News

IDEM Looking Into Wabash River Fish Kill

Aug 21, 2015
Andrea Pokrzywinski / https://www.flickr.com/photos/andreagp/2741289470

The state is trying to figure out what’s killing fish in northeastern Indiana, near the source of the Wabash River.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management officials took samples from the river this week nad tests came back positive for a species of blue-green algae, which could be part of the problem.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management Spokesman Dan Goldblatt says they’ve confirmed there’s an algal bloom in the Wabash River.

Ryan Griffis / https://www.flickr.com/photos/grifray/195738091/

Indiana and the U.S. are seeing an uptick in traffic deaths in the first half of the year.

The National Safety Council says fatalities are up 14-percent nationwide. Indiana's 356 deaths represent a 23-percent increase, and the highest six-month total in three years.

The Opus Group

Frankfort is looking to expand its population to fill industrial jobs Mayor Chris McBarnes is trying to lure to the city. The unemployment rate is around 4-percent, which means there are only about 700 unemployed people in the 16,000-person city – and not all of them are trained to be manufacturers.

McBarnes says if ConAgra, which finished its Frankfort distribution hub earlier this month, exercises its option to build a manufacturing center in the city, it’d require hundreds of workers – but McBarnes admits the city would need to import them.

property exchange
Courtesy Brian Gossard / Lafayette Police Department

The Lafayette Police Department is hoping the creation of a “safe swap” area will make it less dangerous for area residents looking to unload their old couches or unwanted basketball tickets. The area, located at the city’s fire station at Union and Creasy Lane, will serve as a safe zone for people to complete transactions arranged through websites such as eBay or Craigslist or through more old-school means, like newspaper classifieds.

gas meters
Damian Gadal / https://www.flickr.com/photos/23024164@N06/4734008149/

The sight of a meter reader making the rounds in Tippecanoe County will soon be a thing of the past—at least for customers of natural gas company Vectren.

The firm is in the process of automating its meter-reading process, but Vectren spokeswoman Natalie Hedde says no current employees will lose their job as a result of the automation.

“The transition is not about the reduction of meter readers themselves,” she says. "It’s more about the efficiency and the accuracy of the information that we’re collecting.”

Goodreads.com

When a body washes up on the shore of the Thames river in 1930s London, Scotland Yard Assistant Commissioner Joe Sandilands must split his time between investigating its murder and guarding a visiting American Senator.

Sandilands quickly discovers that the man he is assigned to protect is strangely connected to the young dead woman.

So goes the plot of A Spider In The Cup -- one of Barbara Cleverly's Detective Joe Sandilands novels. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

McConnell Center / https://www.flickr.com/photos/mcconnellcenter/5036911914/

Former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) – a longtime leader on nuclear disarmament – says he’s worried about the spread of nuclear weapons throughout the Middle East if Congress kills the nuclear agreement with Iran. 

Critics of the Iran nuclear agreement – including Indiana Sen. Dan Coats (R-IN) – say the period it covers is too short. 

Ynse / https://www.flickr.com/photos/ynse/542370154/

If you’re arrested for a felony in Indiana, should the police automatically take a DNA sample to keep on file?  That’s the question a panel of lawmakers considered this week during a study committee hearing.

In Indiana, police input an offender’s DNA for comparison in a national database only after conviction of a felony.  So-called “DNA arrestee testing” laws would allow law enforcement to take those samples after a felony arrest. 

City of Frankfort

Though the effect on the Greater Lafayette area has gotten more press, the closure of I-65 north has touched Frankfort as well.

This week on Ask the Mayor, we find out from Chris McBarnes what it’s meant to businesses and to commuters that his interstate exit is getting less traffic and that the prescribed detour leads people in the other direction when they turn onto State Road 28.

We also chat about drugs in Frankfort. What can a recent bust of four alleged drug dealers tell us about how much of a problem the city faces?

Chris Goldberg / https://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisgold/5256004891/

Boone County Sheriff Mike Nielsen took to Facebook to vent about a dangerous intersection that’s getting heavy traffic as the official detour around a closed bridge on I-65 near Lafayette. His post was prompted by a fatal accident that killed a Lebanon woman Tuesday morning.

Nielsen wants the Indiana Department of Transportation to install a stoplight at the intersection of US-52 and State Road 47.

Anna Hanks / https://www.flickr.com/photos/annaustin/15405501922/

Former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle has been charged with child pornography and sex with minors, weeks after investigators raided his Zionsville home.

Hands crossed and remaining seated, Fogle briefly appeared before a judge Wednesday to be charged with possession of child pornography and traveling to New York City to have sex with underage girls. As he left the federal courthouse, a swarm of cameras and heckling onlookers were outside.

His attorney, Jeremy Margolis says Fogle will plead guilty.

Joe Donnelly

Senator Joe Donnelly (D-IN) says he still has questions about Iran’s intentions in the nuclear agreement and cites a lack of action to cut off Iranian support for terrorism. 

But he says his chief concern is the potential future need for U.S. military intervention in the Middle Eastern nation. 

And in a statement, the Hoosier Democrat says he owes it to American servicemembers to ensure every other option of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon is exhausted. 

Thus, Donnelly says, he’s willing to give the nuclear agreement the opportunity to succeed. 

Columbus To Consider LGBT Protection Ordinance

Aug 19, 2015
WFIU Public Radio / https://www.flickr.com/photos/wfiupublicradio/5558630731/

The Columbus City Council is considering a request from that city's Human Rights Commission for a new ordinance aimed at making a pair of groups "protected classes.”

Human Rights Commission Director Aida Ramirez says these groups include members of the LGBT community and those ages 40 and older.

Ramirez says many members of the LGBT community have written and called the commission to discuss the way they have been made to feel by some segments of the Columbus community.

Christopher Penn / https://www.flickr.com/photos/financialaidpodcast/3001931281/

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has filed a class-action lawsuit challenging a law that prohibits sex offenders from entering schools to vote. 

The ACLU filed the suit on behalf of a Blackford County man whose polling place is on school property.

Attorney Jen Mensz argues the new law that took effect last month and says sex offenders should vote via an absentee ballot is unconstitutional.

Former Indiana Judge Seeks Attorney General Bid

Aug 19, 2015
Judge Lorenzo Arredondo Justice Center / http://arredondojusticecenter.org/photo-gallery/

A former judge from Northwest Indiana is seeking the Democratic nomination for attorney general. 

Judge Lorenzo Arredondo was a Lake County circuit court judge for more than three decades. He was also the first Latino judge elected in the state of Indiana and the longest serving elected Latino state trial judge in the U.S. when he retired in 2010.

Arrendondo hasn’t made an official campaign announcement but has filed the paperwork to form a campaign committee.

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