Thursday March 22, 2018
News Topics

Photo: Kentucky Department Fish and Wildlife

The landscape awakens almost spontaneously from its winter slumber. Winter flocks break up into smaller groups. Innumerable turkey calls and lifelike decoys reappear at sporting goods retailers.

Turkey hunters interpret these occurrences as signs that it will not be long before they are easing into their spots before dawn, filled with anticipation.

In Kentucky, hunters still have ample time to scout and develop a game plan to increase their odds of success in the upcoming spring turkey season. This year, Kentucky’s youth-only season is the weekend of April 7-8. The start of the 23-day general statewide season follows on April 14. It ends May 6.

“Start at the computer then get out in the field to find birds,” said Zak Danks, wild turkey program coordinator with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.  “Know some different approaches you might take and where you can move based on gobbling you hear once the season starts.  Think about some good set-up spots or places to put your decoys, or vantage points to see birds.”

Virtual scouting can save precious time for hunters looking to hunt public land. Topographic maps and satellite views may reveal access points, existing trails, open fields, wooded areas, elevation changes and creeks or fences where approaching gobblers could hang up. Kentucky offers dozens of wildlife management areas and other lands open for public use. As a reminder, turkey calling is not allowed from March 1 until the opening of the youth-only season, and from the close of that season until the opening of the statewide season. Hunters may still use an owl, crow or other calls to locate turkeys while scouting.

It is always a good practice before the season to shoot your shotgun at a paper turkey head target using different brands of turkey loads. By patterning a shotgun ahead of time, the hunter knows the shotgun will shoot where it is aimed and deliver an acceptable number of pellets to the turkey’s vital area (head and neck).

“One thing I’ve learned over the past several years is just how good the hunting can be later in the season,” Danks said. “Last year, in particular, I had hunters contacting me well after the season ended saying they were still hearing turkeys gobble. So don’t get discouraged if you don’t have success early on. There’s still time to find turkeys throughout the season.”

In Kentucky, the spring hunting seasons are timed to give gobblers enough time to breed hens before subjecting the birds to hunting pressure. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife monitors turkey reproduction on a statewide scale through annual summer brood surveys.

Weather during the nesting period in May and June influences reproductive success. Heavy rains in Kentucky and surrounding states during that timeframe last year affected nesting success, which reflected in a statewide average of 1.2 pounds per hen.  A figure of 2.0 or higher is optimal. Hunters should expect to encounter fewer of the more easily fooled jakes as a result this season.

Kentucky annually ranks first or second among surrounding states in the number of turkeys taken per square mile.

Hunters took a record number of birds during the 2010 spring season and have averaged more than 31,000 birds over the seven seasons since.

Last spring, hunters reported taking 33,061 birds, which represents a 6 percent increase over the previous year and the third highest total on record. Muhlenberg County led all counties with hunters reporting 681 birds taken there. Looking at it differently, Pendleton County led the state with 1.76 birds harvested per square mile.

The majority of counties are showing a stable to increasing harvest trend over the past decade. Some counties are exhibiting lower harvest totals. In response, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife is expanding efforts to monitor the turkey population and reproduction. Feedback from hunters will play an important role.

A new spring hunting log and post-season survey will soon be available on the department’s website at On the homepage, type “Spring Turkey Hunting” into the search box. The log serves to collect information about a hunter’s daily hunting effort, number of turkeys seen, heard and harvested, observations about weather and other species observed. The post-season survey will include questions about spring hunting experiences.

“Our harvest totals tell us that we’re still in a pretty good situation on a statewide level,” Danks said. “We are hearing from people who tell us they’re not seeing as many turkeys as they had in the past. Most of that is from counties that have shown a decrease in harvest. What’s the reason? It’s difficult to determine on a statewide scale when all we’ve had to go on is harvest. We need information on hunter effort on a county level.

“The information gained from these hunter surveys and logs should help us track trends across the state.”

Hunters are allowed a limit of two bearded birds during the spring season, but no more than one bearded bird may be taken in a day.

The 2018 Kentucky Spring Hunting Guide provides information about current regulations, licenses and permits, legal equipment, safety tips and more. Find it online at or wherever licenses are sold.

Hunters also will have an opportunity to have their questions about spring turkey season answered during a special “Kentucky Afield” TV call-in show scheduled Saturday, March 24. The live one-hour show will air at 8 p.m. Eastern/7 p.m. Central on Kentucky Educational Television (KET). Joining host Chad Miles for the show will be Danks and pioneering turkey hunter Harold Knight.

Photo: Cabinet for Health and Family Services

A new tool launched by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ (CHFS) KASPER program–Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting – allows healthcare providers to gauge how their prescribing patterns compare with their peers.  The Prescriber Report Card feature is the latest enhancement to the nationally recognized prescription drug monitoring program.

“The new KASPER Prescriber Report Card is intended to increase the usefulness of KASPER as a tool for our healthcare providers to improve patient treatment and outcomes,” said CHFS Acting Secretary Scott Brinkman.  “We are very pleased with the initial response and welcome additional prescriber suggestions on the Prescriber Report Card and other ways we can make KASPER a more effective tool to help address the opioid epidemic.”

Data from the controlled substance prescribing tool can be used to compare prescribing patterns with other prescribers in a respective specialty area as well as identify the number of patients who may be at higher risk of a problem due to inappropriate controlled substance usage or potential interactions among controlled substances.

KASPER can also be used as a licensure and enforcement tool. Prescriber professional licensure boards may obtain copies of prescriber report cards to support their licensee reviews.

“The Board has looked at the KASPER Prescriber Report Card and could not be more excited about its availability to physicians and other prescribers in Kentucky,” said Mike Rodman, Executive Director of the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure.  “It is a wonderful tool for physicians to compare their own prescribing habits with peers within their specialty and throughout the state.  The Board encourages all physicians to take a moment and review this important data, which allows them to self-reflect on their own prescribing practices and decide whether they need to make any adjustments.  The Board recognizes the Cabinet for all their hard work on this special project and knows that physicians throughout the state will find this information helpful as they care for their patients.”

The new tool received similar accolades from the Kentucky Medical Association (KMA).

“We believe the new KASPER Prescriber Report Card will be a useful tool for physicians to record and compare their prescribing patterns, which could ultimately improve patient safety and overall public health,” said KMA Executive Vice President Pat Padgett.

The KASPER system tracks controlled substance prescriptions dispensed within the state. A KASPER report lists all scheduled prescriptions for an individual for a specified time period, along with the prescriber and the dispenser information. Use of KASPER by practitioners and pharmacists is vital to improving public health and patient safety in Kentucky.

“The prescriber report card has enlightened (me) about the amount of opioids prescribed by, not only myself, but also my fellow Orthopedic Surgeons,” concluded Dr. Joshua Owens, an Orthopedic Surgeon in Maysville. “We as surgeons have a responsibility to our patients and communities to utilize all the resources available to help curb prescribing medications that are very addictive.

For more information on KASPER or to view the Prescriber Report Card User Guide, please visit:

More than 75,000 trucking professionals and representatives will park in Louisville March 22-24 for the Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS), the largest annual heavy-duty trucking industry event in the world.

The Kentucky Exposition Center has hosted MATS every year since 1972, and the show brings $26 million in economic impact to the Louisville region.

This industry-only event accommodates the entire trucking industry in one venue, so professionals can see new products and services; test drive new trucks and technology; connect with suppliers, distributors and customers; and stay up-to-date with changes in the industry.

More than 1,000 exhibitors will showcase everything from engines to electronics, tools to tires and sealants to sleeper cabs – plus a large number of recruiters will be in attendance. Numerous seminars offer educational opportunities for companies, fleets and trucking professionals.

For more information, visit

Nominations are now being accepted for Kentucky’s most distinguished awards honoring excellence for the preservation and rehabilitation of historic buildings, and cultural and archaeological sites. Presented annually since 1979, the Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Historic Preservation Awards ceremony will take place this May in Frankfort during National Historic Preservation Month.

The awards are named for Kentucky’s first state historic preservation officer and recognize contributions to preserving our collective heritage at the local level and throughout the Commonwealth via personal commitment, investment, advocacy, volunteerism, building partnerships, public involvement, lifelong dedication or significant achievement. The Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation hosts the event in partnership with the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office (KHC).

Awards are presented in four categories, and all nominations must be received in the KHC office or postmarked by Friday, April 20. Guidelines, nomination form, submittal instructions and more about previous recipients are available at

Preservation Project awards honor outstanding examples of rehabilitation, restoration and adaptive reuse including, in 2017, a former lumber mill in Covington converted into a community placemaking hub, a Paducah Coca-Cola Plant restored to its former Art Deco glory, the painstaking rebuilding of iconic Rabbit Hash General Store following a fire, and a former Odd Fellows Hall in downtown Paris converted to apartments and retail.

Service to Preservation awards recognize individuals, organizations, nonprofits, public officials, financial institutions, news media, volunteers and others whose contributions have had a positive impact in their communities. In 2017 these included a Midway couple honored for their hands-on rehabilitation of multiple family homes, two Lexington neighborhood associations documenting their African American heritage, and the annual University of Kentucky Historic Preservation Symposium.

The Ida Lee Willis Memorial Award goes to the individual who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to the cause of historic preservation in the Commonwealth. Last year, Linda Bruckheimer of Bloomfield was recognized for more than two decades of preservation philanthropy, investment and advocacy.

Grassroots Awards are given at the selection committee’s discretion and honor those who have committed their personal time and resources to successfully take on a challenge that addresses a preservation issue at the most fundamental level, such as, in 2017, a Mt. Washington youth group that preserved a historic limestone mile marker and a Johnson County man who extensively restored an all-wood vernacular frame structure.

The memorial foundation was chartered in 1979 to honor the late Ida Lee Willis, the first executive director of the Kentucky Heritage Commission (now Kentucky Heritage Council). Current board members are Stephen L. Collins of Shelbyville, chair; William Averell of Frankfort, vice chair; Barbara Hulette of Danville, secretary; Robert Griffith of Louisville, treasurer; and Christopher J. Black, Paducah; Marion Forcht, Corbin; Jolene Greenwell and Charles W. Stewart, Frankfort; Alice Willett Heaton, Bardstown; David L. Morgan and Charles Parrish, Louisville; Donna Horn-Taylor, Springfield; and Milton and Anne Thompson, Washington, D.C.

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Councilwoman Cindi Fowler is inviting residents of District 14 to take part in her next Community Forum on Tuesday, March 20th as a way of bringing an issue or concern to her attention and the attention of Metro Government.

“These forums are part of my goal to always stay in touch with the people of District 14,” says Fowler. “I want to make sure everyone knows the latest update on repaving of Dixie Highway and other ongoing programs that affect this area.”

The next “Fowler Forum Community Meeting” will be held at Valley High School’s Conrad Bachmann Auditorium, 10200 Dixie Highway, beginning at 6:30pm.

Representatives from LMPD, Code Enforcement, MSD, and two representatives of Louisville Public Works and Assets will be in attendance to talk about Dixie Highway and other issues.

The Councilwoman says if the public has other issues of concern, this is a way to let her know how you feel about an issue.

For more information about the Fowler Forum, contact Councilwoman Fowler’s office at 574-1114.

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Councilwoman Madonna Flood (D-24) announces the 2018 ‘Doing Our Part from the Heart” Campaign will be extended through April as a way to help the brave service men and women who are serving their country in some of the most dangerous spots in the world.

“I am very pleased with the response from the community with the collections that have been made so far,” says Flood who kicked off this year’s effort on February 14th. “We have been very fortunate that the weather has worked in our favor this year. We still would like to send as much as we can to make life a little easier for our troops.”

The Councilwoman says the extra time will allow for the community to collect more items to be sent off to those in the military. The new deadline is April 14th.

Joining Flood as sponsors of the 2018 campaign are the Okolona Business Association, the Okolona Fire Department, Republic Bank, Scheller’s Fitness and Cycling, PARC and Jackson-Hewitt Tax Service and Wesley Manor. The campaign runs through the end of March.

If you cannot donate items and wish to make cash contributions to help cover the cost of shipping, Republic Bank continues its partnership by setting up an account to accept all monetary donations to cover postage for the items going overseas. Every package cost $17.40 to send. Make sure to note on the check “From the Heart” account at these locations:

  • Outer Loop                         4808 Outer Loop, 40219
    Shepherdsville                  438 Hwy 44, Shepherdsville 40165
    Corporate                           601 W Market St, 40202
    Brownsboro Rd                 4921 Brownsboro Rd, 40222
    J-Town                                 3811 Ruckreigel Pkwy, 40299
    Dixie                                      5250 Dixie Hwy, 40216


Here is a list of items needed that can be dropped off at a “Doing Our Part” location:

  • Chewing Gum/Mints/Lifesavers/other candies that will not melt
  • Deodorant
  • Lotion
  • Foot Powder
  • Razors
  • Body Wash
  • Band-Aids
  • Q-Tips
  • Bug Repellant with DEET
  • Eye Drops
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Wet Ones
  • Kool-aide or Gatorade individual packs
  • Peanut Butter
  • Individual snacks, chips, nuts, pretzels
  • Neosporin
  • Sun Block/After Sun lotion
  • Nasal Spray
  • Tylenol/Pain Relievers

Here are the drop-off locations for the 2018 Doing Our Part from the Heart Campaign:

  • Republic Bank  “From the Heart Account” at all Republic Banks
  • Okolona Fire Department  8501 Preston Highway, Louisville
  • Scheller’s Fitness & Cycling
    • 8323 Preston Highway, Louisville
    • 11520 Shelbyville Road, Louisville
    • 1000 Veterans Parkway, Clarksville
  • Jackson-Hewitt  All Locations in Louisville and Southern Indiana
  • Wesley Manor   5012 East Manslick Road
  • City Hall  601 West Jefferson, Louisville

For more information about the 2018 “Doing Our Part from the Heart” Campaign, contact Councilwoman Flood’s office at 574-1124.  You can visit the Councilwoman’s webpage at or go to “Doing our Part From the Heart” on Facebook.

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Councilman Bill Hollander is inviting District 9 residents to come out to the bi-monthly “Meet with Bill” meeting on Wednesday, March 21st.

“We are always happy to hear from constituents.  To make those meetings more convenient, we’ll be holding office hours at various places around the district in addition to our regular, evening D9 Community Conversations,” says Hollander.

“Meet with Bill” is set for the Mary T. Meagher Aquatic Center, 201 Reservoir Avenue, from 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. in the party room.

“Please stop by with any questions or concerns. It is an informal way of telling me what’s on your mind,” says Hollander.

For more information about “Meet with Bill” or any other issue in the district, call 574-1109 or email