said. "Especially the mobile species - crappie, hybrids, white bass, walleye - they're all on the move. The water usually gets dirty and turbid, so it's hard for them to sight-feed. It takes them a little longer to really get cranking."

If largemouth bass are what you're after, resist the urge to pound the shoreline when the water is up and falling. Consider casting to the last row of visible vegetation or structure and note the contour of the bank.

"If you fish a flatter bank, then when the water comes up, that gives bass tons of areas to go," Roberts said. "But if you fish a steeper bank, even falling water doesn't affect those fish very much because the bank is straight up and down.

"I find it easier to fish those types of banks when the water is up and especially if it's falling because those fish don't get nearly as uncomfortable with falling water as the fish that have moved up on the shallow bank."

A power or finesse technique can be effective for bass in falling water conditions.

A finesse technique employing lighter line and smaller jigs or soft plastic lures draws strikes from lethargic fish when fished slowly. Power techniques use faster presentations with larger lures such as crankbaits, jerkbaits, spinnerbaits, topwaters and heavier jigs to trigger reaction bites.

"Some anglers say they really want to finesse them and target spots that they think are holding fish and go with a really small bait presentation," said Chad Miles, an avid angler who is the executive director of the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Foundation. "Some people will say, no, you need to power fish them because the fish don't want to move that much. They want to hit something and eat something big and be done with it for a while. Both options work depending on the day."

Many anglers don't have the luxury of being able to drop everything and fish when the weather and lake reports look favorable. They fish when they can.

An opportunity arose last week for Steve Reynolds to fish on Cave Run Lake near Morehead. The conditions looked and felt right in person even if a fishing report from the day before tempered expectations.

Heavy rains had pushed the lake's elevation to more than 10 feet above summer pool - high enough to close some boat ramps - and the Corps had started pulling water through the dam.

Even so, within two hours of launching from Alfrey Boat Ramp at sunrise, the Versailles resident hooked and lost two muskellunge on a crankbait in about 10 feet of water before landing a 45-inch trophy.

It was Reynolds' first encounter with a muskie and the catch qualified him for a Master Angler Award from Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. He successfully released the fish and now owns a memory from a trip when the conditions might not have been ideal but the opportunity to just get out and fish presented itself.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Gallatin County suspends almost entire road department after workers fail drug test

Members of Gallatin Fiscal Court have agreed to go along with Gallatin Judge-Executive Ken McFarland's decision to suspend almost every member of the county road department for a month without pay. The action was taken after the results of a surprise drug and alcohol test were received.

For the full story, visit the Gallatin County News online.

Overly pays visit to Marion

Sannie Overly, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor in Kentucky, made a campaign stop in Crittenden and Livingston counties today as she makes a swing through western Kentucky leading up to Saturday's political speaking at the annual Fancy Farm Picnic. Above, Overly, shown with Crittenden County Attorney Rebecca Johnson, speaks to a group of potential voters at Marion Cafe. Overly is the running mate of Jack Conway, Kentucky's attorney general.