- Video Games
DECEMBER 7, 2015
FRANKFORT, Ky. – KentuckyWired beat out seven other regional winners in being named The Bond Buyer’s 2015 ‘Deal of the Year’ last night at an awards ceremony in New York City. The Kentucky Economic Development Authority earned the award in recognition of its $232 million tax-exempt bond transaction for construction of the 3,200-plus mile broadband project.
“I am tremendously excited about this award, as it puts us in great company across the country,” said Gov. Steve Beshear. “This award is one more example of Kentucky’s innovative and forward-thinking strategy to fund one of the largest and most significant infrastructure projects in our state’s history. As the largest public-private partnership in the nation for public technology, KentuckyWired will bring broadband connectivity to every county in the Commonwealth.”
“Nominees this year faced stiff competition from many eminently qualified deals,” said Michael Scarchilli, editor in chief of The Bond Buyer. “We chose the finalists for innovation, the ability to pull complex transactions together under challenging conditions, the ability to serve as a model for other financings and the public purpose for which a deal’s proceeds were used."
KentuckyWired is the fiber optic infrastructure to bring high-speed Internet service across the state, which currently ranks at or near the bottom of the country in broadband speeds and availability. There will be access points in every county with nearly 1,100 government facilities connected to the network. Because the network is open access, local internet service providers can tap into the network to deliver last-mile service to homes and businesses.
“It has been a privilege for our team to work on the KentuckyWired project and I appreciate all the long hours and innovative thinking they brought to the table,” said Finance and Administration Cabinet Secretary Lori H. Flanery. “We have broken new ground, both literally and figuratively, with this public-private partnership with Macquarie Capital and their consortium partners.”
Kentucky was in prestigious company and in strong competition for Deal of the Year. Other regional winners that vied for the top award included:
“Macquarie Capital and its partners are extremely proud to be a part of the KentuckyWired project,” said Nicholas Hann, senior managing director and co-head of North American PPPs at Macquarie. “This innovative, open access network positions Kentucky to provide the best high-speed internet services to homes and businesses while increasing the state’s capacity for long-term economic growth. We firmly believe that the public-private partnership model is well-established and enables projects like KentuckyWired to be completed on an accelerated timetable while transferring risk to the private sector.”
Deal of the Year Awards represent the full diversity of the communities and public purposes that are served by the municipal finance market, from the largest to the smallest deals. The awards were open to transactions that closed between Oct. 1, 2014 and Sept. 25, 2015. Kentucky’s transaction closed on Sept. 3, 2015 and was well received in the marketplace.
Short videos of all award winners are available online at http://www.bondbuyer.com/special-reports/the-bond-buyers-14th-annual-deal-of-the-year-awards-1088267-1.html.
NOVEMBER 6, 2015
"...We have been receiving several calls in reference to phone calls where the
message or the person on the phone says they are from the IRS and leave a
phone number to call back with threatening that the person they called
will be arrested or will be sued for taxes.
This scam aimed at obtainingpersonal information for use in identity theft.
No one should give out personal information over the phone if they are not
100% sure whom they are speaking with. Any agency that you do business
with should already have your information and should not need you to
verify it over the phone.
Chief Deputy Mark Wheeler
Lawrence County Sheriff's Office
Kentucky Press News Service
Eight Kentucky State Police telecommunicators from throughout the commonwealth were recognized Friday at graduation ceremonies for the seventh class of the agency’s in-house Telecommunications Academy.
“Across the state, KSP telecommunicators provide a lifeline to both citizens in need and officers in the field,” says KSP Commissioner Rodney Brewer. “They serve as an unseen, but vital link in keeping law enforcement officers and the public safe at all times of the day or night.”
Representing five agency posts, the group began its studies on September 14, 2015 at the KSP Training Academy in Frankfort. The course provided 236 hours of instruction during a six-week period. The curriculum included subjects such as legal liability, limits of telecommunicator authority, the telecommunicator’s role in public safety, interpersonal communications, customer service, interaction with the news media, stress, ethics and confidentiality, responder safety, basic fire dispatch, state emergency operations plans, criminal justice information systems, cardio pulmonary resuscitation, first aid training, emergency medical dispatch and special needs callers.
The final week of the academy included training on computer-aided dispatch and other databases. To complete the course, the telecommunicators were required to successfully process scripted calls for service and demonstrate proficiency in obtaining pertinent information, dispatching responders, providing emergency medical dispatch if needed and correctly documenting information from the call for service.
The graduates of the seventh KSP Telecommunications Academy included:
Merissa Breedlove, Post 1, Mayfield
Katelyn Roy, Post 6, Dry Ridge
Ryan Benton, Post 8, Morehead
Kris Cox, Post 8, Morehead
Kimberly Crase, Post 8, Morehead
Chris Cornett, Post 12, Frankfort
Tammy Crady, Post 12, Frankfort
Megan Patrick, Post 14, Ashland
Chris Cornett of Post 12-Frankfort was the class valedictorian with an overall grade point average of 96 percent.
According to Jason Long, Law Enforcement Training Instructor at the Kentucky State Police Academy, working in today’s emergency services communications center requires a number of qualities and characteristics that are absolutely imperative. These characteristics include the ability to handle very stressful, challenging conditions, maintaining a flexible work schedules, practicing empathy in dealing with others and having the ability to learn and adapt, especially in areas of technology.
His advice to those who may be considering the field as a career? “You need to think hard about whether you are willing to make the sacrifices you have to make. You have to spend time away from your family. You have to work weekends and holidays. With all the continuing training required, there is a big investment of time and you need to be sure you can make the commitment.”
“To be honest, it’s not a job for everyone,” he says. “It is stressful and challenging and some people simply can’t deal with the types of calls and deadly incidents that we have to handle.”
Kentucky Press News Service
FRANKFORT – Commercial vehicle drivers now can go online to verify that their certifications for a commercial driver license (CDL) are up to date.
It’s all thanks to a new website, launched by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s Division of Driver Licensing.
“With our new website, drivers can access records 24 hours a day,” Rodney Kuhl, Commissioner of the cabinet’s Department of Vehicle Regulation, said in a news release. “We realize most CDL drivers don’t work on a 9-to-5 schedule. The website will allow them access when the time is right for them.”
Kentucky requires multiple documents in order to be issued and hold a CDL. They include a self-certification form identifying the type of driving the operator expects to engage in once a license is in hand. In addition, CDL holders must have a valid medical certification card on file at all times. A commercial application must also include a 10-year driver history, listing all states in which the driver had a license.
The information must be forwarded to the Division of Driver Licensing and posted prior to a driver applying for a license at a circuit court clerk’s office.
The website, which is for informational purposes only, will allow drivers to ensure everything has been received and on file, keeping them current on all requirements.
Checking a driver’s status on the website requires the driver’s name, Kentucky license number and date of birth. User instructions can be found on the website.
The new website is but the latest in a series of innovations undertaken by the cabinet during Gov. Steve Beshear’s administration to enhance customer service, convenience and public transparency:
By Justin Madden
A University of Kentucky professor was part of the team that discovered what is thought to be a new species of human ancestor.
Andrew Deane, UK paleoanthropologist and associate professor of anatomy and neurobiology, served as a member of the Rising Star Expedition, a group of international scientists who described more than 1,500 fossils exhumed from a cavern in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site outside Johannesburg, South Africa, according to the university.
Lee Berger, research professor at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, led the expeditions that recovered the fossils called Homo naledi.
Deane was one of 30 experts invited by Berger to help examine the fossils for six months. Deane focused on the hand and the foot.
"It's really remarkable and really a big privilege to be involved in something this unique, not only because the find itself is so overwhelming, its scope and the amount of material and representation that we have, but also because this is a fairly unique species," Deane said. "We're not yet clear 100 percent on where this thing fits in the human family tree. There are certainly a lot of questions that remain unanswered that we're still working on, but it certainly adds another member to our family."
The hand and foot of the Homo naledi resemble those of modern-day humans. But they are also primitive, Deane said. The fingers and toes are much longer and curved, but the rest of the hand and foot appear to mirror those of modern humans. The wrists appear to be stable and suited for making tools.
The skull, shoulders and chest of the Homo naledi also appear to have characteristics both primitive and modern, Deane said.
"The significance of this find, in a addition to the volume of material, is that it adds yet more evidence to suggest that human evolution is a much more diverse thing than what we previously thought," Deane said.