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Mary Denny helps Thelma Daulton aboard. (Becca Schimmel | Ohio Valley ReSource)

Trying Times For Transit: Rural Systems Face Flat Funding And Rising Demand

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Thelma Daulton goes to the salon to get her hair done at the same time every Friday. She gets picked up at her house and greeted by one of many familiar faces from the Rural Transit Enterprises, Coordinated, or RTEC. Daulton is 95 years old and has been riding the public transit system in Somerset, Kentucky,… Read More

Coal

Bipartisan Bill Would Prop Up Coal Miners’ Pensions

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A bipartisan Congressional group from the Ohio Valley and beyond introduced a new bill to save pensions for retired union coal miners throughout the region. The American Miners Pension Act, or AMP, would secure pensions for about 43,000 miners in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia whose retirement benefits have been undermined by the decline of the coal… Read More

Coal

New Mine Safety “Assistance” Program Raises Concerns

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Lawmakers and union leaders are raising concerns about the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration’s practices amid an increase in coal fatalities. West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin asked MSHA for more information after receiving what he calls “alarming” reports about how the agency is implementing its new Compliance Assistance Program . In a September 7th letter, Manchin wrote… Read More

ohio-river feature

More Breakdowns Halt Ohio River Traffic

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Another breakdown at an aging lock and dam has halted river traffic on the Ohio in western Kentucky. It’s the second such interruption in less than a year for a stretch of river that carries some 90 million tons of cargo annually. “A lot of commerce does go through that section and delays cost the industry money,”… Read More

MSHA photographs from fatal mine accident sites. (MSHA)

Coal Fatalities Rise: Miner Deaths Increase Amid Low Coal Employment

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A rash of fatal coal mining accidents in the Ohio Valley region pushed the nation’s total number of mining deaths to a level not seen since 2015, sparking concern among safety advocates. Already this year 12 miners have died on the job in the U.S., compared to eight fatalities in all of 2016. Two miners… Read More

steel mill

Steely Ban: Ohio Valley Steel Makers Await Trump Import Decision

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Steel makers and manufacturers around the Ohio Valley are waiting for a report from the Trump administration that could trigger higher tariffs on imported steel and bring mixed results for a region that still has strong ties to the industry. In the presidential campaign Trump told voters he would place sanctions on steel imports from… Read More

aerospace-drone

Taking Flight: Ohio Valley’s Aerospace Exports Take Top Dollars

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From the outside Summit Aviation, in the small town of Somerset, Kentucky, looks like any other nondescript, white warehouse. But inside workers craft parts for drones, weapons casings, wing stabilizers and other high-flying products. Summit is one of many small manufacturers making up the growing aerospace industry in the Ohio Valley. Highly specialized companies are… Read More

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Current Events: Trump Floats Changes To Ohio River Infrastructure

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When President Trump picked the Ohio Valley as the setting to promote his infrastructure plan, he also drew attention to an overlooked part of the nation’s transportation system: inland waterways. Agriculture, energy, and manufacturing interests all depend heavily on the Ohio’s aging navigation system. The president’s speech in Cincinnati cheered many industry leaders who have… Read More

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McConnell’s Dual Role In Miners’ Benefits Saga

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Retired miners will not lose their health benefits, as had been feared, thanks to last-minute action from Congress. However, Congress did not act on the miners’ faltering pension benefits fund, which supports some 43,000 retired miners in the Ohio Valley region. The health and pension benefits had been connected in legislation in Congress called the… Read More

Coal

Miners’ Health Benefits Secured But Pensions Remain Uncertain

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United Mine Workers retirees are celebrating a permanent fix for health benefits secured in the federal spending agreement Congress reached over the weekend. However, the deal left them with more work ahead to shore up faltering pension funds. Coal retirees have been fighting to secure benefits for nearly five years. With benefits set to expire… Read More