Ethics hearing for former lawmaker postponed
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The Legislative Ethics Commission has postponed a hearing that had been set for Thursday in the case of a former lawmaker accused of sexually harassing Capitol staffers.
Former state Rep. John Arnold of Sturgis has been rescheduled to appear before the ethics panel on Feb. 25.
Commission Chairman George Troutman said in a written order last week that the delay will allow time for Arnold to undergo a neurological exam that could help determine whether he's competent to participate in his defense and whether he's competent to testify.
Arnold resigned from the Legislature in September after the sexual harassment allegations were made public. Legislative staffers Yolanda Costner and Cassaundra Cooper say Arnold had touched them inappropriately and made vulgar comments. A third woman also has filed a complaint.
Auditor recommends cybersecurity improvements
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - State Auditor Adam Edelen is recommending improvements to cybersecurity at the Kentucky Retirement Systems.
Edelen released findings from an annual review on Wednesday and made several recommendations for fiscal improvements, including more closely monitoring contracts with outside companies.
But one of the more eye-catching recommendations involved weaknesses in cybersecurity.
In particular, Edelen said his staff discovered that former Kentucky Retirement Systems employees still had access to software systems containing sensitive and confidential information.
The review also found accounting weaknesses and inadequate segregation of duties among key financial staffers.
GANDER CRASH ANNIVERSARY
Services planned to remember Gander crash victims
FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. (AP) - Soldiers and members of the public will hold memorial services Thursday in several locations for the 248 Fort Campbell soldiers killed 28 years ago in a plane crash in Canada.
The soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division's 2nd Brigade Combat Team were on their way back to Fort Campbell from a six-month tour as part of a peacekeeping mission in Sinai, Egypt. Arrow Air Flight 1285 crashed a short distance from Gander International Airport in Newfoundland on Dec. 12, 1985, also killing eight crew members. Canada officials determined the crash was caused by icing.
The current Sinai multinational force commander, Col. Thomas O'Steen, said in a news release from Fort Campbell that a memorial will be held in Egypt. Fort Campbell is holding a ceremony at 10:30 a.m. CST, and the city of Hopkinsville will have a service at 2 p.m.
Bell clerk, deputies charged by grand jury
PINEVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Bell County Clerk Rebecca Blevins and two deputy clerks have been indicted in a case involving vehicle registrations.
Attorney General Jack Conway's office said a Bell County grand jury charged the 45-year-old Blevins with abuse of public trust and second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument.
The grand jury Wednesday also indicted 23-year-old Kayla Carnes and 40-year-old Connie Watkins, charging them with second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument.
All pleaded not guilty after being arrested last month, and a judge had dismissed some charges.
Conway's office said 55-year-old Flora Ferrell, a deputy clerk who was also arrested last month as a result of the investigation, was not indicted. The charge against her also was previously dismissed.
Democrats ask for recanvass in House race
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Democrats are seeking a recanvass in a western Kentucky legislative race in which a Republican has already claimed victory.
Republican Suzanne Miles of Owensboro had 3,568 votes, narrowly besting Morganfield Democrat Kim Humphrey's 3,436 votes in western Kentucky's 7th District.
Humphrey requested the recanvass.
The winner of the race replaces Democratic state Rep. John Arnold of Sturgis who resigned in September after being accused of sexually harassing legislative staffers at the Capitol.
Republicans, who have been pushing hard to win majority control of the House, see the race as important because it would, depending on the outcome of the recanvass, move them a seat closer to their goal.
Before Tuesday's election, Democrats held a 54-45 majority in the House.
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