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Round-Up: Sunday January 20

Take a look at what's making news around Covington and around Kentucky:

MAYORS GROUP URGES ACTION ON REGION'S HEROIN EPIDEMIC

At Saturday's meeting of the Kenton County Mayors Group, the focus was on the growing heroin epidemic in Covington and Northern Kentucky:

The meeting, which took up the first two hours of the regular gathering of Kenton County mayors, arrived at two points: The problem is far worse than the public realizes and it’s time to put pressure on state and federal legislatures to act.

“We in local government need to cooperate. The one thing we can do, the most good, is to put pressure on the General Assembly to fund programs,” said Kenton District Judge Douglas Grothaus, one of the panel invited to address mayors. “This is a mental health issue, and it’s largely ignored because there isn’t enough funding.”

Full story: Cincinnati Enquirer/Dave Malaska

ASHLEY JUDD ON POSSIBLE SENATE RUN: "KENTUCKY NEEDS A FIGHTER"

Actress Ashley Judd is still mulling a possible run for the United States Senate against Kentucky's most powerful politician, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Judd talked about the support she's receiving during Saturday's Bluegrass Ball, an event put on by the Kentucky Society of Washington in DC:

She continued: “The people of Kentucky need a fighter and certainly going back 10 generations, I’ve got some fighters from those hills in my family and as soon as I know anything — after I’ve told the family members to whom I’ve made my promises that they’ll be the first to know — you will be up to date in real time.”

But does she have a time frame, she was asked? “There’s not a time frame,” Judd said.

Full story: Politico

LOCKED SCHOOL DOORS, OTHER SAFETY MEASURES COMING TO KY GENERAL ASSEMBLY

In the wake of the deadly school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo established a subcommittee to explore possible legislation for the state to enact to further protect students from violence:

Henderson says he plans to file three main pieces of legislation to improve school safety, including the bill he’s already introduced to make the subcommittee permanent. He also plans to craft legislation that would require schools to follow certain inexpensive mandates, such as keeping all doors locked, and other actions they can take now, he says.

“I think that it's going to take a series of bills and a series of laws to get our school system where it needs to be,” he says.

A strong Second Amendment supporter, Henderson says he believes in increasing School Resource Officers—law enforcement officers trained to be in schools. There are over 200 SROs in schools across the commonwealth and officials with the Center for School Safety say more district officials are considering placing them in their schools soon.

Full story: WFPL

HUNDREDS RALLY IN FRANKFORT FOR "GUN APPRECIATION DAY"

Opponents of reform to the nation's gun laws flocked to Frankfort by the hundreds as part of the Gun Appreciation Day recognized across the country Saturday:

"The only protest that I make today is any new gun legislation, period," organizer Jim Franklin told the crowd.

That was the message that brought hundreds from across the state to the Capitol steps as part of national Gun Appreciation day.

"This is a grassroots effort to get things kicked off to stand, to get America to stand for our Second Amendment rights," said Franklin in an interview.

Many came bearing signs, and some bearing arms.

"I want to take care of myself, protect myself and I believe that all Americans should have that right," said Janet Carter of Harrodsburg.

That was a common theme here, that Americans have the right to protect themselves, even against their own government.

A sign carried by Bellarmine University student Don Flowers graphically made the point. It contained images of infamous dictators.

"The second amendment was put in place to protect against tyrannical government. These are all examples, Hitler, Stalin, Mao," said Flowers.

Full story with video: WDRB

SEE ALSO: Five people were shot across the country at three separate Gun Appreciation Day gun shows The Los Angeles Times

SEE ALSO: What can DC learn from a conversation at a Kentucky gun range? KY Forward

HEADLINES:

LOBBYISTS SPEND RECORD AMOUNT IN KENTUCKY IN 2012 Courier-Journal

EASTERN KENTUCKY TOWN SEEKS NEW BEGINNING THROUGH PRAYER WKYT

THREE ARRESTED AFTER ATTEMPT TO DUPE WOULD-BE POT BUYER OUT OF $18,000 WDRB

BEACH WATERPARK TO REOPEN, HIRE 400 SEASONAL WORKERS Business Courier