January 11 Edition on News Stands Wednesday!

January 11 Edition on News Stands Wednesday!

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Paul: Raise Taxes to Keep Medicaid

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U.S. Senator Rand Paul suggested Sunday that Kentucky and other states that expanded Medicaid under federal health reform should have to raise taxes to keep it expanded and not rely on the federal government to continue the benefit. Paul said the Obama administration misled the public about the federal government’s ability to pay for the expansion, “So I’d say that if you want to have more Medicaid you should say we’re going to have to have higher taxes to pay for it.”

Those taxes could be considerable. Under the law, federal funds covered all the expansion cost through 2016. States are now paying 5 percent, and the law calls for that will rise in annual steps to its limit of 10 percent in 2020. Kentucky’s share for 2017 and the first half of 2018 is estimated at $257 million.

The expansion covers people in households with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (about $33,000 a year for a family of four). It added about 44,000 Kentuckians to the program and was largely responsible for cutting by more than half the percentage of Kentuckians without health insurance.

Paul appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” to discuss his plan for replacing the law, which he said should be replaced the same day it is repealed. “Paul’s plan did not directly address the future of states that signed on for expanded Medicaid offered as part of Obamacare,” Gregory Kreig reports for CNN.

“That’s the big question,” Paul told host Jake Tapper. “And I don’t think that’s going to be in the replacement aspect.”

A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky’s other senator, asked to reveal McConnell’s plans for the Medicaid expansion, said in an email, “Sen. McConnell will have lots more to say about this issue in the coming weeks.”

Paul said his replacement plan would allow health-insurance companies to offer cheaper plans with less coverage. “We’re going to legalize the sale of inexpensive insurance,” he said. “That means getting rid of the Obamacare mandates on what you can buy. We are going to help people save through health savings accounts, as well as a tax credit.”

“Under Paul’s program, the bargaining power created by the state and federal exchanges would be replaced with a provision that allows individuals and associations like small businesses to create their own markets,” Kreig reports. “He added that those negotiations with insurance companies could also be used to guarantee the availability of policies that “can’t cancel you and guarantees the issue of the insurance even if you get sick.”

Paul told Tapper, “Our goal is to insure the most amount of people, give access to the most amount of people, at least the amount of cost.”

However, Paul is just one senator, and President-elect Donald Trump says he has his own plan. “Republicans have been at loggerheads over the timing and execution of their promise to repeal Obamacare and replace it with a cheaper alternative that will not disrupt the insurance market and leave millions of Americans without coverage,” Kreig notes.

Stephens Caught Shoplifting With Hundreds of Dollars in Pocket

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Christy Stephens, age 35, Highway 92 West (Williamsburg) was arrested at the Corbin Walmart near Corbin after she had allegedly taken an $18.00 pair of boots despited she allegedly had several hundred dollars in her wallet. Stephens appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and methamphetamine and following the investigation was determined to be under the influence. She was charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence; driving on DUI suspended license; knowingly fraudulently using ID card or electronic code for benefits; shoplifting; giving officer false name or address; failure of owner to maintain required insurance and no registration plates.


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Manchester Career Center Hub to Stay Open

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The Office of Employment and Training inside the Kentucky Career Center in Corbin, which also provides employment services and assistance with unemployment benefits to surrounding cities, is set to be reorganized following a decision by the state. Effective February 16, Kentucky’s 51 career centers will be restructured into 12 hubs and eight existing satellite offices, according to a statement from Education and Workforce Development Cabinet Secretary Hal Heiner. The 12 hubs will be located in Bowling Green, Covington, Elizabethtown, Hazard, Hopkinsville, Lexington, Louisville, Morehead, Owensboro, Paducah, Prestonsburg and Somerset. Eight satellite offices will not be affected. The satellite office in Manchester will remain open.


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Weight Loss Surgeries

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Kentucky has the fifth-highest obesity rate in the country, with nearly 35 percent of Kentucky adults considered obese. For many who are battling the health risks that accompany obesity – such as diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure – weight loss is often a priority. KentuckyOne Health is working to educate Kentuckians on the dangers of obesity, and the surgical options available to those who have been unsuccessful at losing weight through lifestyle changes alone.


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Kentucky Teacher Awards

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The Kentucky Department of Education and Valvoline Inc., sponsors of the Kentucky Teacher Awards, have adopted a new schedule for the awards. The new timetable will provide the Teacher of the Year more flexibility in taking a sabbatical and preparing for the national Teacher of the Year awards. With the change, nominations are now open for the 2018 Kentucky Teacher Awards and may be submitted electronically by visiting the 2018 Kentucky Teacher of the Year website at kentuckytoy.com. The deadline for nominations is February 1.


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Lexington’s Vet Center

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The Lexington Vet Center is participating in a Veterans Outreach and Informational event from 9 AM till Noon, January 20 at Remnant Bread of Life Ministries in Manchester. Veterans and their families are welcome to learn about Vet Center’s readjustment counseling services to include:

• Posttraumatic Stress

• Military Sexual Trauma

• Marriage and Family/Relationships

Staff will be available to discuss readjustment and transitional needs and to connect Veterans to VA and community resources to assist them in successfully transitioning from military to civilian life.


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DARE Program at Hacker

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Hacker Elementary School in Manchester is one of forty groups Pharmacist Robert Goforth has spoken to this school year. Goforth speaks as part of Project DARIS, a group of pharmacists, nurses and healthcare professionals giving free substance abuse prevention education for grades K-12. He’s pushing for legislation that would require life skills to be taught in elementary school, regularly.


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