Square Dance



Uncertainty still clouds county’s budget picture



Uncertainty in the state budget has led to uncertainty in county budgets as well. This includes the Letcher County Fiscal Court’s budget for fiscal year 2018-2019. At the court’s April meeting this week, Judge/Executive Jim Ward said that while the overall expectation is for lower coal severance tax receipts, nothing will be certain until Governor Matt Bevin either signs the […]

Candidates look at coal



Candidates for Letcher County offices seem to have mostly come to terms with the decline of the coal industry, and say the county has to move on to a new economy. The Mountain Eagle sent surveys to all 32 candidates for judge/executive and magistrate asking their positions on the economy and other issues facing Letcher County. Of the 12 who […]

No salary increases for county officials



Letcher County’s five magistrates and other county-paid elected officials will continue drawing their current annual salaries during the next four years following action this week by the Letcher Fiscal Court. Magistrates adopted the existing salary schedule for elected officials this week in keeping with state law that requires that salaries for magistrates and several other county officials must be set […]

How will state’s budget affect Letcher County? Who knows?



The never-ending state budget battle got even more convoluted over the weekend after the Kentucky General Assembly overrode two of Gov. Matt Bevin’s vetoes on Friday and just one day later amended that budget, pulling more than $10 million back out of school SEEK funding and giving it to fiscal courts. Figures put out by the Kentucky Coal County Coalition […]

Voter registration deadline is April 23



Residents of Letcher County and the rest of Kentucky have less than a week left to register to vote in next month’s primary election. The deadline to register is April 23. Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes says county clerks’ offices statewide will accept online and paper applications until 4 p.m. local time on the deadline. She says mail-in voter […]

State schools boss is forced to resign; charter schools fan has replaced him




FRANKFORT Kentucky’s top education officer was ousted Tuesday and replaced by a charter schools advocate in a move that escalated tensions between the state’s Republican leaders and teachers who have been protesting for better funding. Officially, Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt resigned on Tuesday. But in an impromptu conversation with reporters hours before the decision was announced, it was clear Pruitt […]

What passed in Frankfort was not tax ‘reform’




If there is one issue that nearly every legislator agrees on, it is that Kentucky needs comprehensive tax reform. What passed the General Assembly last Friday and Saturday, however, was anything but that. Instead of tax modernization, we got a tax shift, meaning that the vast majority of working families will pay more so large businesses and the wealthy can […]

Political Cartoon



Paul Ryan’s family legacy



House Speaker Paul Ryan’s stated reason for leaving office after this year’s election sure is getting a lot of traction. “If I am here for one more term, my kids will only have ever known me as a weekend dad,” he said. “I just can’t let that happen. So I will be setting new priorities in my life.” His children […]


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