Business briefcase: Dec. 20, 2013

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By The Staff

Shelby barn is painted with Humana message

A barn in Shelby County is among three in the state on which CareSource and Humana Inc. have launched a “Homegrown” alliance to revitalize former barns in three Kentucky locations by adding signs to support the Humana – CareSource mission of serving people with Medicaid health care.

There also are barns in Carroll and Grant counties, and a release about the program said each was chosen because its ability to provide the company’s message.

In Shelby, the barn is on westbound U.S. 60 and is painted with “#Covering the Commonwealth” on two sides.

Officials expect more than 60,000 drivers are expected to see the displays on a daily basis. The barn designs were painted in late October and early November and will remain up at a minimum of one year.


Holiday fuel prices looking down

With Christmas week upon us, average retail gasoline prices in Louisville have risen 2.9 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.27per gallon as of Sunday, according to GasBuddy's daily survey of 644 gas outlets in Louisville. This compares with the national average that has fallen 2.4 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.21.

Including the change in gas prices in Louisville during the past week, prices were 10.2 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 3 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has increased 0.7 cents per gallon during the past month and stands 3.8 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.

"Another downward trend in gasoline prices has emerged as motorists hit the roads in the last full week before Christmas," GasBuddy.com Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan said. "Historically, this is about the time of year that gasoline prices hit their yearly lows, but this time around, I have more optimism that prices may move even lower in the next few weeks.

“As we finish our 2014 forecast at GasBuddy in the near future, we can say that 2014 does offer some relief compared to what we'll end up seeing in terms of average in 2013, but for the time being, the next week looks to see a continued drop in gasoline prices."

GasBuddy operates LouisvilleGasPrices.com and more than 250 similar Web sites that track gasoline prices at over 140,000 gasoline stations in the United States and Canada.

Walmart returning to Crestwood

National retail chain Walmart is “rolling back” into Crestwood. The retailer has sent out notices to Crestwood residents about its intent to build a Walmart Supercenter in Crestwood. Walmart previously had a Crestwood location at the Crestwood Station shopping center, but closed it after building a new location on Westport Road in Louisville. It also has a store in La Grange, just south of Interstate 71.


Sunrise president resigns

Bill Smithwick, president of Sunrise Children’s Services, has resigned, following an overwhelming vote of no confidence in his leadership last month by messengers to the annual meeting of the Kentucky Baptist Convention in Paducah. Smithwick had recommended changing Sunrise’s hiring practices to allow homosexual employees at the Baptist-affiliated child care agency.

“Having served the children of SCS effectively and sacrificially for 16 years, Dr. Smithwick has recognized the need for new leadership for this season in the organization's long and rich history,” according to an official statement from Sunrise’s board of directors that was reported in The Western Recorder.
Sunrise’s trustees rejected Smithwick’s recommendation Nov. 8, after at least two of its trustees shared their concerns with convention leaders, bringing the board’s discussions of the agency’s hiring practices in August to light.

In addition to a vote of no confidence in Smithwick’s leadership, convention messengers also voted to replace a slate of six nominees for Sunrise’s 24-member board, along with filling five other vacancies due to resignations from the board.

"We appreciate so much his faithful service to the children and to Sunrise over 16 years and wish him all the best as he moves forward," Paul Chitwood, executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention told a reporter for WDRB-Ch. 41 following Smithwick's resignation last week.

Smithwick reportedly proposed the change in hiring practices as a pre-emptive action to sustain Sunrise’s government funding.


Bulletin board

  • The board of Shelby Development Corporation, which typically meets the last Friday of the month, will not meet in December.


Bits & bytes

  • Gib Gosser, member of the Kentucky State Fair Board, has been named the Executive of the Year by the International Associations of Fairs and Exposition at its 123rd annual convention.
  • Louisville is making a splash in National Geographic Traveler magazine as "Best of the World" destination. Other destinations featured include Oslo, Norway; Taxco, Mexico; and Yakushima, Japan. The December 2013/January 2014 issue featuring Louisville is available on newsstands now.
  • McDonald’s Restaurants of Kentuckiana presented a check for more than $144,000 to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kentuckiana to support the families of sick children. The group donates $.04 from every Happy Meal and Mighty Kids Meal sold to the charity.


Briefcase is compiled from press releases and other information submitted to The Sentinel-News. The Kentucky Press News Service contributed to this report. Information and photos may be E-mailed to sharonw@SentinelNews.com. The deadline is noon Wednesday.