Edmonson Voice Report:
A Grayson County man has been arrested and charged with murder as Kentucky State Police assisted the Grayson County Sheriff's Office with a suicide investigation, according to KSP.
State Police reported that they were contacted by the GCSO requesting assistance with a suicide investigation at 252 Decker School Road in Leitchfield. According to KSP, the Grayson County Sheriff's Office was able to obtain evidence that foul play was involved and not a suspected suicide as originally believed.
KSP charged Orbay L. Wilson, 28, of Leitchfield, with murder and tampering with physical evidence and he was later lodged in the Grayson County Detention Center.
KSP said the victim's identity is being withheld at this time. They also stated that the victim’s body was transported to the Kentucky Medical Examiner’s Office in Louisville for an autopsy to be conducted sometime today.
KSP was also assisted at the scene by the Grayson Co. Coroner’s Office and the Anneta Volunteer Fire Dept. The investigation is ongoing by Detective James Gaither.
Ban Includes Fireworks With Exception of Professional Displays
Darren Doyle, story:
Edmonson County Judge Executive Wil Cannon has issued a countywide ban on all outdoor burning due to extreme dry conditions, which includes lighting of fireworks.
The entire executive order from the Judge Executive's Office is published below.
EDMONSON COUNTY JUDGE EXECUTIVE ORDER
OPEN BURN BAN
June 29, 2022
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that due to excessive dryness and fire hazard conditions, pursuant to Kentucky Statute, I do hereby issue a “NO OUTSIDE BURN ORDER” county-wide, effective immediately, banning all open burning in all areas of Edmonson County.
This order includes the lighting of fireworks and burning of any materials outdoors.
A lack of rain in the past few weeks has produced very dry conditions which poses a risk of damage from wildfires, caused by open burning and fireworks.
Exceptions for use of fireworks in Edmonson County during this emergency ban, will be permitted for fireworks presentations supervised by pyrotechnical professionals, or may otherwise be permitted by Edmonson County Government.
It is hereby ordered that this ban be effective immediately; and will be lifted by order, after sufficient rainfall to abate hazardous conditions.
Kentucky Revised Statutes provides for penalties for violations of not less than $50 nor more than $500.
This 29th day of June, 2022
Edmonson County Judge Executive
U.S. Supreme Justices Vote 6-3 To Overturn 50 Year-Old Ruling
Darren Doyle, story:
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade, declaring, "The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives," according to the official text of the ruling.
Justice Samuel Alito, who wrote for the Court's majority, said that the 1973 Roe ruling must be overruled because the 50 year-old arguments were weak and damaging.
Those who agreed with Justice Alito's opinion were Justices Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett, as Chief Justice Roberts agreed in the judgment only, and said he would have limited the decision to upholding the Mississippi law (Dobbs vs. Jackson) which banned abortions after 15 weeks.
Dissenting were Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan.
"With sorrow — for this Court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection — we dissent," they wrote.
Multiple KY elected officials issued statements on today's ruling, including Governor Andy Beshear who posted comments on his social media.
"Today’s decision triggers an extremist Kentucky law that creates a total ban in Kentucky that will eliminate all options for victims of rape or incest," he posted to his official Twitter account. "As the former chief prosecutor of Kentucky, I know that these violent crimes happen, and not having options for victims of rape and incest is wrong."
Congressman Brett Guthrie's comments, as well as several other republican officials, had contrasting comments.
“Today’s ruling is a significant victory and sets a new precedent for unborn babies’ right to life," he said. "Despite the biggest breach in the Supreme Court’s history and justices being unlawfully harassed at their own homes, the Supreme Court majority opinion upheld pro-life protections in the Mississippi law and overturned Roe v. Wade. The question of abortion is now up to each individual state. Despite this monumental ruling, the work is never over to protect the dignity of life, especially with congressional Democrats’ extreme efforts to allow abortion on-demand up to nine months. I will continue to stand up for the right to life, vote for polices that prohibit federal taxpayer dollars from going towards funding abortions, and always push back against congressional Democrats’ radical pro-abortion agenda for America."
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron also supported today's ruling.
“Today is a day that many have hoped for—the issue of abortion has been returned to the people and to the states, where it belongs. This moment deserves to be celebrated, but it also calls for renewed commitment. Renewed commitment to life-affirming care for the unborn, for mothers, and for Kentucky families," Cameron said in a statement.
Kentucky Treasurer Allison Ball and Kentucky Auditor of Public Accounts Mike Harmon issued similar statements in support of today's ruling.
U.S. Senator Rand Paul also Tweeted support. His statement said, "This Supreme Court decision is a monumental step to not only protect life but also for the court to finally correct the mistake it made and return governance back to the people and their elected representatives. I’ve been the sponsor of a federal law to overturn Roe since I came to Washington, and I’m pleased to see the court make this decision today."
Abortion is still legal in over half the United States, despite today's ruling.
All abortions are now illegal in Kentucky, except where necessary to save the life of the mother.
Customers Are Encouraged To Conserve Energy When Possible
June 23, 2022 (Bowling Green, Ky.) While higher bills can be expected during summer heat waves, BGMU and Warren RECC customers should be aware of another factor affecting their bills this summer. On July 1, TVA’s Fuel Cost Adjustment (FCA) will nearly double, costing roughly 2 cents per kilowatt hour more than last July. Families who use 1,000 kilowatts per month will see an average increase of $20 compared to July of last year. If you consume more than average amounts of energy, the increase will be higher; if you consume less than average, the increase will be less.
TVA Fuel Cost refers to the cost of the fuels that TVA uses to generate electricity. Those fuels include the fuels that power the natural gas, nuclear, and coal plants that generate the electricity. TVA uses the Fuel Cost Adjustment (FCA) to help manage fluctuations in the cost of those fuels. The FCA does not refer to fuels like gasoline or diesel that power our fleets of vehicles. The FCA has remained steady for several years, but with global supply chain and inflation issues, the FCA has climbed in recent months. Fuel Cost Adjustment charges are determined by TVA monthly, and all money collected for the FCA is paid directly to TVA.
WRECC says that with the increased FCA and the summer’s record temperatures, consumers are encouraged to conserve energy as much as possible to help control costs. The best way to conserve energy is to raise your thermostat, especially during the hottest hours of the day. Other energy-saving tips include:
For those who may need help paying their electric bill, financial assistance is available. Call 2-1-1 for information about financial assistance in your community.
In addition, both BGMU and Warren RECC provide financial assistance through internal programs. For BGMU customers, contact the Bowling Green Warren County Welfare Center for more information about assistance available through their Customer Assistance Program. For Warren RECC members, please visit your local Community Action Agency to learn more about assistance available through their Operation Warm Hearts program. To find a Community Action office near you, visit www.capky.org.
Edmonson Voice Report:
A 25 year-old woman died in a collision on Mammoth Cave road on Wednesday, according to Kentucky State Police.
On Wednesday, June 22nd, 2022, at approximately 1:00 p.m., Kentucky State Police Post 3 was requested by the Barren County Sheriff's Office to investigate a two-vehicle injury collision in Barren County. Troopers responded to the scene located at the intersection of Mammoth Cave Road and Old Mammoth Cave Road.
KSP said that according to the investigation, Melanie Carroll (25) of Goshen, KY, was operating a 2001 Volvo westbound on Mammoth Cave Road when she failed to see a vehicle that was stopped in traffic in front of her, waiting to turn. Carroll swerved left into the eastbound lane and struck a 2014 Jeep Wrangler operated by Piotr Szymczyk (44) of Bayonne, NJ, head on, KSP stated.
Melanie Carroll was pronounced deceased at the scene by the Barren County Coroners Office. A passenger in the Volvo, Anna Dolliver (24) of Lakeway, TX, was flown to the University of Vanderbilt Hospital while Piotr Szymczyk was transported to T.J. Samson Hospital and treated for minor injuries, according to KSP.
The investigation is being led by Detective Michael Waggener. He was assisted at the scene by Barren County EMS, Barren County Sheriff's Office, Air Methods, Cave City Fire Department, Barren County Coroners Office and KSP personnel.
Edmonson Voice Report:
A Brownsville man was arrested and faces endangerment and criminal abuse charges after an altercation on Brownsville Road on Sunday evening, according to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
The Sheriff's Office stated that on June 19, 2022, at approximately 5:47 pm, local deputies were dispatched to the 3700-block of Brownsville Road for a fight in progress that involved a handgun. Law enforcement stated that on arrival, they located two adult males, one adult female, and two juveniles in the driveway of the residence. A female confirmed with law enforcement that the handgun in question was inside of an unoccupied vehicle and deputies retrieved and safely housed a Taurus 9mm, which was found to be loaded with a round in the chamber, according to the Sheriff's Office.
After questioning all subjects at the scene, it was determined that one of the male subjects, identified at Jordan K. Gray (31), had physically assaulted one of the juveniles and then exited the home with a handgun, at which point an altercation involving the gun allegedly ensured between Gray and another male subject, the Sheriff's Office said. Officials also said the handgun altercation occurred in close proximity to the two juveniles and the female.
Gray was arrested on scene and charged with:
Darren Doyle, story:
State Auditor Mike Harmon has released the audit of the financial statement of the Edmonson County Fiscal Court for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2021. State law requires annual audits of county fiscal courts, and while Harmon's office found two violations, no further review is needed and the county was not assessed any penalties or fines.
Auditing standards require the auditor’s letter to communicate whether the financial statement presents fairly the receipts, disbursements, and changes in fund balances of the Edmonson County Fiscal Court in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. The fiscal court’s financial statement did not follow this format. However, the fiscal court’s financial statement is fairly presented in conformity with the regulatory basis of accounting, which is an acceptable reporting methodology. This reporting methodology is followed for 115 of 120 fiscal court audits in Kentucky.
As part of the audit process, the auditor must comment on noncompliance with laws, regulations, contracts, and grants. The auditor must also comment on material weaknesses involving internal control over financial operations and reporting.
The audit contains the following comments:
1. The Edmonson County Fiscal Court does not have adequate internal controls over procurement: This is a repeat finding and was included in the prior year audit report as Finding 2020-001. During Fiscal Year 2021, the Edmonson County Fiscal Court had material weaknesses over procurement. The following findings were noted regarding the Edmonson County Fiscal Court’s procurement process:
• The fiscal court failed to keep documentation of state contract prices for three purchases totaling $95,441 that were made from state contract vendors.
• The fiscal court paid for courthouse elevator repairs in the amount of $36,900. The treasurer was instructed by an Administrative Office of the Courts facilities administrator to mark the job as an emergency repair. In lieu of utilizing competitive sealed bidding under KRS 45A.365, the county used noncompetitive negotiation under KRS 45A.380 to procure the services of the company that provided maintenance for the elevator pursuant to an elevator service agreement. In doing so, the county judge/executive failed to make the written determinations required by that statute, Moreover, contrary to KRS 45A.343(2), the contract with the elevator service company did not include disclosures by the contractor and subcontractors of violations of, and compliance with, specified statutes.
• The fiscal court orders state that all road materials bids were accepted. The ability to award multiple bids was not included in the bid solicitation.
• On November 23, 2020, the fiscal court approved to advertise for bids for a paver. At that same fiscal court meeting, the fiscal court approved for the road supervisor to travel to Florida to look at a paver. When the road supervisor returned from Florida, he brought a sealed bid from the company whose paver he had examined. This sealed bid was dated December 1, 2020. However, the bid advertisement did not run in the newspaper until December 3 and 10, 2020. This advertisement was specific for a 2015 Caterpillar AP1055F track paver, which was the same year, make, and model of paver that the road supervisor had previously traveled to Florida to inspect. On December 14, 2020, the fiscal court approved the purchase of the paver in the amount of $148,000 from the company in Florida. However, there was no mention made of opening or accepting bids in the fiscal court orders.
• The bid accepted for asphalt had a clause for fluctuation in petroleum-based products, allowing the vendor the right to adjust the proposal price (+ or -) at the time of installation to reflect changes in petroleum-based products using the Kentucky Average Price Index (KAPI) as published by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. The county treasurer emails the vendor at the beginning of each month to get the new asphalt price and she verifies the increase with the KAPI. However, there was no documentation to support the verification of the KAPI or that the amount per the invoice is correct.
The county judge/executive stated that the fiscal court makes it a practice to accept all bids for road materials to allow the county to use the vendor that has the best price in relation to the location of the road project. Additionally, the county treasurer stated she was not aware that it was necessary to maintain the supporting documentation for state contract vendors.
As a result, the fiscal court was not in compliance with procurement laws or their administrative code. In addition, the fiscal court might not have received the best value for services or products provided. Strong internal controls require management to monitor disbursements and purchase orders to ensure compliance with procurement laws, and to keep good records of all bids and other procurement transactions. Good internal controls would also include requiring the documentation of agreement of bid elements included on invoices, such as the KAPI amounts, to sources referenced in the original bid documents or specifications as part of state contract memorandum of agreement.
KRS 178.140(1) states, “[a]ll bids for the construction or maintenance of county roads and bridges shall be received at the time and place specified in the advertisement and shall be opened publicly at the time of awarding, and the amount of items comprising each bid shall be publicly announced.” In addition, KRS 178.140(2) states, “[t]he contract shall be awarded to the lowest and best bidder, who shall furnish satisfactory security in an amount equal to the amount of the contract in question, to be approved by the county judge/executive of the county.”
KRS 45A.365(1) states, “[a]ll contracts and purchases shall be awarded by competitive seal bidding, which may include the use of a reverse auction, except as otherwise provided by KRS 45A.370 to 45A.385[.]” Additionally, KRS 45A.365(2) states, “[t]he invitation for bids shall state that the award shall be made on the basis of the lowest bid price or the lowest evaluated bid price. If the latter is used, the objective measurable criteria to be utilized shall be set forth in the invitation for bids. The invitation for bids shall include the reciprocal preference for resident bidders described in KRS 45A.494.”
KRS 45A.355(1) states, “[e]very determination required by this code shall be in writing and based upon written findings of the public official making the determination. These determinations and written findings shall be retained in the official contract file.” Additionally, KRS 45A.380 states, in pertinent part, “[a] local public agency may contract or purchase through noncompetitive negotiation only when a written determination is made that competition is not feasible and it is further determined in writing by a designee of the local public agency that:
(1) An emergency exists which will cause public harm as a result of the delay in competitive procedures;
(2) There is a single source within a reasonable geographical area of the product or service to be procured;
(3) The contract is for the services of a licensed professional, such as attorney, physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, certified public accountant, registered nurse, or educational specialist; a technician such as a plumber, electrician, carpenter, or mechanic; or an artist such as a sculptor, aesthetic painter, or musician, provided, however, that this provision shall not apply to architects or engineers providing construction management services rather than professional architect or engineer services[.]”
Additionally, the Edmonson County Administrative Code Sections 420.4 regarding selection of vendors and contracts states, in part, “[s]ealed bidding procedures shall be followed under the circumstances, conditions and in the manner as set forth by KRS 45A.365.” The Edmonson County Administrative Code Section 420.7 regarding selection of vendors and contracts states, “[t]he County Judge/Executive shall submit the bid selected to the Fiscal Court for approval and thereafter shall notify in writing all bidders of the award. If the lowest bid is not selected, the reasons for the selection shall be stated in writing.”
We recommend the fiscal court implement internal controls to monitor all procurements in order to ensure that all required elements of bidding procedures are followed. The fiscal court should also ensure that bid prices and other elements included in approved bids, agree to the invoices submitted by vendors. We further recommend the fiscal court document these procedures in the fiscal court minutes and in the bid files including documenting the acceptance of the winning bid in writing in accordance with their administrative code and to be in compliance with KRS 178.140 as it relates to construction or maintenance of county roads and bridges. If the fiscal court does not accept the lowest bid for road materials, they should document the reason in the fiscal court minutes.
County Judge/Executive’s Response:
• We do not agree with this violation as the state contracts were printed and provided to the Auditor upon immediate request. The State Vendor Contracts for the 3 purchases that were audited were supplied to the Auditor the day they were requested, they had not been printed due to the size of the documents. Going forward the state vendor contracts will be printed and attached to the purchase invoice.
• The Judge Executive office was unfortunately not aware of the requirements of the Emergency Executive Order for the elevator repair, and if this shall arise in the future we will proceed correctly.
• Road Material Bid will include the multiple vendor bids in the future advertisement.
• The Fiscal Court will make bid advertisement more open to multiple vendors in future advertisements.
• We do not agree with this violation due to the fact that the Treasurer follows the KAPI on a monthly basis and even communicates with asphalt company at the first of each month to guarantee the county is paying the correct amount, even having a chart hanging in her office to reflect the monthly price, this along with all the saved emails from the asphalt company, all asphalt invoices are reconciled to an extremely detailed breakdown, including the price on each rock/asphalt ticket. The Judge Executive Office feels this never should have been a violation from the Auditor’s, as this step that the Treasurer does is not a requirement, this is her own procedure for her to ensure the County is charged properly. We highly disagree with this violation.
Auditor’s Reply: The issue with the state price contracts is not whether they were printed prior to audit, saved electronically prior to audit, or printed on demand during the audit, but rather that at no time was documentation as to the actual pricing under the state contracts retained or provided to APA. While the treasurer stated she verified amounts to the Kentucky Average Price Index (KAPI), auditors were not provided any documentation to support that this procedure was actually performed.
2. The Edmonson County Fiscal Court failed to accurately record activity of the general fund and road fund on the fourth quarter financial report: The Edmonson County Fiscal Court’s fourth quarter financial report required audit adjustments to the general fund and road fund. Funds of $218,537 were transferred per the road fund cost allocation worksheet from the road fund to the general fund. Instead of recording the transaction as a transfer, it was recorded as a receipt to general fund and disbursement to the road fund.
Due to the bank accounts associated with these funds, which are in different banks, the county treasurer had to write a check from one bank to another since an inter account transfer was not optional. When the transactions were entered in the accounting system, the treasurer could not determine how to record as a transfer between funds.
As a result of the activity, a transfer of $218,537 was incorrectly posted as a disbursement of the road fund and receipt of the general fund, which overstated the total operating receipts for the general fund and total operating disbursement for the road fund.
KRS 68.210 gives the state local finance officer the authority to prescribe a uniform system of accounts. Pursuant to KRS 68.210, the state local finance officer has prescribed minimum accounting and reporting standards in the Department for Local Government’s (DLG) County Budget Preparation and State Local Finance Officer Policy Manual. Those standards require an accurate financial statement.
We recommend the fiscal court determine a way to enter transfers between different bank accounts correctly in the accounting system in order to reflect an accurate fourth quarter financial report.
County Judge/Executive’s Response:
We were made aware of this issue in the FY20 audit but unfortunately did not have time to correct it due to the fact the State Auditor’s were in a rush to begin work on our FY21 audit. This has been corrected for FY22.
Auditor’s Reply: We disagree that APA was “in a rush to begin work,” as we engaged to perform our work (January 14, 2022) more than six months after the close of the fiscal year (June 30, 2021). Delays in completing the previous audit by a private CPA retained by the fiscal court are outside of our control.
Edmonson County Judge Executive Wil Cannon gave a statement on the audit to the Edmonson Voice.
"We appreciate the time and efforts the state auditors take to ensure every K.R.S. statute is met by our Fiscal Court," he said. "We are overall pleased by the results of the FY2021 audit, as the results continue to show improvements year after year in our paperwork and accounting procedures. The FY2021 audit gives us more details we can fine tune to make sure we are utilizing the county's funds exactly as the state says."
Michael Goins, Communications Director for the APA Office said no further review was needed, which occurs with more serious infractions.
"APA is a reporting agency, meaning if our auditors in the course of their work find anything that needs to be reviewed by another agency, we would make a referral in our audit report," he said. "There are no referrals in the Edmonson Fiscal Court audit for 2021."
Darren Doyle, story:
Two Tennessee residents are facing drug trafficking and alcohol-related charges after deputies say they saw them with open alcoholic beverages in the vehicle they were in when they pulled up beside law enforcement at local gas pumps on Saturday.
According to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office, deputies stopped at Z-Mart in Sweeden to fuel their patrol vehicles around 3:30PM on June 18, 2022 when they saw a vehicle at the pumps with two individuals with open alcohol containers.
The Sheriff's Office identified the occupants as Stanley Harvel (52) of Milan, TN and Nyla O. Sharpe (19) of Memphis, TN. According to the Sheriff's Office, while deputies were conducting a probable cause search for alcoholic containers, they discovered drug paraphernalia related to marijuana use inside the vehicle. Further search of the vehicle resulted in the discovery of a locked floor safe containing multiple bags of sealed marijuana and suspected Hydrocodone pills (in a prescription bottle that did not belong to Harvel or Sharpe).
Both Harvel and Sharpe were arrested and charged with:
Both were lodged in Hart County Jail.
Darren Doyle, story:
A Mammoth Cave woman was arrested on trafficking and other drug charges after a complaint call was answered by the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
According to a press release, a deputy was dispatched to the 800-block of Ollie Road around 5PM on June 16, 2022 for a complaint claiming an individual identified as Karen L. McClellan (51) of Mammoth Cave not only had multiple warrants, but that she had also allegedly stolen medications from a senior citizen in her care. Upon making contact with McClellan, she was found to be in possession of multiple marked and unmarked prescription bottles, all with multiple forms of suspected controlled substances, as well as over $500 in cash, and that only two of medications were listed in McClellan's name.
She was arrested and charged with:
McClellan also had three outstanding warrants from Jefferson County; one was for failing to appear on traffic violation charges; another was for a felony charge of Theft by Unlawful Taking or Disposition- All Others $500 or more but under $10,000; and the third was for Theft by Unlawful Taking or Disposition All Others $500 and Felony Theft of Legend Drug- 1st Offense, according to the Sheriff's Office.
McClellan was lodged in Hart County Jail.
Multiple Drug, Alcohol Arrests
Darren Doyle, story:
Deputies with Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office spent a considerable amount of time in the Lincoln community of Edmonson County this past weekend due to an influx of traffic in the area for the annual Redneck Rave at Blue Holler Off Road Park on Ollie Road, according to a press release from the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
Traffic Safety Checkpoints were conducted on Nolin Dam Road, which resulted in numerous citations and arrests. There were also three arrests on Ollie Road in connection with traffic from the event and one juvenile cited.
Arrests from June 17, 2022:
The Sheriff's Office also reported that multiple individuals were charged with underage alcohol-related incidents as well as traffic violations.
Additionally, Deputies with Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office assisted Lincoln Volunteer Fire Department and Edmonson County EMS with five medical-related calls at Blue Holler Off Road Park, the release stated. The Sheriff's Office also reported a female who went missing for several hours after getting lost on the trails inside the park. Edmonson County Sheriff’s Department, Lincoln Volunteer Fire Department, and Kentucky State Police assisted with the successful search.
"While there wasn't as much activity this year as there was last year, the sheer volume of people in the community and the nature of the illegal activity that is rampant during this event puts a lot of stress on all the emergency services in our county," said Sheriff Shane Doyle. "I am very appreciative of dispatchers, EMS, and our volunteer fire departments, as well as our sister police agencies for the cooperation we had this weekend. The Edmonson County Sheriff's Office remains committed to protecting and serving our county and we are proud of the work that was done this last week."
Darren Doyle, story and photos:
A single vehicle accident shut down a portion of Chalybeate School Road on Monday afternoon that sent one man to the hospital with unknown injuries.
According to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office, Edwin Tyler Duff, (36) of Leitchfield, was operating a 2008 Mazda 3 sedan southbound on HWY 743 (Chalybeate School Road) on Monday, June 13, 2022 around 3:40PM. The Sheriff's Office said that a witness stated that the car veered off the right side of the roadway and collided with a tree without slowing down.
Duff was transported to the Medical Center in Bowling Green by Edmonson EMS for unknown injuries.
In addition to the Sheriff's Office, also responding was Brownsville Police, Chalybeate and Wingfield Fire Departments, and Edmonson County Emergency Management
Dangerous Heat and Humidity in Forecast Throughout the Week
Edmonson Voice Report:
Effective at 2 p.m. today, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is urging Warren RECC and its members to reduce electric usage as much as possible during the hours of 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. daily until further notice. Unusually warm temperatures are causing greater demands on the electric system, which could affect reliability.
Consumers are encouraged to take proactive steps to reduce electric use. One of the simplest ways to do this is by turning up the thermostat. Raising the thermostat even one degree can help reduce the demands on our electric system and result in a savings on a monthly bill. Other ways to reduce electric usage include delaying using heat-producing appliances like stovetops, ovens, and dryers during peak demand periods and using the microwave oven or grilling outside to keep the kitchen cooler. Additionally, closing window coverings on the sunny side of the house to block sunlight during the warmest parts of the day can help save electricity.
During temperature extremes, don’t forget to check on relatives, friends, and neighbors to ensure their safety. Pets and livestock will also need a helping hand to remain safe.
To report power outages In Warren County, call 270-843-9710; outside Warren County, call 1-888-604-4321. Outages may also be reported through the SmartHub app or by texting #out to 85700 if you are signed up for WRECC texting.
To see current outages, visit www.wrecc.com and click the “View Current Outages” icon.
Today's heat index had reached 100 degrees before 10AM today. Current readings in the county at the time of this article showed 94 degrees with a 107 degree heat index.
Madison Doyle, story:
Fiscal court was held today, June 13, 2022. The second reading of the county's annual budget for the next fiscal year was read and approved in the amount of $11,419,186.98, which is up from $7.5 million more than last year due to grants, including FEMA, ARPA, and CDBG funding.
Funding secured through FEMA has helped the county with a number of road and flooding projects, portions of the ARPA funding (American Rescue Plan Act) have been earmarked throughout the year for various projects, and Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) have also been placed into the budget.
Road Report: County Road Supervisor Greg Carroll reported that crews made a few repairs since the last meeting. He said they have finished blacktopping half of Basham Road, and are holding off on finishing the rest until more FEMA money is available.
EM Director Report: Emergency Management Director Terry Massey reported that there have been no major episodes since the last fiscal court meeting.
Sheriff Report: Sheriff Shane Doyle reported that due to a change in office staff, the Sheriff's hours are changing. On Monday through Friday, the office will be open from 8 am - 4pm, with the exception of Thursday, on which they will be open for a half-day.
Jailer Report: Todd Vincent reported that there are 38 current inmates housed at Hart County Jail.
County Attorney Report: County Attorney Greg Vincent reported that he met with Adam Turner, who will be taking Vincent's place as County Attorney in January, to familiarize him with some contracts and give him a better understanding of some responsibilities he will have once in office.
Tourism Report: Vanessa Ulm reported that the Tourism Commission has seen positive results over the past couple of weeks. She said that the Big Brownsville Bash, hosted by the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce brought in a record crowd on the square during the car show. She also mentioned that Kayaks and More will be at the Byrd Center this Saturday for their "Demo Day." She said this is for anyone who wants to come learn how to use a kayak properly.
Road material bids for Edmonson County were read aloud from different quarries in close location to Edmonson County. The fiscal court voted to accept all bids, and use whichever entity is closest and more efficient for their need at that time.
Magistrates also voted to:
The next fiscal court meeting is scheduled for June 27, 2022 at 9 am.
Guthrie, Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee Republicans Seek Answers on FDA’s Response to Baby Formula Shortage
WASHINGTON, D.C.- Congressman Brett Guthrie (KY-02), who serves as the Republican Leader of Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee, along with House Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Republican Leader Morgan Griffith (VA-09), are requesting the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) be transparent and provide memos and reports that were sent to the White House on the baby formula shortage.
In a letter to FDA Commissioner Robert M. Califf, M.D. the members wrote, “In addition, the timeline of infant formula related activities provided as part of FDA’s testimony for the same hearing notes that on February 16, 2022, FDA submitted ‘a report to U.S. government (USG) partners on the potential recall and supply chain impacts given the significant market share held by Abbott Nutrition, as well as the Sturgis facility being a critical producer of specialty metabolic and amino acid formulas.’ However, during a White House roundtable on June 1, 2022, hosted by administration officials and infant formula manufacturers, President Biden stated that he was not briefed about the infant formula shortage and how intense it was until April 2022. Furthermore, U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo recently stated that she ‘probably’ did not learn about the infant formula crisis until April, and that she is not ‘involved in the administration’s response.’ Thus, it is important to understand how and when the infant formula issues were communicated and described by the FDA to the White House and other USG partners.”
Guthrie, Rodgers, and Griffith are requesting the following from the FDA in their letter:
This letter to the FDA to get answers for parents follows the bill Guthrie introduced on June 9, 2022, to help prevent future shortages of baby formula and help address the current shortage. Click HERE to learn more about the More Options for Infants and Parents Act. Guthrie is also a co-sponsor of the Babies Need More Formula Now Act and supported Access to Baby Formula Act, which is now law.
Darren Doyle, story:
Work is expected on three different KY HWY areas in Edmonson County during the week of June 10 through June 17, according to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet District 3.
The following areas will be impacted and drivers are advised of potential delays or slower required speeds:
Edmonson Voice Report:
Some members of WRECC are now able to receive discounts for NCTC high-speed internet service.
Warren RECC and telecom partner NCTC have announced they have partnered with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to help defray the cost of installing and maintaining high-speed internet access for Warren RECC members that qualify for the FCC Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). Through this partnership, Warren RECC and NCTC will add to the benefits of the ACP in the Warren RECC territory by providing $100 credit toward drop and installation costs to eligible members. NCTC is already a qualified provider under the FCC program, which provides up to $30/month discount for broadband services and a one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, desktop computer, or a tablet.
“In 2019, we began our partnership with NCTC, and we are proud of what we have been able to accomplish toward closing the digital divide in the Warren RECC service territory in that time. Today, we are excited for the opportunity these additional funds will bring to our membership by reducing some of the barriers to entry for our low-income members. We are truly thankful to TVA for their partnership in this effort,” said Dewayne McDonald, President and CEO of Warren RECC.
“The past two years have shown us that high speed internet is no longer optional, but a true necessity. We have been amazed to see the demand in Warren County and have been happy to partner with Warren RECC to help families and businesses succeed in this new era. Now, with help from TVA, we are able to make high speed internet even more accessible to many Warren County residents,” said Johnny McClanahan, President and CEO of NCTC.
Not only Warren residents, but also Edmonson, and all WRECC customers that qualify.
Funding through the Warren RECC/NCTC partnership will be matched by TVA’s COVID-19 Community Care Fund which helps local power companies meet immediate needs in their communities by providing matching funds for local initiatives addressing hardships created by this pandemic.
“Access to broadband and technology is critical for success in the modern-day world, and this partnership will help close the gap for Warren RECC customers,” said Jeannette Mills, TVA executive vice president and chief external relations officer. “This announcement demonstrates the strength of our community energy model’s ability to quickly deliver needed solutions while helping ease the burdens on families and communities.”
For additional information about Warren RECC, visit www.wrecc.com. For more additional information about NCTC, visit www.nctc.com. For additional information about TVA, visit www.tva.gov.
Record Crowd Visits Square At Event
Madison Doyle, story and photos:
The Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce's first-ever Big Brownsville Bash was held over a three-day period this past weekend, which saw a record number of people at the courthouse square on Saturday during the event's biggest day.
Chamber President Darren Doyle said that the feedback from the community was extremely positive overall.
"We are very pleased with the community support and turnout for this event," Doyle said. "With basically an all-new Chamber board, we all came in after the initial planning for this event had already begun. Honestly, we didn't realize what we'd gotten ourselves into because of the amount of work we'd have to do to make it happen. After we saw that the initial plan was going to need a ton of work, some of the board stepped up, along with our Big Bash Committee, and, well I guess it worked."
The committee was comprised of Doyle, Mark Wardlow, Josh Casey (Vice President) and Daniel Bolton (Treasurer).
"There are two main reasons that this happened," Doyle said. "That's the work of this committee and our corporate sponsors. These guys did the heavy lifting and made things happen when it didn't seem like it was possible. Our corporate sponsors were able to financially support our ideas and they took a big gamble on this. They took a chance on us, hoping it would work. Thanks to this committee, they pulled it off and I think our Chamber and community is going to be stronger as a result. We felt like this would be a do-or-die situation for the Chamber. We're still here, so I guess that means it worked?" Doyle added with a laugh.
The corporate sponsors for the event were Rafferty's/Double Dogs, Patton Funeral Home, Bank of Edmonson County, Edmonson County Tourism Commission, A Plus Family Healthcare, and Alford's Pharmacy.
Doyle credited the committee for taking care of the most difficult part of the Bash during the final two weeks before the event while he was away on a family emergency.
"Most everyone knows the medical emergency that my family faced over the last couple weeks. When I told the guys (Wardlow, Casey, and Bolton) I was going to have to step away, they didn't blink. They said they would take care of everything and they did. Not only did they have to take care of their individual responsibilities, they took care of all mine, too. I want to specifically thank Mark Wardlow, the Chamber's newest board member, for what he did throughout this, especially the last two weeks. This festival wouldn't have happened without him and the rest of the committee. Mark took the lead on it and made it happen, despite some last-second problems that actually threatened the entire festival, but again, they were resolved."
The square was jam-packed on Saturday with the car show as the headlining attraction.
"Chamber board member Mike Stoyonovich organized the car show and we had decided that if we had 50 cars to register, it would be a success. We had all our spaces occupied before the registration was even supposed to start. We registered 117 cars and counted 132 on-site," Doyle added. "The food trucks, inflatables, and the Patton Funeral Home Arts, Crafts, and Vendor Event was a huge success inside the Community Center. Afterwards, we had our A Plus Family Health Cornhole Pro-Am in the Community Center as well. Local pro Damon Dennis and his wife, Kathy, took the lead on that and everyone had a great time. The Edmonson County Tourism Commission 5K that morning was also successful at Chalybeate Park and we even tried a Kayak and Canoe Challenge on the river, sponsored by Alford's Pharmacy. The Bank of Edmonson County Miss Brownsville Beauty Pageant drew a lot of attention through our media source and the Homemakers Baby Show filled up the Community Center."
The carnival was held at ECHS and got positive reviews overall, Doyle said.
"The fireworks finale was fantastic," Doyle added. "We want to thank Chamber board member Patrick Merritt for helping organize that with our fireworks supplier. We were told that the show could be seen from all over town. I also want to thank Chamber Board member Scott Lindsey for his help by announcing at our events and providing music all day on the square."
"One of the main reasons this type of thing hasn't been done here is nobody wants to take the risk of doing it and it's been very difficult in the past to get multiple organizations to come together in order to make it happen," Doyle said. "Something like this takes city and county governments working together, local businesses stepping up, and an overall willingness to bring people together. That's exactly what happened to make this work. One of the first people to offer a hand was Brian Alexander, Superintendent of Edmonson County Schools. After that, more people began to come on board, then our sponsors, and now we can look back and see how to improve things for next year."
"We also want to send a shout out to some other businesses and organizations within our Chamber community that also made this happen that include, and please forgive me if anyone is left out--Kayaks and More, Green River Canoeing, The Edmonson County Lions Club, A.B. Webb, Edmonson County Parks and Rec, Jacob's Home Furnishings, The Edmonson County Homemakers, The Edmonson Voice, C&C Firearms and Outdoors, Scott Skaggs Photography and the Hidden Homestead, Brownsville Missionary Baptist, St. John's Thrift Store, Graves Gilbert Clinic, The Edmonson County Public Library, Edmonson County Extension Office, Lori Alexander and Madison Hollis, The Edmonson County Rescue Squad, Edmonson EMS, The City of Brownsville, Edmonson County Judge Executive's Office, The KY Highway Transportation Office District 3, WRECC, 3B Inflatables, Paula Madison, and Damon and Kathy Dennis."
Got feedback? The Chamber wants to hear from you. Please email them at firstname.lastname@example.org for your suggestions for next year's Bash.
Madison Doyle, story and photos:
The first ever Miss Brownsville Bash Beauty Pageant was held tonight at the Edmonson County High School Football Field. The pageant was sponsored by the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce and the Bank of Edmonson County, and organized by Lori Alexander and Madison Hollis.
The winners are listed below:
Miss Brownsville Overall: Mia Cris Holland of Smiths Grove.
Miss Brownsville Local Winner: Hallie Ann Cassady of Chalybeate.
Miss Teen Overall: Emma Claire Skaggs of Caneyville.
Miss Preteen Overall: Riley Bowlds of Brownsville.
Little Miss Overall: Lynna Karoline Dennison of Clarkson.
Little Miss Local Winner: Olivia Gail Logan of Bee Spring.
1st Runner Up: Abigail Philips of Chalybeate
Tiny Miss Overall: Ava Caroline Kemble of Cave City.
Tiny Miss Local Winner: Lyla Jane Massey of Chalybeate.
1st Runner-Up: Ellington Sloane McReynolds of Smiths Grove.
2nd Runner-Up: Marlee Emma Jean Martin of Windyville.
3rd Runner-Up: AvaLynn Rosamarie Scott of Grayson County.
The winners were crowned by Ava Gillette, Miss Edmonson County 2022.
Madison Doyle, story and photos:
The first ever Big Brownsville Bash Baby Show was held last night in the Edmonson County Community Center. The event was sponsored by the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce and organized by the Edmonson County Homemakers.
The winners are listed below:
Overall Girls Winner: Alice Martin, daughter of Michaela and Richard Martin of Windyville.
Overall Boys Winner: River Gray Cline, son of Wesley and Kendra Cline of Park City.
0-6 Month Girls:
Winner: Emaline Meredith, daughter of Drew and Brianna Meredith of Wingfield.
0-6 Month Boys:
Winner: Walker Stewart, son of Bradley and Elizabeth Stewart of Grassland.
1st Runner-Up: Maverick Hennion, son of Destinee and Ryan Hennion of Cedar Springs.
2nd Runner-Up: Parker Farmer, son of Sidney Farmer of Brownsville.
6-12 Month Girls:
Winner: Alice Martin, daughter of Michaela and Richard Martin of Windyville.
1st Runner-Up: Charlotte Girard, daughter of Samantha and Josh Girard of Mohawk.
2nd Runner-Up: Charlee Marie Honeycutt, daughter of Hunter Honeycutt and Jessica Scott of Cedar Springs.
6-12 Month Boys:
Winner: Jace Carson Basham, son of Angela Basham of Wingfield.
1st Runner-Up: Memphis Ray Zachery, son of Stephen and Whittney Zachery of Clarkson.
12-18 Month Girls:
Winner: Brynlyn LaShae Calvert, daughter of Erika and Justin Calvert of Grayson County.
1st Runner-Up: Annabeth Ritter, daughter of Wally and Ashley Ritter of Sweeden.
2nd Runner-Up (tied): Harper Kate Cassady, daughter of Kyle and Staffane Cassady of Chalybeate
2nd Runner-Up (tied): Kennedy Ima Spainhoward, daughter of Jeremy and Maria Spainhoward of Brownsville.
12-18 Month Boys:
Winner: River Gray Cline, son of Wesley and Kendra Cline of Park City.
1st Runner-Up: Liam Sawyer Thomas Wood, son of Michael and Rayvan Wood of Grayson County.
2nd Runner-Up: Brantley Skipworth, son of Tyler and Destiny Skipworth of Grayson County.
18-24 Month Girls:
Winner: Avie-Lynn Michelle Williams, daughter of Andy and Sabrina Williams of Lindseyville.
1st Runner-Up: Marley Raylynn Jones, daughter of Isaac and Julie Jones of Roundhill.
18-24 Month Boys:
Winner: Abel Neal Hennion, son of Ryan and Destinee Hennion of Cedar Springs.
1st Runner-Up: Connor Dick, son of Meghan and Brian Dick of Smiths Grove.
2 Year Girls:
Winner: Tilly Jo Massey, daughter of TJ and Alex Jane Massey of Chalybeate.
1st Runner-Up: Adalynn Beth Elmore, daughter of Nathan and Faith Elmore of Chalybeate.
2nd Runner-Up: Hadley Grace Minyard, daughter of Kaitlyn Meredith and Carter Minyard of Chalybeate.
Prettiest Eyes: Paisley Rich, daughter of Chris and Lindsey Rich of Chalybeate.
2 Year Boys:
Winner: Oaklee John Skagss, son of Nick and Keela Skaggs of Chalybeate.
1st Runner-Up: Archer Reed Hennion, son of Weston and Chelsae Hennion of Cedar Springs.
2nd Runner-Up: Johnathan Kane Kemble, son of Courtney and Josh Kemble of Cave City.
Best Personality: Rylan Hazelwood, son of Steven and Kristin Hazelwood of Brownsville.
3 Year Girls:
Winner: Laney Jade Basham, daughter of Angela Basham of Bowling Green.
1st Runner-Up: Avery Hadley, daughter of Jenna and Dustin Hadley of Chalybeate.
2nd Runner-Up: Isabella Dick, daughter of Meghan and Brian Dick of Smiths Grove.
Best Personality: Raelynn Michelle Wood, daughter of Michael and Rayvan Wood of Grayson County.
The main event for Friday will be the Big Brownsville Bash Beauty Pageant, presented by Bank of Edmonson County, where young ladies will compete for the first-ever Miss Brownsville title.
The event will be held at the ECHS football field with registration starting at 4pm and show time beginning at 6PM.
Madison Doyle, story:
The Big Brownsville Bash is scheduled to start this Thursday and is planned to go through Saturday night in Brownsville and the surrounding area.
The county's newest festival, organized by the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce is planned to become an annual event and will feature the following events and attractions:
Parking for the carnival will be at Houchin Ferry Road at the side of Edmonson County High School. Activities will also be held at the Edmonson County Public Library on Thursday and Friday, which include a Farmer's Market and Dunk Tank, sponsored by ECHS Soccer. 4-H Rally Days will be held inside the Library for 4-H members.
Saturday will see a busy day on the square with all sorts of activities and events for all ages with two different sessions of the carnival: one will begin at noon on Saturday until 4pm, then an evening session from 5pm to 11pm. Any carnival armbands purchased for the Saturday day session will expire at 4pm. You'll need a new armband if you also want unlimited rides on Saturday night.
The Chamber has partnered with corporate sponsors Rafferty's, Patton Funeral Home, Bank of Edmonson County, A Plus Family Healthcare, Edmonson County Tourism, and Alford's Pharmacy to make the event possible.
"Our Chamber Board has been working non-stop since mid-March to organize this festival," said Chamber Board President Darren Doyle. "The positive feedback we've received from our Chamber members and our local community has been overwhelming and we're certain we're going to see a huge draw at what we feel can be something great here for years to come."
All event flyers and information can be found on the Chamber Facebook Page or at EdmonsonChamber.com.