Thursday March 22, 2018
News Topics

Gov. Matt Bevin congratulated Kings Royal Biotech Inc. (KRB), a manufacturer of cannabidiol isolate, for breaking ground on its $30 million-plus facility, a project expected to create 140 full-time jobs in the West Kentucky city of Bardwell.

“Ag-tech businesses are increasingly recognizing the many benefits of manufacturing hemp-related products in Kentucky,” Gov. Bevin said. “We are grateful for the jobs and investment that Kings Royal Biotech brings and for the company’s efforts to build lasting relationships with West Kentucky farmers. We look forward to seeing our state become a global leader in this rapidly growing industry. Congratulations to KRB on today’s announcement and to the Carlisle County community on this exciting new opportunity.”

KRB will build its 75,000-square-foot building on nearly nine acres in Carlisle County. The facility will use state-of-the-art methods to extract, refine and re-crystallize cannabidiol (CBD) from industrial hemp and is believed to be the largest operation of its kind in the nation. With the issuance of an industrial hemp research pilot program processor license by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, KRB plans to start processing hemp in late 2018 and ramp up to full capacity by summer 2019.

“Industrial hemp is the next big thing in Kentucky,” said Keith Taylor, chief operating officer at KRB. “The bourbon industry is synonymous with the state, and it is our goal to reach that level of success, where any time someone thinks of hemp-related products, they think of Kentucky.”

KRB, incorporated in Kentucky in 2017, partnered with a China-based company specializing in industrial hemp-related products to establish the Bardwell operation. KRB licensed its partner’s patented extraction and crystallization process in West Kentucky. CBD isolate and full spectrum oil will then be sold in commercial quantities throughout the US and worldwide. People use CBD isolate for numerous health and wellness purposes.

Taylor noted Kentucky’s ideal conditions for the growth of hemp as a major influence in its decision to locate in the state, and the company has hired J.T. Workman IV, of Carlisle County, as its growing manager. Workman assisted the company to secure an agreement with local farmers to plant and harvest more than 1,000 acres of hemp.

KRB also has partnered with Andrea Schiavi of Lexington-based Schiavi Seeds LLC to provide hemp seeds certified through the Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies (AOSCA). Schiavi Seeds received recognition in fall 2017 for becoming the first company since the 1930s to produce certified hemp seeds in the commonwealth.

“Kentucky’s nationally-renowned industrial hemp research pilot program continues to grow,” said Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles. “The number of processors is increasing, creating new market opportunities for our farmers and jobs for Kentuckians across the commonwealth. I’d like to thank Governor Bevin and the Cabinet for Economic Development for continuing to attract new and exciting businesses to Kentucky.”

Sen. Danny Carroll, of Paducah, expressed enthusiasm for the project.

“I’d like to congratulate and welcome Kings Royal Biotech to Carlisle County as it builds a $30 million facility that will create 140 jobs in Senate District 2,” Sen. Carroll said. “As a manufacturer of CBD, Kings Royal Biotech uses state-of-the-art methods that will help the commonwealth lead the nation in this fast-growing industry. I look forward to the completion of this project and the national distribution of its Kentucky products.”

Rep. Steven Rudy, of Paducah, welcomed the company to west Kentucky.

“This facility will be a tremendous asset for the Carlisle County region,” Rep. Rudy said. “Hemp production is a growing industry and the company will provide more than 100 great jobs in Kentucky. We welcome Kings Royal Biotech to the state.”

Carlisle County Judge-Executive Greg Terry said the project shines a light on the community’s ability to support new business.

“I am very proud of the work that the Carlisle County Industrial Development Board has done to show what a great place Carlisle County would be for this new CBD isolate facility,” Judge-Executive Terry said. “I look forward to working with Kings Royal Biotech during this process.”

KRB can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives. In fiscal 2017, the Kentucky Skills Network provided training for more than 120,000 Kentuckians and 5,700 companies from a variety of industry sectors.

A detailed community profile for Carlisle County can be viewed at

Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion on Facebook or follow on Twitter. Watch the Cabinet’s “This is My Kentucky” video on YouTube.

Louisville Metro and Airbnb announced today the finalization of an agreement that will allow the company to collect and remit taxes on behalf of its hosts in Louisville and Jefferson County. Effective April 1, Airbnb will automatically collect and remit the Louisville Transient Room Tax (8.5%) for taxable bookings. The agreement allows Louisville to fully benefit from people visiting and staying longer through home sharing.

Collecting and remitting hotel taxes can be complicated, as the rules were designed for traditional hospitality providers and large hotel corporations with teams of lawyers and accountants.

That’s why Airbnb has begun partnering with governments throughout the world to collect and remit taxes, making the process seamless and easy for hosts to pay their fair share while contributing new revenue for local governments. These agreements are particularly impactful for a city like Louisville, where some homeowners may only be hosting visitors during a handful of large events such as the Kentucky Derby, and therefore are less likely to be aware of the applicable taxes associated with short-term rentals.

“I am delighted to see that the city has settled on an agreement with Airbnb. We have leisure and convention travelers requesting the option of an Airbnb. We have a growing number of Airbnb Hosts in Louisville – this will put them on the same playing field as our other accommodations in paying the transient room tax,” said Karen Williams, President & CEO of the Louisville Convention Bureau.

“We are always looking for opportunities to better serve taxpayers,” said Louisville Metro Revenue Commission Director Angela Dunn. “This agreement advances that goal by streamlining the local tax process for hosts.”

This marks Airbnb’s third tax agreement in Kentucky. In September 2017, the company announced a statewide tax agreement with the Kentucky Department of Revenue that authorized the company to collect and remit the state sales tax on all Kentucky Airbnb bookings (including in Louisville Metro). And earlier this year, Airbnb and Lexington announced an agreement authorizing Airbnb to collect and remit Lexington’s local room tax.

“We believe this agreement will unlock significant new revenue for Louisville Convention Bureau moving forward, and we’re so thrilled to have finalized it well prior to the Derby,” said Laura Spanjian, policy director for Airbnb. “With clear, fair rules to regulate home sharing and now a tax agreement to bring in new revenue, Louisville has emerged as a national model for how cities can capitalize from the sharing economy.”

The agreement comes at a time of dynamic home sharing growth in the Greater Louisville area. In 2017, Louisville-area Airbnb hosts earned $10 million in supplemental income while welcoming over 78,000 guest arrivals to the city.

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Dixie Highway is experiencing a renovation and renaissance as work continues on updating this important transportation corridor in Metro Louisville.

As part of that movement forward, this Saturday, more than 60 businesses will gather at the Discover Dixie Expo to showcase everything from education, financial services, healthcare and fitness to home improvement, computer and technical needs.

“The Southwest has many wonderful businesses serving our Dixie Highway community. The Discover Dixie Expo is a great way to bring together our local businesses under one roof.  Please come out to meet and support our Dixie Area Businesses!” Councilwoman Cindi Fowler (D-14).

The Dixie Area Business Association created the Expo, to highlight the benefits of the Dixie Highway Corridor, as well as other businesses in the marketplace. It is a great way to showcase these companies

“Southwest Louisville’s economy is built upon honest, reputable local businesses that serve our entire city. The Discover Dixie Expo is a showcase of these great entrepreneurs,” says Councilman David Yates (D-25). “I hope you will join me in keeping our dollars local by coming out and learning what each of these businesses can do for you!”

“Our Southwest Metro Council Team will be part of the DABA Expo to bring local government to the business community at this special event.,” says Councilwoman Vicki Aubrey Welch (D-13). “I look forward to learning more about the many businesses that attend.”

Discover Dixie Expo is set for this Saturday, March 10th at Valley High School, 10200 Dixie Highway starting at 10:00am. Admission is free with a can good (non expired) with all going to Southwest Community Ministries.


Shop Local, Buy Local, Be Local, Discover the Power of Dixie!

  • JenCare Senior Medical Center
  • L&N Federal Credit Union
  • Leanhart Plumbing, Inc.
  • Ink Publishing & Design
  • Senior Helpers
  • Southwest YMCA
  • Valley High School
  • Metro Council District 12
  • Metro Council District 13
  • Metro Council District 14
  • Metro Council District 25
  • Signarama
  • CareSource
  • Newcomer Funeral Home
  • LG&E
  • 20/20 Eye Care
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Park Community Credit Union
  • Humana
  • Michael Walker Advertising
  • Stephenson Nursery & Garden Center
  • Cardinal Chiropractic Center
  • Beacon Community Credit Union
  • Harbor House of Louisville
  • Southwest Community Ministries
  • Owen Funeral Home
  • Karing Kleaners
  • Signature
  • Ken Thieneman Builder
  • LMPD Advisory Board
  • Advantage Funeral Home
  • Jefferson County Federal Credit Union
  • Altitude Trampoline Park
  • Berkshire Hathaway
  • Cervices, LLC
  • BNI Alliance for Business
  • Waky RadioGeorgetown Manor
  • The Riverside Farnsley Moreman
  • Heartsong Memory Care
  • Timmy’s Auto Wash
  • Edward Jones
  • G&S General Contracting LLC
  • Triology
  • SW Festival
  • Sun Vally Community Center
  • Maryhurst

Photo: KFC Yum! Center

The KFC Yum! Center is expanding its Thunder festivities with an event created specifically to enable members of the Louisville business community to connect, expand their professional network and discuss opportunities for collaboration. The event will take place in the arena’s Woodford Reserve Lounge, which overlooks the Ohio River and provides premium viewing opportunities for the Thunder Over Louisville fireworks and air shows on Saturday, April 21, 2018.

The all-day event is presented by KFC Yum! Center in partnership with Greater Louisville Inc., Louisville Business First and Leadership Louisville.

Individual tickets are $160, discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. Admission includes:

  • Access to KFC Yum! Center Woodford Reserve Lounge
  • Networking opportunities
  • 2-3 business oriented speaking sessions
  • Evening meal + 2 drink tickets
  • Access to private restrooms
  • DJ and live music

Louisville businessman and philanthropist Dr. Mark Lynn, owner of Visionworks, will speak at the event. Lynn is the current Chairman of the Kentucky State Fair Board, is active on the University of Louisville Foundation and Finance Committee and is a Trustee for Sacred Heart Schools.  He and his family believe in giving back through involvement and development of the communities they serve. Additional speakers will be announced at a later date.

For more information and to order tickets, please visit

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Councilman Brandon Coan (D-8) has proposed the creation of a business improvement district along the Bardstown Road/Baxter Avenue corridor and announced a series of public meetings to discuss the plan with property owners and the public.

“If you are familiar with the Louisville Downtown Management District – the dedicated team of service professionals working seven days a week to beautify and keep downtown clean – then you can imagine what the Highlands Management District (HMD) might look like,” said Coan. “In addition, the proposed HMD would also assist LMPD, PARC and social service providers working along the corridor, from Broadway to the Douglass Loop.”

Management districts are funded by special assessments against properties located within service area boundaries, and they are managed by a board comprised primarily of district property owners. The proposed Highlands Management District special assessment is $0.1745 per $100.

The public meetings will discuss the management district proposal in greater detail, including how the petition process works, the scope of services to be provided, budget information and more. The meetings will be held at the following times and locations:

  • Monday, March 26, 1 pm, at HopCat
  • Thursday, March 29, 6 pm, at the Highlands-Shelby Park Library (inside the Mid City Mall)
  • Monday, April 2, 6 pm, at the Douglass Community Center Gymnasium

Coan’s proposal is the result of more than six months of studies, reports and recommendations by an exploratory committee comprised of property owners and other stakeholders in the corridor, in consultation with the Louisville Downtown Partnership. If the proposal is accepted the Highlands Management District is scheduled to begin service in January 2019.

For more information about the proposed Highlands Management District, contact Councilman Coan’s office at 574-1108 or visit for more information.

This month, people who travel Dixie Highway had the chance to see detailed plans for the $35 million New Dixie Highway Project and offer their feedback.

Dozens attended an open house at Shively Community Center on Feb. 15, 2018, to talk with project leaders about construction plans, bus design, ramp improvements and more. In addition to the open house, project leaders continue to gather input with an online feedback form.

New Dixie Highway Project is designed to create transportation and safety improvements along the busy roadway. The project will concentrate on three major areas of improvement:

  • Roadway safety and design improvements, including raised medians and left-hand-only turn lanes, along the most congested and dangerous section (Crums Lane to Greenwood Road). Project Map (PDF)
  • The region’s first bus rapid transit route, with eight priority buses and three dozen highly visible stations that will improve travel times for both transit riders and motorists. Bus Route Details (PDF)
  • A new Intelligent Transportation System that will improve and coordinate traffic signal timing along the entire corridor.

Construction on the project began in December, and is expected to conclude in December 2019. It’s the first major project under Mayor Greg Fischer’s MOVE Louisville initiative, which seeks to modernize and improve transportation across the metro area. The project is fueled by a combination of federal, state and local funds.

For more information:

The New Dixie Highway Website

Open House Handouts and Documents

Feedback Form

Mayor Greg Fischer is taking part in a 10-day trip to India, organized by the international Strong Cities Network (SCN), that will include a visit with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

As part of the trip, funded by the U.S. Embassy in India, Mayor Fischer and Tom Tait, Mayor of Anaheim, Calif., will meet with government, business, media and thought leaders to discuss approaches to making cities safer and communities stronger amid the rise in violent extremist groups around the globe.

Mayor Fischer also will be speaking to members of India’s business community at the Indian Merchant Chamber of Commerce, and industry, interfaith and community leaders at various stops throughout the trip. He’ll also meet with state and city officials, including the mayor of Mumbai Vishwanath Mahadeshwar, and discuss Louisville’s story in interviews with India’s media.

“Visits like this are great opportunities to promote our city,” Mayor Fischer said. “Our focus on compassion is something that resonates worldwide and is so relevant in today’s world. And I always welcome to the chance to tell our city’s story to potential investors and business interests that may be looking to expand in the U.S.”

India’s population is 1.3 billion, and its GDP is about $2.3 trillion.

SCN Manager Rebecca Skellett said the two mayors were chosen for the trip because of their focus on compassion, which has been championed by the Dalai Lama. Anaheim’s City of Kindness initiative parallels Louisville Compassionate City efforts.

“Mayor Fischer and Mayor Tait are both driving forward innovative practices to build social cohesion with city-wide Charters for Compassion and Kindness, which offer tremendous value to residents and businesses alike,” Skellett said. “This is why we’re delighted to be taking these two U.S. Mayors to Delhi, Mumbai and Dharamsala — to share their journeys, inspire Indian cities and policy makers, and learn more about how India’s diverse range of communities live together side by side.”

Mayor Tait said, “As a city, we must always respond to daily needs for public safety and community services. But kindness is our long game. It has the potential for positive change over generations. While cities across the world may face different issues, the impact of kindness is the same. We are honored that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has embraced what we are doing in Anaheim. His words to us sum it up perfectly: ‘Creating cultures of kindness and compassion throughout the world is the key to achieving world peace.’”

Launched by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue at the United Nations in September 2015, SCN “is the first ever global network of mayors, municipal-level policy makers and practitioners united in building social cohesion and community resilience to counter violent extremism in all its forms,” according to its website.

SCN membership is diverse, including large megacities like London and Mumbai, to smaller municipalities such as Kristiansand and Tripoli.  What unites SCN members is their desire to share their experiences, learn from others and build community resilience against the divisive ideologies of hate, division and violence in all its forms.

“The network catalyzes, inspires and multiplies community-centric approaches and action to counter violent extremism through peer learning and expert training including city exchanges, annual summits, regional workshops and providing consultancy to cities,” the website said.

Mayor Fischer, who leaves for India Tuesday afternoon, said he’s pleased to share Louisville’s successes in compassion, community building and economic growth, and to learn best practices from others while visiting India.