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Matt Jones won’t be returning as host of WLEX’s ‘Hey Kentucky!’ Here’s why.

Matt Jones and Adam Edelen announce new group

Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones and former state auditor Adam Edelen on Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016, announced the creation of The New Kentucky Project, a nonprofit they hope will cultivate a new generation of political leaders.
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Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones and former state auditor Adam Edelen on Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016, announced the creation of The New Kentucky Project, a nonprofit they hope will cultivate a new generation of political leaders.

Lexington radio and television host Matt Jones has been let go from his position as host of “Hey Kentucky!” on WLEX.

Jones said in a tweet Friday afternoon that WLEX had “made the decision to end my time as host of @hey_kentucky due my decision to write the ‘Mitch, Please’ book.”

WLEX decided last month to pull Jones off the air while he considers whether to seek the Democratic nomination to challenge U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Earlier this week, Jones announced his plans for the book taking aim at McConnell. He said he’ll decide soon whether to enter the race, which Amy McGrath has already joined.

“As a broadcaster of balanced and unbiased news and information, WLEX has an obligation to fairness across its platforms and we believe this decision is consistent with that commitment,” WLEX Vice President and General Manager Pat Dalbey said in a statement on WLEX’s website. “‘Hey Kentucky!’ and WLEX will continue to cover Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race with the same objectivity and transparency with which it reports all political races and other stories important to its Lexington community.”

Jones, the founder of Kentucky Sports Radio, said his immediate plans are to “focus on KSR Radio and making ‘Mitch, Please’ a book worthy of losing your job for.”

Jones is the latest in a series of exits from Lexington’s NBC affiliate.

Friday was Hayley Harmon’s last day as host of “Live with Hayley,” a show she previously co-hosted with Lee Cruse.

Cruse was let go from the station in May, a few weeks after making on-air comments that were deemed inappropriate by the station and decried as racist by many on social media.

Harmon said earlier this week that she had decided to leave the station. She said the months since Cruse’s firing had been “really hard.”

As Harmon’s show transitions over the coming weeks, meteorologist Seth Phillips, who has been co-hosting with Harmon, will be joined by former WKYT anchor Jennifer Palumbo during the 12:30 p.m. timeslot.

WLEX had not announced future plans for hosting “Hey Kentucky!” as of early Friday night. The show airs nightly at 7:30 p.m.

“If you need me, I will be out to pasture with @leecruse and @Hayley_Harmon,” Jones said in another tweet.

He said it was the same day three years ago that he was announced as the host for “Hey Kentucky!”

Jones said via Twitter that he would miss the show “more than I can even say. What we built during a short time was remarkable and creating and developing that show was a true joy in my life.”

He thanked WLEX for his time at the station, saying “I don’t like how it ended but they took a chance on us when no one else would and I will be forever indebted.”

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