Wednesday July 18, 2018
News Topics

The two leaders who most recently guided the Kentucky State Fair Board agree its future is in good hands with new President and CEO David Beck.

Beck officially began his new role at Kentucky Venues on July 1.

Secretary of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, Don Parkinson, and Chairman of the Kentucky State Fair Board, Dr. Mark Lynn, who recently served separate terms as interim CEO at Kentucky Venues, predict David Beck will be the most consequential leader in the organization’s history.

“David successfully led a large organization, involved in major state and national legislative regulatory issues, affecting agriculture and rural Kentucky,” said Secretary Parkinson. “He brings a wealth of business expertise to the sixth largest convention operation in the nation.”

Kentucky Venues operates the Kentucky Exposition Center (KEC), the Kentucky International Convention Center (KICC) and produces the Kentucky State Fair, National Farm Machinery Show and North American International Livestock Exposition.

“The blend of leadership capability, knowledge of Kentucky and ability to unite diverse industries set David apart in his role as CEO,” said Dr. Lynn.

Beck sees tremendous opportunities at Kentucky Venues. Beck will preside over grand reopening of KICC on August 6. The downtown Louisville convention center has been closed for 24 months to allow $207 million worth of building renovations to be completed.

Beck says the 540 acre complex at the Kentucky Exposition Center is an ideal location for additional private development such as hotels and entertainment venues.

“KEC sits at the corner of Interstates 65 and 264. That is some of the most valuable property in Kentucky. We are asking private companies to give us ideas on how we can collaborate with them to enhance that area for our citizens and guests to our state. I’m excited about developing something special there.”

Beck said other priorities in his new job include bringing together the urban and rural communities and forming strategic partnerships across the state.

“I want Kentucky Venues to serve as an example of how government entities can operate effectively and efficiently,” said Beck.

Additionally, Beck is reimagining facility use at both properties. Beck plans to increase revenue through new business events and agriculture shows.

“I not only want to preserve the rich tradition of our properties but also enhance it for future Kentuckians and guests,” said Beck.

After 41 years with Kentucky Farm Bureau (KFB), Beck brings to Kentucky Venues experience in agribusiness, government affairs, and executive management. Prior to his retirement at KFB, he served as the company’s Executive Vice President. A five-member search committee was appointed in January by Kentucky State Fair Board Chairman Dr. Mark Lynn to review applications for the president/CEO position that had been vacant since September 2017.

Visit for more information about spaces and events at Kentucky Venues.

Due to the recent fire at The Kentucky Center, Dan & Phil World Tour 2018: Interactive Introverts, previously scheduled for Whitney Hall, has been moved to Iroquois Amphitheater. The event will still be held on August 2nd at 8 pm.

Ticket holders were carefully reassigned into comparable reserved seating at Iroquois Amphitheater. The Kentucky Center box office is sending new tickets to those patrons per their original delivery method. Anyone who purchased tickets in-person will receive their new tickets by mail.

The Kentucky Center remains the OFFICIAL ticket service for this event and open seats for the event at Iroquois Amphitheater are now on sale. Tickets are available online and by phone (584-7777).

Metro Animal ServicesThe Louisville Metro Animal Services Animal Care Facility is operating near maximum capacity so LMAS has waived adoption fees for all adoptable pets  the month of July, to make sure there is room for incoming stray animals.

“We put an end to euthanizing animals because there wasn’t enough space for them in 2017.” said Ozzy Gibson, LMAS Shelter Director.  “But that’s a real possibility the longer the shelter operates near, or at max capacity.”

The city’s only open intake shelter took in more than 7,500 homeless pets last year, and for the first time ever no animals were euthanized to make room for incoming stray animals.

“We’re asking the public to help us remain a shelter that doesn’t euthanize simply because it’s out of room by adopting one of our homeless cats or dogs,” said Gibson.

The waived adoption fees will be paid for by the non-profit, Friends of Metro Animal Services (FOMAS) and the Pay It Forward Program, a donation based initiative launched in 2017.

Adoption fees are waived, but not the adoption process. Potential adopters must complete an application and be approved.

All adoptable shelter pets are spayed/neutered, microchipped and up-to-date on vaccinations. Each adoption also includes a 1-year, renewable pet license, which is required by law for Jefferson County pet owners.

Animal House Adoption Center (3516 Newburg rd.) is open Tuesday-Sunday 12-6pm and Fridays until 7pm.

The shelter (3705 Manslick rd.) is open Monday-Friday 12-6pm and Saturdays 11-2pm.

FOMAS is accepting donation to keep the Pay It Forward Program going. Those who cannot adopt can make a donation at Animal House, the shelter or online.

To make a donation to FOMAS, click here.

The 2018 Kentucky Legislature passed a three-foot bicycle passing law sponsored by Rep. Jerry Miller that will take effect July 14, 2018.

The law requires vehicles passing a bicycle to use the adjacent lane if available. If an adjacent lane is not available, then the passing vehicle should pass to the left at a distance not less than three feet between the vehicle and the bicycle.  If the bicycle is in a bicycle lane, the passing vehicle should still be at least three feet from the bicycle.

Distance is measured from the outmost portion of the vehicle to the outmost portion of the bicycle. A pickup truck with wide view mirrors would require a space of three feet from the mirrors to the end of the bicycle handlebar.

If the roadway, the distance from the edge of the pavement to the other side of the pavement, is too narrow to give three feet clearance, then the passing vehicle should use reasonable caution. Typically this will occur on one-lane roads less than 10 to 12 feet wide.

The new law also allows passing vehicles to legally cross a double yellow line to pass a bicycle – if there is enough sight distance to safely pass, considering the slower speed of the bicycle and greater visibility around the bicycle.

Thirty-four states have similar safe passing laws to use the adjacent lane or give three feet or more.

Like all states, Kentucky law also requires cyclists to follow the basic rules of the road.  Like any operator of a vehicle, a bicyclist must ride with traffic, obey traffic laws and stop at stop signs and red lights.

When following the rules of the road, a cyclist has the same right-of-way as any car, truck or bus driver.

However, state law requires a bicycle to operate as near to the right side of the roadway as practicable. While the word “practicable” is undefined, there are many exceptions cited when it would be unreasonable or unsafe to ride on the right side of the lane – for example, to avoid parked cars, surface hazards, or moving vehicles.

Cyclists are also permitted to ride two abreast, meaning side-by-side, in the same lane.

Cyclists must also use a white light on the front of the bike and a red reflector or red light in the rear between sunset and sunrise or whenever the weather makes lights necessary.

Laws related to bicycles are in Kentucky Administrative Regulations, KAR 14:020. The three foot law is at KRS 189.300 amended.

For more information on Kentucky bicycle laws, visit , contact Troy Hearn, Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, (502) 782-5060,,  the  Kentucky Office of Highway Safety, Phone: (502) 564-1438, or Dixie Moore,

The U.S. Water Alliance on Tuesday named Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer the 2018 winner of the U.S. Water Prize for Outstanding Public Official, citing his commitment to water workforce development.

The U.S. Water Alliance awards Water Prizes each year in six categories to celebrate outstanding achievement in the advancement of sustainable, integrated, and inclusive solutions to our nation’s water challenges. It is the preeminent national recognition program for exemplary efforts to secure a sustainable water future for all.​

“I’m honored to accept this on behalf of Louisville and all our partners helping us innovate and care for one of our most important resources,” Mayor Fischer said.

Fischer received the prize in Minneapolis, Minn. during the One Water Summit, an annual event that brings together 875 water leaders from across the country. Community groups, water utilities, private sector companies, environmental and agricultural groups and others come to One Water Summit to participate in discussion and problem solving around our nation’s most pressing water problems.

The Alliance said Fischer had “contributed to substantial growth and advancement in the water sector both locally and nationally. He has championed multiple water-related initiatives, including the One Water Initiative, 100 Resilient Cities, Water System Regionalization, and the Louisville MSD Critical Repair and Re-investment Plan. Through these innovative initiatives, Mayor Fischer has improved customer service, identified revenue opportunities, and realized cost savings for the Louisville community. Mayor Fischer’s work illustrates his understanding that investment in our aging water, wastewater, and flood protection systems are part of the formula that will lead to a resilient Louisville.”

The One Water Initiative, designed to improve customer service and realize cost savings through the sharing of services among Louisville MSD and Louisville Water Company, has produced benefits, savings and revenue of nearly $12 million.

As part of 100 Resilient Cities, Louisville joined an initiative dedicated to helping cities around the world become more resilient to challenges including aging infrastructure and risks due to climate change. Mayor Fischer also supported Louisville MSD’s Critical Repair and Re-investment Plan that includes upgrading Louisville’s flood protection systems and addressing aging infrastructure county-wide.

For more information about the U.S. Water Alliance, visit

The goal of “Clearing The Air” is to give the public an inside look at the APCD, everything from the science of air pollution to the laws and regulations that protect our health from harmful air.

“We’re excited to share the District’s work in a setting that will encourage dialogue and learning,” said Michelle King, APCD Director of Program Planning. “We can learn more about our community’s questions and concerns, while providing an opportunity for person-to-person conversations with individuals who want to know more about Louisville’s air quality.”

Although the smoggy, polluted skies of the 1970s are a distant memory, Louisville still must work to meet federal air quality standards. As a major industrial and logistics hub located in a heavily populated river valley, Louisville is challenged to control air pollution while maintaining a robust local economy.

“Air quality is a very important topic in Louisville that affects every community,” said APCD Environmental Coordinator Torend Collins, who is overseeing the workshop series. “These workshops are a great way to learn more about APCD and how we, as members of the community, can continue to improve Louisville’s air.”

“Clearing The Air” will consist of seven free workshops, all to be held at the Louisville Free Public Library, 301 York St.

• July 16: APCD 101/Louisville’s Air Quality
• July 30: Air Quality & Health/Reducing My Pollution Impact
• Aug. 13: Odors: Reporting and Responding
• Aug. 27: The APCD Regulatory Process
• Sept. 10: How We Monitor Air Quality
• Sept. 22: Technical Workshop *
• Sept. 24: The STAR Program/Environmental Justice

The workshops will be 5:30-7 p.m., and they are free and open to the public.

(*Exception: The Technical Workshop will be 10 a.m.-2 p.m.)

“Working with our partners in the community and the Environmental Protection Agency, we hope to provide information and training to further empower residents with resources that will help improve our health and our understanding of the successes and challenges that make up the story of Louisville’s air – past, present, and future,” King said.

For updates, go to or call (502) 574-6000.

Metro Animal ServicesMayor Greg Fischer today joined Metro Animal Services and Friends of Metro Animal Services (FOMAS) for the groundbreaking of a state-of-the-art animal care complex located at 3516 Newburg Road, which will replace the outdated shelter built in 1966.

“This modern, full-service animal shelter will help us provide the optimal care that our animals deserve,” Mayor Fischer said. “I’m pleased to see yet another sign of the tremendous progress we’re making as a city and another reflection of our core value of compassion.”

The 33,000-square-foot facility can house up to 235 animals. The nearly $11.5 million facility will include a Community Spay and Neuter clinic that will operate independently from the shelter, offering low-cost vaccinations and microchipping.

A modern veterinary wing that meets industry standards will include the shelter’s first X-ray machine and four surgery tables. The new facility also includes space specifically for small mammals.

The benefits of a new shelter are not limited to the building: It will allow LMAS to increase enrichment opportunities for shelter pets waiting to be adopted. The campus features six play yards compared to just one at the current shelter, as well as a half-mile walking track.

Grooming and photo rooms will ensure homeless shelter pets look their best for potential adopters viewing their online profiles.

“We’re not just building an animal shelter for today, we’re ensuring LMAS can meet the needs of Louisville’s homeless pet population in the future,” said Ozzy Gibson, director of LMAS. “This will be a shelter that citizens can be proud to support.”

Mayor Fischer said it was part of improvements and innovations at Animal Services, including programs such as the Pay It Forward free adoptions, that have helped increase the agency’s live release rate for both dogs and cats to over 90 percent, earning it “No Kill” status for time or space.

The new animal care facility, located next to Animal House Adoption Center which was built in 2009, is expected to be complete by late summer 2019.