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Kentucky State Parks increased spending on Kentucky-raised farm products by 9 percent during 2007, spending $162,793. The 17 Kentucky State Park resorts and three state-run Frankfort cafeterias have been purchasing food products from local farmers since 2004 as part of an effort called “Kentucky Proud,” which helps Kentucky farmers find markets for their products.

The Kentucky Office of Financial Institutions (OFI) is warning investors to be wary of fraud as they consider opening or contributing to an individual retirement account (IRA) before the tax deadline of Apr. 15. Investment schemes have recently surfaced that are falsely promoted as “IRA Approved” or endorsed by the IRS. Promising high returns with a bonanza of retirement income, the “IRA-approved” investment schemes range from the latest in high-tech (including wireless cable television and specialized mobile radio) to exotic livestock (such as ostrich farming) to real estate investment pools. Some “IRA-approved” schemes have been promoted through television infomercials and radio ads. “There is no such thing as an ‘IRA-approved’ investment, and the IRS does not give its blessing to specific investments,” said OFI Executive Director Cordell Lawrence. “With these investments, there is an extremely high likelihood that investors will lose 100 percent of their principal.”

Experience Works, the nation’s largest training and employment organization for older workers, is searching for Kentucky’s outstanding older worker.  Nominees for the Experience Works Prime Time Award must be 65 years of age or older, a resident of Kentucky, currently employed and working at least 20 hours each week for pay.  Honorees will travel to Washington, D.C., the week of Sept. 22-26 for the Prime Time Award events.  An online nomination form or a printed nomination form for the 2008 awards can be accessed at www.experienceworks.org. The deadline for nominations is June 1.