Tuesday, October 17, 2000

Kentucky Digest

Delta disputes bias complaints

The Associated Press

        HEBRON — Delta Air Lines contends a complaint over tobacco smoke at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport falls short of intentional discrimination and should be ignored.

        The air carrier, which along with subsidiary Comair handles more than 90 percent of the passengers at the airport, told the U.S. Department of Transportation that its air carrier certificate should not be revoked.

        Delta is disputing complaints filed by two Texas anti-smoking activists, Billy Williams and Patricia Young, who claimed Delta intentionally discriminates against people whose disabilities are aggravated by tobacco smoke. Only the airport is named in the complaint.

        Delta said it does not set smoking policies at the airport, and the Airport Board established alternate routes through the airport or breathing apparatus for those adversely affected by smoke.

        Smoking is allowed in restaurants, bars and separately ventilated rooms at the airport. Delta, the airport board and Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp. have agreed to spend $750,000 for separate smoking rooms. Three have opened; five will open by 2001.

Tree harvest banned
in Daniel Boone forest

               LEXINGTON — U.S. District Judge Karl Forester granted a preliminary injunction Monday that derailed a plan to harvest downed and damaged trees from the Daniel Boone National Forest.

        Ben Worthington, supervisor of the national forest, wanted to allow loggers to harvest a portion of the tens of thousands of trees knocked down by storms 1998.

        Mr. Worthington and McCreary County officials have said the trees are a fire hazard.

        But Kentucky Heartwood, a forestry watchdog group, argued that the Forest Service could have used means other than logging to eliminate the hazard.

        The Forest Service has been under a court-ordered ban on logging in the Daniel Boone since 1998.

Crash victim's burial
set for Thursday

               MAYSVILLE — A woman killed in a head-on collision with a truck driven by state Rep. Pete Worthington will be buried here Thursday.

        Sherri Commodore Chambers, a construction worker, was headed home from a job site in Breckinridge County when the crash occurred on a two-lane stretch of U.S. 68 last Thursday night.

        Investigators said Mr. Worthington was intoxicated and his truck had crossed into the lane of oncoming traffic. Mr. Worthington, 59, also was killed.

        Ms. Chambers, 40, is survived by two daughters — Kristin Chambers, 13, and Bianca Chambers, 10. Her funeral will be at 2 p.m. at Bethel Baptist Church in Maysville. Visitation will be at the church 6 to 8 p.m. today.

McConnell to expand
tobacco write-off

               WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell will honor a request from U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms and add language to an agriculture spending bill that would erase last year's flood-damaged flue-cured tobacco crop.

        Earlier this month, Mr. McConnell, R-Ky., attached a proposal to the Agriculture Ap propriations Conference Report that would eliminate a $510 million federal loan and reduce by two-thirds the pool of surplus burley tobacco. The reduction would allow farmers to sell much more burley tobacco next year.

        The move angered some North Carolina lawmakers, including Mr. Helms, R-N.C., who said Mr. McConnell was looking out only for tobacco growers in his state. Most of Kentucky's tobacco farmers grow burley tobacco, while 93 percent of the tobacco grown in North Carolina is flue-cured.

        Mr. McConnell announced Monday that, at Mr. Helms' urging, he would insert a provision that would allow the Flue-Cured Tobacco Stabilization Corp. to wipe out a $125 million federal loan.

Altercation video
release ordered

               FRANKFORT — The attorney general's office has ordered the Jefferson County Department of Corrections to release a videotape of a courthouse altercation to the father of one of those involved.

        In an opinion made public Monday, the attorney general's office said the county corrections department violated the state's Open Records Act.

        Matthew Stewart was involved in an incident caught on videotape in the basement of the Hall of Justice in Louisville in late August. His father, Darryl Stewart, was permitted to watch the video on Sept. 5. He also filed a civil-rights complaint.

        On Sept. 11, Corrections Chief Michael D. Horton turned down the elder Stewart's request for a copy of the video. Mr. Horton said the FBI has decided to investigate Darryl Stewart's complaint, so release of the video to his father would be premature and detrimental to the department.

        Assistant Attorney General Amye L. Bensenhaver said there was no record of the FBI having asked Mr. Horton's department to withhold the video.

State importing
Spanish teachers

               Nine teachers have been brought in from Spain to teach in Kentucky schools this fall.

        All have been screened and certified by the Spanish government and interviewed by Jacque Van Houten, the state education consultant who is overseeing the program.

        The statewide shortage of foreign-language teachers is part of the overall shortage of fully certified teachers.

        The board has issued 27 emergency certifications for foreign-language teachers, including 17 for Spanish.

        Mr. Van Houten is talking with the French and German governments about similar agreements.



        COVINGTON — The city commission has canceled tonight's regular meeting and scheduled a special meeting for Oct. 25, at 7 p.m. in City Hall, 638 Madison Ave. A 6 p.m. closed-door session will precede the public meeting.


        UNION — A free “Fall Colors Walk Through the Arboretum” has been scheduled for 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. today. Participants are asked to meet at Shelter No. 2 in Central Park, 9190 Camp Ernst Road. The walk will be led by Mike Klahr, Boone County extension agent for horticulture.


City Hall service for Berry Thursday
Girl, 12, guilty of bomb threat
Landfill owner sues city
Former executive's indictment dropped
Reds park within budget
Cinergy prepped for grass field
KKK appears to have law on side of its cross
PULFER: Gold medal for helping Erin's mom
Airport to get cell-phone friendlier
Airport approves plan for new parking deck
CROWLEY: Debate details being debated
House race a sleepy hollow
FOP backs Lucas, Buring and Henson
UC endowment tops $1 billion
Agency accredits Mason Police Dept.
Agency rallies support for levy
City struggles with safety budget
Clergy group endorses school levy
Cleves arrests a first
Fund-raiser offers pottery with dinner
High schools say forms for Title IX completed
- Kentucky Digest
Ky. grades poorly again
Local Digest
Newport officials praise gas crisis response
Taft to hit road for Bush
Trial starts for steelworker accused of bomb threat