Indiana News

Indiana related news items and stories.

Pelath To Step Down As House Democrats' Leader

Nov 19, 2017

 

Indiana House Democrats will have a new leader after this week. Minority Leader Rep. Scott Pelath (D-Michigan City) announced Sunday he’ll step down from his post Tuesday.

Pelath will remain in his House seat through the end of his term but he says he won’t run for re-election next year. Pelath and his wife recently had a baby and the Michigan City Democrat says he wants to spend more time with his family.

IDOE Asks Public To Comment On Federal Waiver Request

Nov 17, 2017

Graduation rates at some Indiana high schools could plummet due to a new federal definition of regular diplomas. It would prohibit schools from including students who earn the general diploma in calculated graduation rates. Instead, federal guidelines would only count students who earn the Core 40 diploma or above.

General diplomas require fewer math, social studies and science credits – and less testing.

Elkhart County Commissioner Mike Yoder confirmed Thursday that CoreCivic of  Nashville, Tennessee has expressed interest in Elkhart County property to for a new Immigration and Customs Detention Center in Indiana. County Commissioners will have final approval over the facility if a final proposal is presented.

Richard Aguirre, Founder of Elkhart County HOPE, a nonprofit immigrant advocacy group, said community leaders found out about CoreCivics’ interest in property last Friday.

Indiana's First Food Bank Based Health Clinic Now Open

Nov 17, 2017


Krystal Cheatham is a CMA at the new clinic. (Jill Sheridan/IPB News)

Indiana’s first food bank-based health clinic is now open in Indianapolis. The clinic is operated through a partnership between Gleaners Food Bank and the St. Vincent hospital system.

The new clinic location is right next door to the pantry inside Gleaners in Indianapolis. If a client comes in to get food and also has a health issue, they can see a provider right there.

The Hoosier unemployment rate rose 0.1 percent in October to 3.9 percent, its highest level since March.

And while the increase wasn’t as large as it’s been the last couple of months, it’s the first time in six years the number has gone up four months in a row. And the increase over that span – nearly 1 percent – is the largest four-month spike since 2009, at the height of the recession.

The FDA has approved a device developed in Indiana that helps reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms. The NSS-2 BRIDGE is a nerve-stimulating device placed behind the ear which sends electrical pulses to the brain.

It’s been shown to reduce severe effects of opioid withdrawal, such as nausea and vomiting. Sen. Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis) says the technology fills a gap in treatment.

Indiana Senate Democrats Unveil 2018 Agenda

Nov 16, 2017

Indiana Senate Democrats’ agenda for the upcoming legislative session is a retread of many past agendas: expanded voter access measures, a proposed minimum wage increase, and a push for a bias crimes law.

There aren’t enough kids to fill South Bend Community Schools to their full capacity, so officials unveiled a proposal this week to close or repurpose six elementary and middle schools. If the proposal – called Focus 2018 – receives approval, it would also help the corporation meet federal racial requirements mandated for the district.

Opioids Impact Indiana's Infant Mortality Rate

Nov 15, 2017

The Indiana Department of Health marked five years of its Labor of Love summit, an annual event aimed at reducing the state’s infant mortality rate. The rate of infants dying before their first birthday has risen steadily since the campaign began, mainly because of substance use disorders.

When the initiative kicked off in 2012, 556 babies lost their life – last year that number was 623. Indiana State Health Commissioner Kristina Box says any progress the state has made has been overshadowed.

Alcohol Commission Recommends Sunday Sales

Nov 14, 2017

A special panel studying Indiana’s alcohol laws recommends the legislature legalize Sunday alcohol laws – with some limitations. The commission Tuesday postponed any other recommendations.

The alcohol commission voted in support of a preliminary draft for legislation to allow Sunday alcohol sales. The proposal would give liquor, grocery, and convenience stores the ability to sell alcohol for carry-out between noon and 8 p.m. on Sundays.

The head of a special study commission isn’t entirely on board with a recent deal struck between grocery and liquor stores in the ongoing debate over changes to Indiana’s alcohol laws.

 

Transit Development Districts, or TDDs, were authorized last year by the the state of Indiana. They are special-purpose districts designated to help fund specific transportation projects. The TDD advisory committee for the South Shore Line met this week in Merrillville to discuss the implementation of the TDDs along the South Shore Line.
 

Farmers Seek Delay For Hazardous Air Emission Rule

Nov 14, 2017

Chicken and hog farmers want a federal court to delay a rule that would require they report certain hazardous air emissions from manure pits, but Hoosier farmers aren’t sure how they’d comply with the rule if it goes into effect.

A federal court ruled last April farms were not exempt from a 2008 Environmental Protection Agency rule regulating hazardous air emissions. The ruling takes effect Nov. 15, but Indiana Pork Producers executive director Josh Trenary says the EPA and ag industry groups want a delay.

Federal legislation that takes effect this week will restore GI Bill benefits to 7,000 veterans affected by the closure of ITT Tech. U.S. Rep. Luke Messer (R-Ind.), the provision’s author, met with some of those veterans in Greenfield Monday.

The law, the Forever GI Bill, allows veterans to seek benefits at any point in their lifetime and increases education funding. Messer’s provision restores benefits to veterans affected by ITT Tech and Corinthian College closures after August 1, 2015.

October State Revenues Continue Downward Trend

Nov 13, 2017

Total Indiana tax revenues have lagged in each of the four months of the fiscal year that began in July. And October didn’t help, with collections missing the mark by nearly $30 million.

That’s despite sales and individual income taxes which exceeded expectations for the first time this fiscal year – though just barely. And despite that positive month, collections for those two tax categories remain less than expected overall.

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