Indiana News

Indiana related news items and stories.

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The Indiana Republican party may have gotten more than it had bargained for after it invited users to share their “Obamacare horror stories” in a Facebook post earlier this week. The GOP account was inundated with thousands of replies from Affordable Care Act supporters from across the country.

Mounds Greenway Hits Potential Hurdle In Anderson

Jul 5, 2017

The Mounds Greenway is generating support from some — but, importantly, not all — local public officials in east central Indiana.

The mayors of Westfield, Carmel and Noblesville joined the mayor of Muncie in voicing public support for the Mounds Greenway, a proposed 17-mile trail that would run along the White River between Muncie and Anderson. The Hoosier Environmental Council wants to see the trail eventually extend west past Anderson into Hamilton and Marion counties.

The cost of an Independence Day picnic’s worth of groceries continued to drop in Indiana this year, as part of a race to the bottom in the prices of competing food products.

The Indiana Farm Bureau tracks the cost of different sets of grocery items throughout the year. For July Fourth, it’s a 10-person barbecue – hot dogs, hamburgers and ribs, watermelon and other sides, plus drinks and condiments.

It all costs $51.50 this year, down 35 cents from last year and about 75 cents from 2014.

A federally-funded program that helps Indiana homeowners avoid foreclosures stopped taking applications at the end of June.

The Indiana Hardest Hit Fund provides mortgage assistance to people in danger of losing their homes.

It stopped taking new applications at the close of business Friday, after learning in the spring that it would need remaining funds for current participants.

Indiana American Water has a warning for Hoosiers this Fourth of July as they set off – and clean up – their pyrotechnic displays.

Fireworks contain a chemical called perchlorate. It’s also found in rocket fuels, explosives, and some fertilizer. At high levels, the chemical in drinking water can create problems with the human thyroid gland, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Indiana American Water serves a million Hoosiers. Company spokesman Joe Loughmiller says there’s a few ways Hoosiers can lessen the threat fireworks pose to the state’s water sources.

More than 800 people died on Indiana roadways in 2015 – slightly higher than the last five years.

Still, a National Safety Council report ranks Indiana 8th in the nation when it comes to policies that protect people on the roads.

Helping that ranking: Indiana laws address distracted driving, teen drivers, seat belt use and alcohol impaired driving. And the Indiana Governor’s Council on Impaired and Dangerous Driving helps fund extra DUI checkpoints.

How Indiana Gives School A-F Grades Is Changing

Jul 3, 2017

The state will now consider chronic absenteeism and how non-native speakers are learning English when calculating school A-F grades.

These two changes come as part of the Department of Education’s draft plan for how the state will comply with the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which replaces the old No Child Left Behind law.

Economic rebirth in Indiana downtowns can be a two-way street – literally.

Hoosier cities are spending millions to convert one-way main streets into two-way arteries.

The change can help boost the local economy, but it can also be hard on small businesses, like the one John von Erdmansdorff runs in West Lafayette.

Von Erdmansdorff is a local legend who’s spent almost 50 years selling all kinds of treasures out of his row of stores, Von’s Shops, on State Street.

New legislation to provide more families access to hearing aids went into effect July 1. The Hearing Aid Assistance Program of Indiana (HAAPI) now includes younger children in the program and an increase in funding.

HAAPI has been helping Hoosier families afford hearing aids using state funding since 2014. Lawmakers this year included children 3 and up into the program; before it was kindergarten.

Christine Moody, executive director for the state’s Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education says the changes to the program aim to help more Hoosiers.

High School Job Training Takes On New Life In Indiana

Jun 30, 2017

What’s the point of high school? To get students ready for college or the workforce?

For years, Indiana officials have gone back and forth.

“Indiana has tended to shift one way and say ‘everyone needs a four year degree’ and then we shift the other way and say ‘we just need technical certifications,’” says Molly Deuberry, Indiana Department of Education spokesperson. “Really, the truth is in the middle, we need a great mix of all of those things.”

Laws Going Into Effect July 1

Jun 30, 2017

Most of the legislation approved by the Indiana General Assembly in 2017 takes effect July 1. Here are some of the changes Hoosiers will see from those new laws.

Kids under age 18 have to wear a helmet on ATVs

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources says 2016 marked the deadliest year on record for all-terrain vehicles. The new law means every person under age 18 has to wear a helmet when riding or operating an ATV.

An Indiana consumer advocacy group is suing over access to public records that could shed light on how the Carrier company reached a deal with the state and President Donald Trump late last year.

July 1 Marks Tax, Fee Increases For Hoosiers

Jun 30, 2017

About 45 tax and fee increases take effect in Indiana July 1, the start of the new fiscal year.

Most of the tax and fee hikes the legislature passed this year are pretty routine, says John Ketzenberger, president of the Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute. The exceptions are tied to road funding – chiefly, a 10 cent-per-gallon gas tax hike.

“Gosh,” says Ketzenberger, “It’d been almost 20 years since we raised the fuel taxes, so it is unusual, and we talked about it for a couple of years before we did it.”

Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson says she cannot fully comply with a request from President Donald Trump’s newly established Commission on Election Integrity.

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the presidential commission’s vice chair, requested voter information from Secretaries of State around the country. Kobach is reportedly seeking names, addresses, birth dates, and social security numbers, as well as the voting history, law enforcement record, and political party of each voter.

State Exec. Branch To Stop Asking For Criminal History On Job Apps

Jun 29, 2017

Gov. Eric Holcomb says a range of state agencies will no longer ask job applicants if they have been arrested or convicted of a crime.

The executive order, issued Thursday, aims to give Hoosiers with criminal records more chances to become state employees.

Right now, applicants for state job openings have to self-report any criminal history.

Holcomb’s order says this can make it hard for people with records to “have productive lives because of the stigma of their past.”

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