The Forward Five – Monday, 8/3/20

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Five Things to Know Today

— Publisher’s Note —

Good morning! Thank You to all of you who shared feedback about the Forward Five in response to my request last week. It was very helpful, and led to me doing a small redesign of the “yellow box” section of the newsletter.

Instead of being broken into sections, it is just the last three days or so of content from the site, in chronological order. It doesn’t include anything that’s in the Five Things for that day. And, the [new] indicator is much clearer – the item has never been in a Forward Five before.

For those of you who use that section, I think this retains the value, while being MUCH easier for me to build each morning.

So again, thank you. AND, let me know what you think of this small change.

BTW, be watching for a new edition of the “every subscriber” newsletter coming out later today. It’s got a similar call for feedback about a different topic.

As always – Wear your mask, wash your hands, and take care of yourself. We’re going to get through this, together. #TeamKentucky

Bruce Maples, publisher
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Today’s Five Things to Know

Weekend coronavirus updates

Governor Beshear only does press releases for his weekend updates (no press conference), and Kentucky Health News summarizes them. This weekend’s numbers appear to show the actions taken a few weeks ago are having an effect.

(Saturday) New cases and rolling average drop; positive-test rate declines but remains above 5%

Kentucky’s coronavirus numbers were almost all improved Saturday, but the positivity rate remains above 5%. Also, county fairs? (Forward Kentucky)

(Sunday) Limited Sunday report keeps the coronavirus in Ky. on plateau

Kentucky reported 463 new cases of the novel coronavirus Sunday, a little more evidence that the state has settled into another plateau, but one much higher than the one it was on a month ago. (Forward Kentucky)

Amy McGrath pushes voter registration in 4 Kentucky cities ahead of the election

Three months out from the November election, Amy McGrath visited four Kentucky cities Saturday in a push to register new voters. McGrath, a Democrat who is challenging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, honed in on those who recently had their voting rights restored and other disenfranchised groups, including Black and Hispanic voters. (Courier-Journal)

Kentucky homeless services systems can’t handle the coming “tsunami of evictions,” advocates warn

Nearly 1 million renter households across the Ohio Valley are unable to pay rent and at risk of eviction, according to research firm Stout. That amounts to 42 percent of renter households in Kentucky, 46 percent in Ohio and 47 percent in West Virginia.

“The homeless services system is not designed to handle a tsunami of evictions,” said Homeless and Housing Coalition of Kentucky executive director Adrienne Bush in a call with reporters on Thursday. “The capacity doesn’t exist in Kentucky as things stand.”

Evictions have been on hold since March to protect renters who’ve seen their income drop because of the pandemic. But a federal ban ends July 31, as does the state eviction ban in Kentucky. Some renters may still be covered by a patchwork of state and local eviction bans. The sunsetting of the federal eviction bans comes in tandem with the end of aid passed by Congress earlier this year. (Ohio Valley Resource)

Why we should use vote-by-mail in November

Adams may want elections to return to normal, but like so many other features of our society, the pandemic has shown that “normal” may not be the best option. A policy paper by Dr. Neal Turpin. (Forward Kentucky)

Kentucky faced a $457 million shortfall. Then it had a surplus. Here’s what happened.

After COVID-19 shut down Kentucky’s economy in the spring, a panel of economists predicted that Gov. Andy Beshear would have to slash hundreds of millions of dollars in spending in order to balance the state budget.

That dire forecast didn’t prove to be accurate.

Instead, as Beshear announced at a news conference last Monday, Kentucky ended the fiscal year in the black on June 30 with General Fund revenues of $11.56 billion, a 1.5 percent increase over the previous year. The state actually wound up with a $177.5 million surplus, most of which Beshear is putting into the “rainy day” reserve fund. John Cheves explains what happened. (Herald-Leader)

Recent Content on Forward Kentucky

[new] indicates item not in a Forward Five before

[new] NKY unions to McConnell: ‘Remember who you represent’ – A Thursday rain shower failed to stay about 50 union men, women, and family members from their appointed rounds outside Sen. Mitch McConnell’s Fort Wright field office. (News)

[new] Marie Antoinette McConnell – Marie Antoinette showed her disdain for everyday people and their sufferings when she said her famous “Let them eat cake” line. Now Mitch McConnell is following in her footsteps, even as his state suffers under a pandemic and an economic collapse. (Commentary)

[new] TSOK – Training Dems to win – This week on The State of Kentucky we talk with Anthony Robinson, political director the National Democratic Training Committee, about their work. Then we’re joined by two candidate who worked with NDTC – and won! (Video show and podcast)

[new] Leave Kamala Harris alone – We loved Senator Kamala Harris when she stood up to Brett Kavanaugh. She was our hero during the Kavanaugh hearing, but now she’s our foe? (Commentary)

[new] McConnell signs were vandalized by persons unknown, but then fixed by conservative neighbors – West Kentucky activists came up with some creative home-made political signs, and put them up along a nearby road. Within a day, the signs were vandalized. The story took a different turn when some conservative neighbors jumped in. (News)

[new] 7/31 update – new cases up for 5th day, ICU use spikes, positivity rate declines, studies don’t look good for school – New cases of the novel coronavirus increased for the fifth straight day, to 778, and the number in intensive care rose to the highest in months. Gov. Beshear emphasized the third consecutive decline in the positivity rate. (News)

Protests in NuLu, COVID’s impact on everything, and Josh Hicks – Josh Hicks, candidate for 6th District, talked to us about what the Lexington protests mean to him (especially as a former police officer) and about his passion for broadband access for all Kentuckians. (Podcast)

Cases up, positive-test rate down; Beshear says mask mandate having effect – Thursday’s coronavirus numbers were mixed, but Gov. Beshear kept accentuating the positive, saying he sees the impact of his mask order, and believes cases are leveling off. But, says we’ll have to wait to see. (News)

SCOKY order on evictions causes confusion – New guidance from the Kentucky Supreme Court on staffing, access to jury trials, and evictions has caused some widespread confusion, especially when it comes to the eviction section. (News)

Calling it the HEALS Act turns out to be a cruel joke – The Republican relief bill doesn’t “heal” anyone or anything – except corporations and defense contractors. Read what’s in it – and what’s NOT in it. (Analysis)

DemCast is an advocacy-based 501(c)4 nonprofit. We have made the decision to build a media site free of outside influence. There are no ads. We do not get paid for clicks. If you appreciate our content, please consider a small monthly donation.

Forward Kentucky is an independent media organization focused on progressive news and issues in Kentucky. Our objectives are to provide journalism that is objective, policies that are effective, and commentary that is progressive. Our goal is to help Kentucky become all that it can be through government that works, for all. We are "the progressive voice for Kentucky politics."

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