State will audit KFC Yum! Center

 by Morgan Watkins and Phillip M. Bailey , The Courier-Journal – On a radio interivew with WLOU 104.7, the University of Louisville athletics director says U of L is tired of being portrayed as the ‘bad guys’ in downtown YUM Center arena deal. Audio courtesy: WLOU 104.7 State Auditor Mike Harmon has agreed to audit the Louisville Arena Authority…

GOP bill to disclose legislators’ pensions advances to full Senate

State Sen. Chris McDaniel, R-Latonia, is sponsoring a bill that would allow people to learn how much legislators are collecting from their state pensions. Legislative Research Commission BY JOHN CHEVES, jcheves@herald-leader.com – FRANKFORT — Republicans are taking another shot at revealing lawmakers’ state pensions to the public, a transparency effort that Democrats blocked for at least the last four…

RPK targets 5 Democratic lawmakers with robocalls before floor votes Thursday

by Nick Storm, @NickStorm_cn2 – FRANKFORT — Five Democratic lawmakers who voted against Republican priority legislation in committee on Wednesday are being targeted with robocalls in their home districts in an attempt to change their vote before the bills come for a full vote before the House on Thursday. The calls, which started Thursday morning, specifically reference three bills.…

Bathroom bill filed in Ky – by a Democrat

by Tom Loftus , @TomLoftus_CJ  FRANKFORT, Ky. — Two controversial social conservative bills that many top Republican leaders have de-emphasized in recent months were filed in the Kentucky House on Tuesday by a Democrat. Rep. Rick Nelson, a Democrat from Middlesboro, filed the transgender bathroom bill (House Bill 106) that would require public schools, state universities, state government and…

Trump’s commerce pick opened his wallet for McConnell, Kentucky Republicans

BY CURTIS TATE, ctate@mcclatchydc.com – WASHINGTON — Billionaire investor Wilbur Ross, who is Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Commerce Department, has been a generous contributor to the fundraising committees of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the Republican Party of Kentucky. According to a questionnaire posted by the Senate Commerce Committee this week, Ross contributed $35,200 to…

Action! Louisville a hot spot for movie shoots

 by Kirby Adams and Elizabeth Kramer , The Courier-Journal – Star sightings picked up in Louisville in 2016 with Nicolas Cage spotted at the Louisville Zoo, Jon Voight in the Hurstbourne Lane Walmart and Jeremy Irons at Louisville VA Medical Center. Cage was here to film the horror film “Mom and Dad,” with actress Selma Blair, and Voight was shooting a family-friendly action…

Nate Haney, former deputy secretary of Bevin’s cabinet, joining McCarthy Strategic Solutions

by Nick Storm, @NickStorm_cn2 – Nate Haney, a high-level member of Gov. Matt Bevin’s team, is leaving his post in the executive cabinet to join the private-sector lobbying firm of McCarthy Strategic Solutions. The Louisville Republican will join McCarthy Strategic Solutions as a principal. Haney is the highest-level Bevin administration policy staffer to depart the administration for the…

Kentucky has a Republican speaker of the House for the first time since 1921

BY JACK BRAMMER AND DANIEL DESROCHERS, jbrammer@herald-leader.com – FRANKFORT — The Kentucky House of Representatives elected its first Republican leader since 1921 Tuesday, completing the GOP’s dominance of state legislative chambers in the South. Jeff Hoover was elected speaker of the House by the 100-member chamber shortly after it convened at noon. “There is much work to be…