Tuesday, September 17, 2002

Around the Commonwealth

Dayton to hold voter registration drive

        DAYTON - A voter registration drive will be held at the Dayton Board of Education on 200 Clay St. from 2-5 p.m. Wednesday. The 21st Century Dayton Community Learning Center is sponsoring the registration drive. Citizens need to bring a valid drivers license or other form of official picture identification.

        For more information contact Tom Ratterman at Dayton Independent Schools at (859) 292-3991.

        Old Erlanger library branch closes Sept. 28

        ERLANGER - After 24 years of service, the Erlanger branch library on Dixie Highway will mark its last day of business Sept. 28.

        Visitors on that day will be invited to stamp their painted handprint on the library's meeting room wall. There also will be a guest book for visitors to sign. The guest book will be placed in the time capsule of the new Erlanger branch at 401 Kenton Lands Road. Refreshments will be served throughout the day.

        The Erlanger branch at 3130 Dixie Highway will be closed for two weeks, starting Sept. 30, for the move to its new location. Before the new library opens, materials can be returned to the book drop at the current Erlanger branch or to the Kenton County Public Library's Covington and Independence locations.

        The new Erlanger branch will open Oct. 13, with a grand-opening ceremony at 2 p.m.

        For information, call (859) 491-7610. To learn more about the new Erlanger branch, visit the Kenton County Public Library Web site at www.kenton.lib.ky.us.

        TANK schedules in effect; info available

        FORT WRIGHT - New Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky (TANK) schedules that took effect Sept. 14 are now available at various locations, including TANK buses.

        Five routes were eliminated, while many others have experienced route changes or reduced service hours, after TANK's budget request for the current fiscal year was not fully funded.

        New schedules are now available at the Covington Transit Center at 220 Madison Ave. in Covington, at the bus stop in Cincinnati, 120 E. Fourth St. in the Mercantile Center, Monday through Friday by calling the TANK information center at (859) 331-TANK or on TANK buses.

        Latonia firehouse dedication planned

        COVINGTON - The dedication and grand opening of the new “James E. Ruth” Latonia Fire Station at 3315 Church St. will be at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

        The new $1.3 million facility replaces a 63-year-old fire station on Southern Avenue that could not accommodate modern emergency vehicles. The 90,000-square-foot station will have three bays for a pumper, a ladder/pumper, an ambulance, and sleeping quarters for eight.

        Spence fund-raiser scheduled at Barton's

        COVINGTON - Covington City Commissioner J.T. Spence will hold a campaign fund-raiser Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Barton's on Park Place.

        The suggested contribution to Mr. Spence's re-election campaign is $25. For more information call (859) 581-3161.

        State vehicle chief, Dale Shrout, resigns

        FRANKFORT - Former state Sen. Dale Shrout, of Mount Sterling, abruptly resigned his position as commissioner of the Department of Vehicle Regulation, citing a need to attend to family business.

        Transportation Cabinet spokesman Mark Pfeiffer said Mr. Shrout's resignation was dated Sept. 13, but not delivered until Monday. Mr. Shrout did not give two weeks' notice of his departure and was not expected back at work, Mr. Pfeiffer said.

        Mr. Shrout did not return calls for comment.

        Mr. Shrout, who was a retired probation and parole officer, was appointed in August 2001 after the sudden departure of another commissioner, Ed Logsdon. The department had been in disarray and was the subject of internal and attorney general's investigations into reports that driver license records were being altered for money.

        Bobby Russell, the cabinet's new inspector general, said Monday that neither Mr. Shrout nor the department were the subject of any inquiry.

        William “Mack” Bushart was appointed acting commissioner. Mr. Bushart has been director of the Division of Motor Vehicle Licensing for the past two years.

        Search for Ky. man leads to air crashes

        PENSACOLA, Fla. - Two ultralight planes searching for the body of a missing swimmer crashed Sunday in high winds caused by Tropical Storm Hanna, injuring two people, and a beachgoer found a body in the surf.

        Benjamin J. Allen, 20, of Louisville, was missing and presumed drowned in rough surf kicked up by the storm. He had been body surfing with his younger brother Saturday when he got caught in a rip current.

        The body found Sunday was sent to the Escambia County Medical Examiner's Office for identification, the Pensacola News Journal reported.

        Honored WWII nurse, Corregidor vet, dies

        CLINTON - Earleen Allen Francis, 91, one of a small group of military nurses who distinguished themselves during years of captivity as prisoners of war in World War II, died Sunday.

        Ms. Francis was among about 60 Army and Navy nurses captured by Japanese forces after the fall of Corregidor, a small, fortified island in the Philippines.

        For three years, Ms. Francis and other nurses cared for other prisoners, both civilian and military.

        Gov. Paul Patton honored Ms. Francis for her service during a ceremony last month.

        Ms. Francis' friends say she was scarred by her captivity and worked only infrequently after she returned to the United States. She was married briefly to Garnet Francis, an Army dentist she met in the Philippines.

        Ms. Francis, who suffered from Alzheimer's disease, had no family. She lived with a caregiver in Clinton. She was a native of Bardwell.

        Baptists will leave Louisville group

        LOUISVILLE - The Kentucky Baptist Convention will end its membership in Greater Louisville Inc. because of conflicting views on expanded gambling at such places as Churchill Downs.

        The convention's executive director, Bill Mackey, sent a letter to Greater Louisville Inc. president Steve Higdon recently informing him of the decision.

        “Our organization cannot be involved in supporting the expansion of gambling in our state,” the letter said.

        “We have been disappointed that Greater Louisville Inc. has chosen to support expanded gambling as part of its legislative agenda.”

        Mike Bosc, a spokesman for Greater Louisville Inc., said the organization supports allowing video slot machines at Churchill Downs as a way to “level the playing field” with the riverboat gambling industry.


700,000 expected downtown this weekend
New school chief puts kids first
Smaller convention expansion unveiled
Library to cut back hours
Marines train in Dayton for urban combat
PULFER: Dog tales
Boycott leaders protest prosecutor
Forest Park bans kids playing on street
UC gets $30M to research strokes
$39M UC dorm first in 30 years
Dog-eating coyotes outfox sharpshooters
Elderly couple die in crash
Lawyer claims flaws in Boyles indictment
Light-rail foes rally at courthouse
Local Digest
Rx for quick meds unveiled
Lakota charity broadens reach
Little town celebrates 150th year
Oxford hospital has new ultrasound unit
Hagan will back drug treatment ballot issue
State officeholders warned to stay out of local politics
Child support posters help find parents
Child support gets job assist
Clermont increases nonsupport arrests
Home closings may see changes
Man who met teen on Web arrested
Food bank to kick off new site
- Around the Commonwealth
Trial set for sheriff's alleged shooter