Around the South for Aug. 13: KY, AL & AR

Kentucky: Beshear announces loan payoff. Gov. Steve Beshear (D) announced that the state government has paid off a $972 million loan from the federal government two years ahead of schedule, reports Lex18.com. The move will save businesses about $105 in federal taxes per employee. The money was borrowed when a high jobless rate increased unemployment costs in the state sharply. Kentucky’s unemployment rate was 10.9% in January 2009 and is 5.1% today ……. Alabama: Bentley terminates Planned Parenthood agreement. “The deplorable practices at Planned Parenthood have been exposed to Americans,” Bentley said in a statement reported by AL.com, “and I have decided to stop any association with the organization in Alabama.” The Alabama Medicaid Agency paid Planned Parenthood $4,351 for services, not including abortion, over the past two years ……. Arkansas: Cotton in Asia. US Sen. Tom Cotton (R) is on a week-long trip to Japan, Taiwan and South Korea, reports KUAR News, where he will visit senior government officials and US military commanders. He will also visit US forces on Okinawa, including troops from Arkansas …….