News

City of Frankfort

It’s no secret Indiana has a drug problem. Many cities and town have been racked with drug crime, overdoses and increased incidence of the diseases that are shared through contact with dirty needles.

But this month, Frankfort leaders got news that their problem may be continuing to worsen. This week on Ask The Mayor, we chat with Chris McBarnes about what his limited resources allow him to do about it.

Alan Cleaver / https://www.flickr.com/photos/alancleaver/

Indiana came closer than it’s ever come during the last session to joining the ranks of states with bias crime, or hate crime laws. 

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Brandon Smith frames the debate over the legislation, including the difficult road it faces going forward.

Indiana came closer than it’s ever come during the 2016 legislative session to joining the ranks of states with bias crime, or hate crime, laws. 

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Brandon Smith frames the debate on the legislation, including the difficult road it faces going forward.

  Author and illustrator Ben Hatke has released yet another colorful children's book, filled with his characteristic watercolor pages of monsters and whimsy. Julia's House for Lost Creatures strays from the usual overly dramaticized tough girl heroine, instead creating a lovely character reviewers see as someone who "just happens to be a girl". Like the Zita the Space Girl trilogy, this book is for young and old readers alike. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

Indiana Senators Weigh In On Gun Control Debate

Jun 16, 2016
Shannon Orem / https://www.flickr.com/photos/playbeasy/

Indiana’s Democratic Senator Joe Donnelly participated in a nearly 15-hour filibuster on gun control in the wake of the Orlando nightclub shooting.

Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut started the filibuster, urging his colleagues to vote on gun control measures after 49 people died over the weekend in the country’s largest mass shooting.

Indiana’s Democratic Senator Joe Donnelly echoed some of Murphy’s sentiments, saying he’s a strong supporter of the second amendment but believes there are smart ways to reduce gun violence.

Noah Coffey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/noahwesley/

Indiana’s Senate immigration study committee shifted its focus in its third meeting Wednesday to the impact of both legal and illegal immigration on the workforce. 

The committee heard testimony from a variety of sources: business organizations, immigration attorneys and people who’ve gone through the immigration process. And a common theme surfaced. 

Here’s Indianapolis immigration attorney Angela Adams:

“It’s largely up to the federal government to solve this quagmire of immigration policy.”

Mike Ripley from the Indiana Chamber of Commerce:

Barnaby Wasson / https://www.flickr.com/photos/barnabywasson/27991131

Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg and state superintendent Glenda Ritz detailed their proposal for universal pre-k Thursday, explaining why they want it for all kids and not just those for low income families.

The two Democrats want to create a new statewide pre-k program, different from the current pilot program supported by Governor Mike Pence, On My Way Pre-K.

On My Way Pre-K grants pre-k scholarships to low income families, but Ritz says she wants the program to be available for all students.

GE Plans To Close Bloomington Plant, Cut 300 Jobs

Jun 16, 2016
Rafael Castillo / https://www.flickr.com/photos/miggslives/

GE Appliances announced Wednesday it plans to close a Bloomington plant that employs 329 people. The decision comes after GE says demand for side-by-side refrigerators made at the facility declined 76 percent since 2008.

The closure is subject to negotiations with the union, which could start this week. If GE and the union reach an agreement, the company estimates about 94 percent of the affected employees will be eligible for retirement. All employees will receive a benefits package.

During union negotiations last year, workers asked for stronger plant closing benefits.

Sarah Fentem / WBAA

As he said himself, Purdue President Mitch Daniels isn’t that interested in ground-breaking ceremonies—“the business with the phony shovels and the phony dirt is so stale and so worn out”—but even so, he was on hand for the ceremonial ground-breaking for West Lafayette’s State Street Project. Perhaps the fact he got to use a 25-foot dirt loader instead of the standard-issue spade had spurred a change of heart.

Daniels was joined by West Lafayette mayor John Dennis, who manned a backhoe.

Gemma Billings/www.flickr.com/photos/gemmamei/6060115683/

The federally-funded Farmers Market Nutrition Program is getting a boost this year in Indiana.

The program, in partnership with the Women, Infants and Children program, provides lower-income pregnant women, moms and children access to healthy foods sold at farmers markets and roadside stands. 

Indiana has added markets in three additional counties, as well as expanded the program in existing counties.

ISTEP Panel: How Will New Test Help Students, Teachers?

Jun 16, 2016
NYC Department of Education / http://schools.nyc.gov/default.htm

The panel re-writing the state’s school standardized assessment met for the second time Tuesday.

However, members are unsure of their vision for the test.

The panel has the power to decide the new test’s format, technology, vendor and many other factors.

But Tuesday’s meeting discussion focused on something different-  the goal of the test.

Many of the educators on the panel said they didn’t want to move forward with technical decisions until they knew exactly how this test is expected to help the state and teachers.

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